What is a “General Manager” anyway?

When I was a student at The Florida State University, I applied for a scholarship and had to meet with the committee as part of the application process. The interviewer asked what my goal job was, and I answered that I wanted to be the White House Press Secretary.

Fast forward to now, and there’s absolutely no way I’d wanted to be any politician’s press secretary. But to be honest, I really didn’t know what I wanted do when I gave that answer so many years ago.

As I’ve been developing in the professional world over the past 8 years, the picture has become clearer. I love social media and digital marketing, but I don’t want to craft Facebook ads forever. I’ve had great mentoring and opportunities to grow not just as a marketing person, but also as a manager in leader. And now, I’ve accepted a position as General Manager of the company I’ve been with for 5 years.

But what is a general manager? We had a GM for a little less than 2 years, and to be honest, I’m still not sure what he did. There was a COO before that, but I never worked super closely with her.

So this is a little uncomfortable. I don’t have an MBA, I’ve only managed a marketing team (although that included a range of people from new to experienced, young to 10+ years older than me), and I’m humbled. But I was given this job and elevated to this position for a reason, so I’ll do the best I can, and hope that I help some people along the way.


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