Anyone aspiring to further their career through management roles should be familiar with the Chartered Management Institute (CMI). This awarding body defines and maintains what excellence in management means, and their suite of qualifications formally defines these skills.

In this blog post, we’ll introduce the CMI and provide a comprehensive rundown of the course hierarchy they offer. After reading, you’ll understand the role and vision of the CMI, as well as understanding what they can offer you in terms of managerial development.

What is CMI?

CMI stands for the Chartered Management Institute, and it’s a name you’ll see a lot as you progress along your managerial trajectory. The CMI is backed by a unique Royal Charter, making it the only organisation who can award the Chartered Manager status – what they describe as ‘the ultimate management accolade.’

Originally founded to help rebuild British industry after World War 2, the CMI has endeavoured ever since to raise the quality and standard of management in British workplaces. They developed the first diploma in management and have maintained a prominent role in management thought leadership and training.

Their vision is simple: to enable better led and managed organisations. Their mission to achieve; centres on increasing the number and the standard of professionally qualified managers in the UK. This is executed through a structured framework of management qualifications, each representing progressively stronger management skills.

A CMI qualification carries a lot of regard and prestige in today’s workplace, with a Level 8 being considered the Gold Standard of management qualifications.

What are the different CMI leadership levels?

Let’s look at the seven CMI leadership levels and what each represents.

Be aware that the levels awarded by CMI are independent to qualifications awarded by other educational institutions, despite similar numbering systems. 

CMI Level 2

This level is intended for people aspiring for higher managerial positions, who currently work as supervisors, line managers, or similar. You’ll learn about team leading, project management, and other basic managerial concepts.

Course titles at this level include – 

  • Team Leading.
  • Team Leading (Combined).

CMI Level 3

The content and intended audience of CMI Level 3 is the same as Level 2, but with a slightly higher degree of difficulty.

Course titles at this level include – 

  • Coaching and Mentoring.
  • Management (Combined).
  • Principles of Management and Leadership.
  • Project Management.

CMI Level 4

Level 4 is intended for middle managers and looks to develop more advanced management skills. You’ll learn more advanced resource management, recruitment skills, and information management.

Course titles at this level include – 

  • Management and Leadership.
  • NVQ in Management.

CMI Level 5

Level 5 covers the same broad content as Level 4, but at a higher degree of proficiency.

Course titles at this level include – 

  • Project Management.
  • Management and Leadership.
  • Management Coaching and Management.
  • Professional Consulting.
  • NVQ in Management and Leadership.
  • Managing Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion.

CMI Level 6

This level is for senior managers who already have experience in managerial roles, and who are looking to translate organisational strategy into more effective performance.

Course titles at this level include – 

  • Professional Management and Leadership Practice

CMI Level 7

As we’ve seen previously, Level 7 covers the same skills and competencies as Level 6 but at a higher standard.

Course titles at this level include – 

  • Strategic Approaches to Equality Diversity and Inclusion.
  • Strategic Approaches to Health and Wellbeing .
  • Strategic Management and Leadership Practice.
  • Leadership Coaching and Mentoring.
  • Professional Consulting.
  • Entrepreneurial Practice.

CMI Level 8

Considered the Gold Standard of management expertise, the Level 8 qualification can only be awarded by CMI. This qualification is for C-level senior managers who have already attained a high degree of experience and expertise, and who are looking to formalise and build on this foundation.

Course titles at this level include – 

  • Strategic Direction and Leadership.

CMI awards: Award, Certificate, or Diploma?

In each of the levels outlined above, three accreditations are available: Award, Certificate, and Diploma. The depth of the qualification differentiates these courses, along with the amount of time required to complete each.

A CMI Award is short, concise and takes about one to three months to complete. You should expect to invest about 50 – 100 hours of learning to receive a CMI award.

A CMI Certificate provides a more broad set of knowledge and skills and takes about three to six months to complete. This qualification represents between 130 – 200 hours of learning.

A CMI Diploma is comprehensive and extensive, taking anywhere up to a year to complete. You’ll likely spend 370 hours or more doing active learning to achieve this qualification.

How can CMI help my career?

A CMI qualification is an asset to your professional development thanks to the prestige and the calibre of their materials. A CMI Level goes a long way to strengthen your CV and professional portfolio.

As we’ve outlined previously, CMI has designed its qualifications with the express goal of helping aspiring managers to progress from one tier to the next. To study one of their courses is to take a proactive role in your career development and refine a collection of skills that will enhance your employability.

How can In Professional Development help?

We provide high-level training in a range of courses, including several CMI accredited qualifications. We offer group training for independent individuals, currently being held virtually during the era of coronavirus.

We are also proud to offer bespoke in house training courses tailored to the specific needs and aims of organisations. By curating specialised content, we can deliver beneficial training to individual employees and the overarching organisation alike.

More details about our in house bespoke training programmes can be found here.

To conclude…

The CMI is the bearer of management expertise and thought leadership in the United Kingdom. Backed by Royal Charter and active for over 70 years, they have been pivotal in establishing, delivering, and maintaining consistently high standards for management and leadership qualifications.

From introductory Level 2 courses through to Level 8 courses designed for C-level managers, CMI qualifications have something to offer anyone with managerial aspirations.

At In Professional Development, we believe in carrying the torch for top-tier management tuition. We strive to deliver the best course content to help our learners continue along their career trajectory and achieve managerial excellence. Discover the right course for you here.

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