General managers are responsible for overseeing day-to-day operations in a company or department to ensure a high standard of customer service.
Depending on the size and nature of the business, their tasks may include setting goals, organising budgets and managing staff.
This detailed guide explains everything you need to know about general managers, including a job description for the role, as well as the skills and qualifications required, what salary to expect and typical employers.
- General manager job description
- How much do general managers earn?
- What does a general manager do?
- Requirements, skills and qualifications
- Who employs general managers?
- Which junior jobs progress to general manager roles?
General manager job description
General Manager | Pasta Pronto
About Pasta Pronto
With over 200 restaurants across the country, Pasta Pronto are one of the UK’s largest and most well loved Italian restaurant chains.
About the role
As the general manager of our Liverpool restaurant, you’ll be in charge of overseeing all restaurant operations to ensure an excellent standard of customer service.
- Successfully manage restaurant budget, approve all outgoings and ensure spending is fully optimised
- Manage and motivate our team, including setting a weekly rota, delegating responsibilities appropriately and providing advice, guidance and support
- Implement regular goals and targets and ensure these are met and exceeded
- Deal with escalated complaints and issues to guarantee an exemplary standard of customer service across the board
- Liaise with senior regional management by regularly reporting on overall restaurant performance
- Ensure staff follow food safety regulations at all times
- Become an expert on our food, culture and company values and a proud ambassador for the Pasta Pronto brand
- Devise and implement restaurant promotions and offers to attract consistent new business
Location & commitments
- Permanent, full-time position based in our Liverpool restaurant
- 40 hours per week based on a rota, including weekends and evenings
- Travel to other Pasta Pronto restaurants may be required from time to time
- 5+ years of managerial experience in a similar role in the hospitality industry
- Excellent verbal and written communication skills
- Proven experience budgeting and overseeing financial operations
- Outstanding leadership and decision-making skills with the ability to inspire and motivate a strong team
- Problem-solving aptitude and astute attention to detail
Contact us to apply
If you’d like to apply for this role, please email your CV and cover letter to our senior HR manager Georgina at Georgina.Johnson@pastapronto.co.uk.
How much do general managers earn?
General managers can expect to earn a comfortable salary, with a UK average of around £32,500.
General manager salaries in the UK
- Low: £27,000
- Average: £32,500
- High: £42,500
General manager salaries will vary hugely depending on;
- The industry of the employer – e.g. does the general manager work for a bank? Large retail chain? Small, independent restaurant? Etc.
- The size of the operation – is the general manager managing one department within the company, such as sales or HR? Or managing the entire company overall? How many people do they manage?
- General salary factors – including level of candidate experience and location
For example, a general manager working in a high-end Michelin star restaurant is likely to earn more than a general manager working for a local bakery.
Keep in mind that these are average figures taken from job advert samples, and do not include extra benefits such as performance bonuses, holiday allowance and healthcare.
What does a general manager do?
To simplify the job description, here’s a breakdown some of the typical tasks, duties and responsibilities a general manager will perform.
- Setting KPIs – Setting both short and long-term goals to measure company or department performance
- Financial management – Setting budget, approving all spending, optimising expenditure and managing other financial resources including stocks
- People management – Ensuring all staff understand their roles and receive adequate training, delegating responsibilities, boosting team morale and encouraging staff to adhere to company values
- Daily operations – Overseeing staff and systems to ensure the company’s daily activities are carried out successfully
- Implementing policies – Developing and applying company policies and procedures, whether health and safety guidelines or broader company vision, and ensuring these are followed correctly
- Reporting – Providing regular performance and progress reports to senior management and working alongside them
- Customer service – Resolving escalated customer service and client issues and overseeing customer service standards by training and monitoring staff
- Recruitment and development – Identifying the need for new hires and overseeing the recruitment process of new staff and training them
What do general managers need?
General manager roles don’t usually require qualifications, but employers will expect a good level of education and most importantly, several years of experience in a related field.
Exact requirements will vary depending on the industry and size of the company, but generally speaking, here’s an overview of what’s needed:
Junior GM jobs generally ask for previous experience as an assistant or deputy manager in a related industry. Some graduate jobs or programs may also feed into these positions.
Senior GM jobs will typically specify that candidates have five or more years of general management experience. They will also show a strong preference for candidates who have gained this experience in the sector they are applying for — for example, general managers for a large store will need to have extensive experience in retail.
General manager skills
In addition to the industry-specific skills mentioned above, employers will be keen to employ general managers with strong transferable skills in the below areas:
- Communication: Excellent written and verbal communication with staff, customers/clients and senior management
- Leadership: Managing and delegating responsibilities to a team of staff
- Organisation: Balancing multiple conflicting tasks across a range of areas and organising rotas, rules and schedules
- Working under pressure: Remaining calm and focused in a busy environment
- Problem-solving: Dealing with unexpected issues that arise during day to day operations
- Numeracy: Calculating budget and finances
- Attention to detail: Ensuring accuracy and spotting any mistakes when calculating finances or composing policies
General manager qualifications
Employers rarely ask for specific qualifications when hiring general managers, and instead value broader experience and soft skills.
However, competition for roles can be high — so in addition to good GCSEs and A-Levels, the following qualifications can offer candidates an advantage.
A Chartered Management Institute (CMI) qualification is a highly esteemed award that can develop leadership skills and boost career prospects. It provides a progressive framework for learning over time, with each qualification leading on to the next.
The key CMI qualifications for general management are:
- Level 3 Diploma in Principles of Management and Leadership
- Level 3 Certificate in Principles of Management and Leadership
- Level 5 Diploma in Management and Leadership
- Level 5 Certificate in Management and Leadership
While not essential, some larger corporate companies prefer candidates to have a degree in Business, Business Management or a related subject.
Industry specific qualifications
It can be useful for general managers to hold qualifications related more closely to their working environment. For example, a general manager in the hospitality industry would benefit from having hospitality-focused qualifications such as a Level 4 Diploma in Hospitality Leadership.
What is expected of general managers?
Typically, general managers must commit to the following:
- Full time hours – (35 – 40 hours per week) with occasional overtime required
- Evening and weekend work – General managers in some sectors, such as retail and hospitality, may be required to work evenings and weekends
- Fast-paced work – General managers overseeing large teams or working for more extensive companies should expect a busy, fast-paced environment with plenty of tasks to juggle
- Location – Normally based at employer office, store or restaurant
- Occasional travel – Occasional travel to other sites for meetings or conferences may be required
General manager benefits
General managers will receive a variety of benefits, depending on their organisation and location. These may include:
- Bonuses/tips – can be based on performance
- Holiday allowance
- Product discounts
Who employs general managers?
General managers are employed across a range of industries, from retail to banking. They may be hired to manage a specific department within an organisation — such as sales or HR — or an entire store, restaurant or hotel.
Employers include, but are not limited to, companies in these areas:
Which junior jobs progress to general manager roles?
In addition to graduate jobs and programs, there are a variety of roles that can provide a direct pathway towards becoming a general manager.
Supervisors are employed to provide support to senior management by monitoring and reviewing the performance of more junior members of staff, creating rotas and other junior management tasks – this makes it an ideal stepping stone into a general management role.
Deputy general manager
Deputy general managers assist general managers with people management, budgeting and overseeing operations. They usually work in a more customer-facing, front of house role, but their exposure to general managers, makes them ideal for moving into more senior management positions.
Which senior jobs do general managers progress to?
General management can be a lucrative career in its own right, but can also lead to more exciting and well-paid opportunities such as:
Operations managers have a greater responsibility than general managers in terms of directing a company and ensuring that it is meeting its long-term goals and objectives.
Directorship roles comprise various senior management positions that oversee the broader strategy and leadership of a business or area.
Chief operating officer (COO)
Chief operating officers are senior executives who oversee the day-to-day operational functions of a company or department.
General manager job description – conclusion
General manager is a highly desirable role with recruiters across a broad range of industries in the UK and beyond.
It is a well-paid, enjoyable position that is challenging but can be incredibly rewarding and offers plenty of opportunities for career progression and overall job satisfaction.