Becoming a Campaign Manager - Political Consultant
Campaign Manager Career Overview
Becoming a political campaign manager can be an exciting career. A campaign manager often works for a period of time while a hopeful political candidate runs for office. A campaign manager will work long hours, seeing to many aspects of the entire campaign process.
It is the campaign manager’s job to see to it that the candidate is presented to their constituency in a manner worthy of election. A campaign manager has the job of coordinating and managing many people, resources, and schedules revolving around the publicity of a candidate.
The job may allow a person to work side by side with influencers, and officials, as well as media personnel and celebrities. Depending on the position of the politician, a campaign manager may also travel the campaign trail with the candidate.
Specializations and Places of Work
Campaign managers may specialize in one or more levels of politics. At the highest federal level, a campaign manager may also have an appointment as a party advisor or counselor. They may also work in public relations for a particular party.
Many campaign managers will work at the local and county level. These careers may be limited to part-time work with very little budget for salaries. In this case, the campaign manager may hold down another job to supplement their income.
Roles and Duties of Campaign Managers
The roles and duties of a campaign manager are never the same in the daily operation of campaign headquarters. One day a campaign manager may organize a rally, the next they may see to the printing and production of publicity ads with the help of their staff. The overall job of a campaign manager is to launch a successful, overall campaign strategy that helps win the election.
A campaign manager will lead a candidate’s staff, overseeing the work of the other campaign workers and recruit donors, volunteers, and raise funds. A good campaign manager might also help write speeches for their party, as well as craft position papers. While some campaign managers are short term, working only until a politician is elected, others, such as the president’s campaign manager will go on as a consultant long after the election is over.
Political Consultant Education and Training
A campaign manager must know how the political system works in order to effectively design a winning campaign. This also requires they have a unique skill set. While a degree is not a requirement, it is certainly a benefit, and without it, might prohibit a person from landing a great position.
A campaign manager must be able to think on their feet. They must work well under pressure. They also must excel in oral and written communication. Diplomacy, negotiations, management, and leadership are also key job requirements.
One degree that trains a person to become a campaign manager is a degree in political science
. This degree will teach a student about every facet of the political system. Classes include material on policy, legislation, diplomacy, law, and international relations. Adding courses in communication and public relations are also advised.
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Salary Information and Job Outlook
The salary for a campaign manager is varied. Simplyhiired.com shows the median income for a campaign manager in the United States is $58,000. The top of the pay scale is $90,000 with the bottom at $38,000. Of course, these numbers can change depending on whom you are campaigning for. Slate.com reported that one top-level manager earned a $200,000 salary from a recent campaign.
The job outlook for campaign managers is tied directly to election years and positions up for reelection. Campaign managers who work during a losing election may create a job opening if they are let go, opening the position for someone new. As long as there are politicians, the job market for campaign managers will remain a viable career choice.