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What is the background of most senior-level executives?

What is the background of most senior-level executives in a business? Do I have to get more degrees in order to achieve that level? business finance business-development business-analysis

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Robert’s Answer

Hi,


In my experience, most senior-level executives are business unit focused, and have risen up through the ranks to obtain a complete view of the business. This doesn't necessarily mean to start in the mail room and ascend to VP role. Instead, what I mean is obtaining experience in all relevant roles of all of the functions that support that business/industry. i.e. Sales, Marketing, Operations, etc. Obtaining a complete and intimate view/perspective of all of the relevant functions- seems to produce the most successful senior level executives. Additionally, this approach gives you exposure to parts of the business that you may find you have new found propensity to pursue further.


I do not personally think that an inventory of multiple degrees will be the most efficient way to obtain senior level executive status. Instead, academically focus on an area and obtain a relevant degree to gain entry into the industry of your interest. And then, once you are in there, don't be afraid to seek other roles to gain experience to make you a well-rounded successful senior-level executive.


Hope this helps.

Best of luck!
-rbt

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Marie-France’s Answer

The backgrounds of senior-level executives vary across all industries and fields. Someone could have a background in history and head a business in Telcom. In other words, follow your passion and maybe master in an industry you would most enjoy working.

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Lisa’s Answer

Intelligence
Patience
Kindness
Ability to listen to all ideas and make a fair decision

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