Login | Register

How to Become a Natural Sciences Manager

Bachelor's or higher degree, plus work experience

Typically, natural sciences managers start their career as scientists. They usually have a master's degree, a bachelor's degree or a Ph.D. in a related field such as engineering or in a particular discipline. Certain managers prefer those with a management degree such as an MBA or Master of Business Administration or a MPA or Master of Public Administration.

Work Experience

Natural sciences managers may move up to management positions after spending years working as scientists. As experience is gained in the scientific realm, more independence is given in their work and more responsibility is granted. Eventually, they may oversee the content and direction of projects and lead research teams prior to securing a promotion to an administrative position.

Education & Training

The majority of natural sciences managers begin their careers as scientists. Technical and scientific knowledge is a must for managers in order for them to be able to comprehend the work of those they are supervising. This knowledge is essential for being able to adequately offer technical assistance when required.

Natural sciences managers who prefer acquiring postsecondary education in management can enroll in Ph.D. or master's degree programs that provide business management courses within a natural science. Those who wish to obtain general management skills may opt to pursue an MPA Master of Public Administration or an MBA or Master of Business Administration.

It is necessary for individuals to upgrade their knowledge continually due to the rapid growth of certain scientific developments.

Skills and Qualities that will Help

Communication skills: It is vital that natural sciences managers can clearly communicate to numerous audiences including the public, policymakers and scientists. Both oral and written communication are essential.

Critical-thinking skills: It is necessary for natural sciences managers to evaluate the work of others closely. They must decide if the results obtained by staff were obtained using correct methods and sound science.

Interpersonal skills: Natural sciences managers often lead groups of research team members; therefore, working positively with others to achieve common goals is important. Commonly, managers deal with conflict. Being able to turn potential problems into positive outcomes for their organization is crucial.

Leadership skills: These managers need to be able to motivate, direct and organize other people. Having the capacity to identify the weaknesses and strengths of their employees is helpful for creating a successful environment.

Problem-solving skills: Scientific observation skills and analysis methods are utilized to find answers to complex technical issues.

Time-management skills: It is vital that natural sciences managers complete numerous technical, supervisory and administrative tasks while following project schedules and meeting deadlines.