The definition of an executive varies from one company to the next and from one culture to the next. Executive level jobs, on the other hand, typically include company owners and presidents, as well as all “C-level” positions, which often begin with the word “chief.” Vice presidents, as well as other titles that include the words “vice president,” are considered executives. Director-level positions and others may be included in the executive team in some smaller companies with few individuals in these types of roles.
A business owner is almost always regarded as an executive position. This person may be heavily involved in the company’s day-to-day operations. She could also be a “silent executive,” someone who is involved in high-level decisions but isn’t critical to the company’s day-to-day operations.
CEOs (short for “chief executive officer”) are a common moniker for business owners. This is the highest-ranking C-level position, as well as the highest-ranking executive-level job in general. In a private company, the owner usually, but not always, fills this position. In a public company, the board of directors usually appoints this position.
The company’s president is usually the CEO’s second in command. For those unfamiliar with the business world, this can be perplexing because the president is often the highest-ranking official in many governments. Even in business, it’s not uncommon for there to be no official CEO title or for one person to hold both executive level jobs at the same time. The individual is usually referred to as the “president and CEO” in this case.
There could be any number of additional C-level positions in a company. Chief operations officer (COO), chief financial officer (CFO), and chief information officer are the most common (CIO). Chief technology officer (CTO), chief marketing officer (CMO), and chief risk officer are some of the other C-level executive positions (CRO). Other C-level titles may be common in specific industries.
Only C-level executives and the president make up the executive team in some companies. However, in many mid-sized businesses, vice president positions are also considered executive level positions. This includes titles such as junior vice president, associate vice president, assistant vice president, and executive vice president, in addition to the actual vice president job title.
At the top of small businesses, there may only be a president and vice president. Director-level positions may be considered part of the executive team in this case. This could include associate directors and executive directors, but assistant directors are rarely included. A director, on the other hand, is not traditionally thought of as an executive level position in the business world.