How to Become a Training and Development Manager
Training and development managers meet with other managers to determine training needs.
Candidates need a combination of education and related work experience to become a training and development manager.
Although managers need a bachelor’s degree for many positions, some jobs require a master’s degree. Managers can have a variety of educational backgrounds, but they often have a bachelor’s degree in human resources, business administration, or a related field.
Some employers prefer or require that managers have a master’s degree, usually with a concentration in training and development, human resources management, organizational development, or business administration.
Training and development managers also may benefit from studying instructional design, behavioral psychology, or educational psychology. In addition, as technology continues to play a larger role in training and development, a growing number of organizations seek candidates who have a background in information technology or computer science.
Work Experience in a Related Occupation
Related work experience is essential for training and development managers. Many positions require work experience in training and development or another human resources field, management, or teaching. For example, many training and development managers start out as training and development specialists. Some employers also prefer experience in the industry in which the company operates. Increasingly, employers look for workers with experience in information technology as organizations introduce more e-learning and technology-based tools.
Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations
Many professional associations for human resources professionals offer classes to enhance the skills of their members. Some associations, including the American Society for Training and Development and International Society for Performance Improvement, specialize in training and development and offer certification programs. Although not required, certification can show professional expertise and credibility. In fact, many employers prefer to hire certified candidates, and some positions may require certification.
Communication skills. Communication skills are essential for training and development managers because they often give presentations. Workers must communicate information clearly and facilitate learning by diverse audiences. They also must be able to effectively convey instructions to their staff.
Critical-thinking skills. Training and development managers use critical-thinking skills when assessing classes, materials, and programs. They must identify the training needs of an organization and recognize where changes and improvements can be made.
Decision-making skills. Training and development managers must decide the best training programs to meet the needs of the organization. For example, they must review available training methods and materials and choose those that best fit each program.
Interpersonal skills. Training and development managers need strong interpersonal skills because delivering training programs requires collaborating with staff, trainees, subject matter experts, and the organization’s leaders. They also accomplish much of their work through teams.
Leadership skills. Leadership skills are important for training and development managers, who are often in charge of a staff and are responsible for many programs. Managers must be able to organize, motivate, and instruct those working under them.