Your organization's management structure may be divided into levels, each with different amounts of responsibility and numbers of reports. Regional and divisional leaders within your company are usually considered "middle management," at least one step below chief executive roles. The differences in these jobs can be marked or minor, based how your organization structures its management tiers and how it defines the terms. You'll be happier and do your best when you know just who's who.
What is a Division?
Divisional managers' responsibilities depend largely on the organization's definition of "division." Divisions may be a branches of the company, such as marketing or finance. Or, a division may be a specific location, such as your particular plant or office. Divisional managers might be called directors or might have other titles that indicate that they supervise multiple managers within the same department or location. These leaders are responsible for the well-being of the division, including financial, sales and marketing efforts. And, they may take on more direct coaching and interaction with individual employees.
A regional manager, by definition, has responsibilities that have a geographical component. Large organizations with multiple offices or operating over broad geographical areas often have regional managers. Regional managers usually oversee multi-state territories, such as the Northeast or the Mid-Atlantic. You shouldn't confuse regional managers with district managers, who typically operate in tighter geographic clusters, such as metropolitan areas. Regional managers might meet with your office or store manager in attempts to coax the best performance from your location.
Divisional Manager Roles
Divisional managers are responsible for the review, interviewing and hiring of employees for entry-level management positions, such as team leaders. Divisional managers control the succession planning of leadership beneath them, promoting team leaders and managers to best fulfill the goals and responsibilities of the location or division. There's a good chance you'll interview with a divisional manager as you move up the career ladder. They're in charge of employee certification, training and career development of each direct report. These leaders set employee goals, ensuring conformity to company standards and ensuring high standards from their employees and division.
Regional Manager Duties
The regional manager, in addition to overseeing locations within the territory, also serves as liaison between this area and corporate. This important function helps to ensure that your office or store is following the guidelines and achieving all of its goals. The regional manager also relays local concerns back to upper-level management. Regional managers are directly responsible for picking competent leaders who, in turn, recruit the best employees. The best regional managers inspire local managers, increasing enthusiasm in you and your colleagues and getting the best work you have to offer.
- Digital Vision./Photodisc/Getty Images