What Can You Do With a Master’s Degree in Leadership?

Industry Advice Leadership

Are you passionate about leading teams? Are you looking for an opportunity to grow in both your personal life and your career? To make more money and become more marketable in your field? To take your career to the next level? We have good news: You can achieve all of these goals with a master’s degree in leadership—in as little as 18 months.

By enrolling in an advanced leadership program, you’ll be better equipped to engage teams, collaborate with colleagues at all levels of your organization, and create effective strategies for companies in any industry—from global charity groups to the fastest-growing tech disrupters. With this skill set, it’s no wonder that students who earn this degree are making more and going further with their careers than ever before. Find out more about what you can do with a Master of Science in Leadership degree, and the jobs available to you upon graduation.

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How a Master’s Degree in Leadership Can Help You Get Ahead

Northeastern University’s Master of Science in Organizational Leadership program helps students build on their existing strengths to create career-ready professionals for the highest levels of employment in the U.S. and beyond, enabling graduates to lead organizations on a global scale.

The program’s combination of world-class teaching methods and Northeastern’s distinct experiential learning model come together to help students master skills that will make them successful in the industry and location of their choosing. Partnerships with International University in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, and the Swinburne University of Technology in Melbourne, Australia, help develop culturally astute leaders and ensure that the proven methods our faculty use are instructive to students all over the world.

One of the most attractive aspects of the program is that it allows students to pursue their passion in almost any field. While Northeastern’s leadership degree offers seven core concentrations, including Human Resources Management, Nonprofit Management, Organizational Communication, and Project Management, students aren’t limited to careers in those fields. Along with industry-specific leadership competencies, these concentrations teach essential core leadership skills, as well. The program also includes a capstone project in which students develop an action-based initiative to practice their understanding in a real-world environment. In short, this degree allows those who participate a chance to invest in themselves as leaders, while simultaneously putting their career on a fast track to success.

Common Jobs for Professionals with a Master’s in Leadership

Upon graduation, students will be armed with the skills and knowledge to effectively lead any organization they choose. Having honed their ability to manage tasks, resolve conflicts, lead teams, and communicate effectively, MS in Leadership graduates are highly attractive to companies facing organizational challenges. And, while an advanced leadership degree will help you excel in any field or career, the curriculum is especially relevant to the roles below.

Popular jobs for those with a master’s degree in leadership include:

1. C-level Executive

Median Pay: $151,300

Projected 10-Year Growth: 8 percent

Combining an advanced leadership degree with previous work history and educational background, MS in Leadership graduates are a favored pick for the growing number of  C-suite opportunities in companies of every kind. The most common role for those with a master’s degree in leadership is CEO (Chief Executive Officer). With a median salary of approximately $120,000, this highly sought-after position coordinates the operations of an organization to meet and exceed business growth and performance goals. CEOs are needed in every industry, and the job outlook for this career is projected to grow substantially.

2. Corporate Trainer

Median Pay: $60,544

Projected 10-Year Growth: 11 percent

If you enjoy teaching others and have an appreciation for learning within a business atmosphere, this role may be for you. These in-demand roles are projected to grow at a pace of 11 percent or more during the next 10 years, which is higher than the average growth rate across all occupations and good news for job seekers. This position is sometimes also called a “Training and Development Manager” or a “Director of Knowledge and Development.”

3. Human Resources Manager

Median Pay: $82,304

Projected 10-Year Growth: 9 percent

Human resources and workplace culture positions are popular niches for those with advanced leadership degrees. The Human Resources Management concentration of Northeastern’s MS in Leadership program teaches many of the skills you’ll need on the job. Responsibilities of this role include the planning and oversight of recruiting, hiring, and employee management, including benefit plans, workplace disputes, and regulatory compliance.

Northeastern works closely with the Society for Human Resources Management (SHRM) to recognize SHRM-CP and SHRM-SCP credential-holders by awarding them three or six quarter hours of transfer credit, allowing them to save on tuition and earn their master’s degree in leadership more quickly.

4. Health Services Manager

Median Pay: $83,840

Projected 10-Year Growth: 32 percent

Also referred to as “healthcare executives” or “healthcare administrators,” this is the career path for those with a passion for medicine and health services. Professionals in this role are tasked with overseeing physicians and facilities as well as conforming to laws and regulations to provide patients with the best care possible.

The U.S. Census Bureau reports that the nation’s median age continues to rise, which might explain why the field is expected to grow at a much faster rate than the average of many other occupations. With a Master of Science in Leadership from Northeastern, you can elect to pursue the Health Management concentration to position yourself to take advantage of this industry’s rapid growth.

5. School Principal

Median Pay: $86,784

Projected 10-Year Growth: 8 percent

Individuals who can combine their leadership skills, teaching experience, and passion for shaping the lives of youths make for ideal education administrators and school principals. As a principal, you’ll coordinate curriculums, oversee daily school activities, manage teachers and other staff, and provide a safe environment for young learners. These roles typically require a master’s degree as well as a few years of teaching experience.

6. Sales Manager

Median Pay: $70,016

Projected 10-Year Growth: 7 percent

Sales professionals drive the revenue that helps businesses meet their growth objectives. Professionals with the right skills and educational background are aggressively pursued by organizations in every industry. If you have the leadership abilities to guide your sales teams to their goals, you stand to earn even more through performance bonuses or by eventually earning the title of vice president—or even president—of sales for your company.

Market Outlook for Leadership Jobs

Companies who invest in leaders do better financially. According to a study conducted by leadership development firm DDI, organizations with managers who have strong business management and leadership skills “showed significantly greater net profit and return on assets.” A master’s degree in leadership from Northeastern uniquely positions graduates to help businesses achieve their most ambitious growth goals and, as a result, corporations, government groups, and non-profit organizations are willing to pay more for this skill set.

The Project Management Institute’s Global Accreditation Center has even accredited Northeastern’s Master of Science in Leadership with a concentration in Project Management program for its curriculum objectives, faculty proficiency, and student achievements upon completion. The accreditation acknowledges the program’s adherence to PMI’s rigorous standards, providing graduates with an even greater advantage in the labor force. This is just one industry area where the return on your educational investment lines up directly with real-world expectations for professionals seeking top jobs in competitive niches.

Even for students pursuing a career that doesn’t have an industry-recognized set of standards, simply earning an advanced degree is highly profitable. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that master’s degree holders in many industries (including public relations, health management, human resources, operations management, and business management) earn significantly higher wages than their counterparts with only a bachelor’s degree. Master’s degree holders working in securities, commodities, and financial services sales, enjoy an incredible return on their education, earning nearly 90 percent more than those without an advanced degree.

Turn Your Passion for Leadership Into a Rewarding Career

If you’re looking to accelerate your career with an advanced degree, or are interested in the career paths mentioned above, consider how a master’s degree in leadership from Northeastern University might help you reach your goals. For those who have already earned their bachelor’s degree, it’s possible to obtain a Master of Science in Organizational Leadership—on-campus or online—in as little as 18 months.

Even if you’re not quite ready to enroll in a graduate program, there are other ways to improve your leadership skills to help you get ahead. Download our free guide below to learn more.

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