A business development manager is part salesperson, part customer service representative, and part marketer. Their overarching goal is to increase current and future sales for a company. These professionals need to combine the above skill set with business acumen and the ability to make strategic directions and manage risk.

This business development manager job description discusses in more detail expected duties, required skills, necessary education and experience, the typical work schedule and a career outlook. After reading this article, you should have an excellent idea of what business development managers do and how to become one.

What Does a Business Development Manager Do?

If a company is not profitable, they will not succeed. That is why the business development manager job description shows that these professionals are essential to turning a profit and gaining longevity as a business. These people are fundamentally sales professionals. However, they are not only interested in signing new clients, but also retaining current ones and increasing the amount of money they spend at a business. On a business development manager resume, there can be meetings with various departments to communicate goals, building relationships with clients, acting as a customer service representative, and staying current on the latest trends in the field.

Business Development Manager

It is extremely uncommon for a new professional to take on the role of business development manager. Rather, this position requires someone with experience as well as a bachelor’s degree. The median wage for a business development manager was $105,830 in 2016.

Business Development Manager Job Description for Resume – Responsibilities

A business development manager needs several different skills and competencies to perform successfully in their job. The following list of responsibilities covers many, but not all, facets of the job. Use this list as a starting place or brainstorming resource to create your customized resume.

  • Network with other business professionals and build a possible clientele.
  • Meet with clients on a regular basis and come up with convincing ways to show them a need for more of a particular product.
  • Provides leadership to the sales team and sets goals for growing the business.
  • Build relationships that lead to repeat sales and business.
  • Communicate effectively with team members to communicate expectations.
  • Perform needs analysis of various companies or related organizations. This will allow for a targeted sales number and relationship.
  • Creatively market solutions and products so people see the relative advantage.

Business Development Manager Essential Skills

  • Relationship building skills. Business development managers must be excellent at building relationships. This means they must take the time to understand the client’s need and invest time strengthening their emotional connection.
  • Persuasion skills. There are going to be business development professionals from other companies that are also trying to sell and capitalize on similar products. These professionals must be persuasive and convincing on the benefits of your product.
  • Goal-setting skills. Sales teams are more likely to exceed expectations when they have targeted goals to aim for. The business development manager is able to set goals that are hard to get, but still possible.
  • Decision-making skills. A business development manager needs to make decisions with a certain amount of risk. This means that they need to be comfortable making decisions when there is a certain level of uncertainty.

How to Become a Business Development Manager

A business development manager job description shows that, at minimum, a bachelor’s degree is required. They also need prior experience in a related part of the company and the ability to show they can lead and manage. A certificate can show external validation to an employer.

Education & Training Requirements

Virtually all business development managers need a bachelor’s degree. Typical majors are business, labor and employment relations, business administration, organizational leadership, or promotions and marketing. Some positions, particularly higher positions at larger companies, prefer someone who has a master’s degree. If a student pursues a second major or a minor, they should focus on systems and design.

There is no additional schooling required beyond the initial degree. However, a business developer should be committed to lifelong learning and embracing changes in the field. Those who want to show an external validation of their skills could earn a certificate. There is no standard certificate in the field. It is up to the professional to do their due diligence and evaluate certificate options.

Two options are the Meirc Training & Consulting Certified Business Development Professional professional and the University of Washington’s certificate in business development. There are many more options than what is listed here.

Work Experience

Required work experience for business development managers needs to be in a related field or position such as sales professional, human development manager, supply chain and logistics, or business administration. Other types of work experience that may be preferred are prior working in the field of the company and the proven ability to cultivate and foster relationships.

Students do not have to wait until they graduate to begin gaining experience in the field. They can seek internships in a department with or under a business development manager. In addition, they can complete job shadowing in several different industries to know what type of environment they are most interested in working in.

Work Schedules

The normal work environment for business development managers is in an office. They typically work from 9 AM to 5 PM Monday through Friday. Extra hours are unusual. Communication both inside and outside the team is needed every day, regardless of the specific applications.

Travel is a requirement in many business development managers’ job descriptions. This is because networking is such an important part of the job. Thus, their job evaluation is highly contingent on the number of sales and return clients they bring to the company. With proven success, they are often given flexibility in how and when they work.

Career Prospects

The business development manager job outlook is 7 percent through the year 2024. They will experience higher growth in industries that have a strong outlook such as in the medical field and lesser growth in struggling industries such as law or manufacturing.

With regards to a business development manager salary, the median wage is $105,830 dollars. However, there are fields that have higher medians and fields that have lower medians. The top paying fields are computer and peripheral equipment manufacturing, oil and gas extraction, software publishing, communications equipment manufacturing, and for the federal government.

To find related jobs, you can search a variety of job websites. In addition, Alchemy regularly posts jobs.


All things considered, a business development manager job description shows that they are essential for companies. This is because they are key to building a profitable and sustainable business. If you enjoy working with others and showing the value of your work, then this could be a smart career decision. It is a competitive market and those who have the most relevant experience and skills will be desirable. Another influential position in the business world that you might want to consider is that of a Purchasing Manager.

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