What Are the Different Levels of the Management Pyramid?

Levels of management include top-level, middle-level and first-level managers. There are differences in management roles and tasks across the different management levels. There are typically few mangers at the top level and more middle managers and first-level managers.

Top-level managers or senior executives hold titles such as COO, CFO and CEO. Top-level managers set organizational goals and direct the company to achieve them. They don't typically direct day-to-day firm activities, but their decisions affect the entire firm. Most top managers have master's degrees in business administration or other related fields.

Job titles for middle-level managers include plant manager, general manager, divisional manager and regional manager. They have more involvement in day-to-day workings of companies and assist and motivate first-line managers to fulfil set objectives. Middle-level managers supervise large or small groups of employees, depending on the size of the business.

First-level managers hold job titles such as department manager, office manager, shift supervisor and store manager. They are responsible for managing day-to-day activities of employees who offer services or produce products. First-level managers usually have a strong influence on companies, although they do not set goals for the organization. Many first-level managers have associate degrees, trade school degrees or certificates, or bachelor’s degrees. They are also largely responsible for employee performance, motivation and retention.