There are diverse levels of management in a company, depending on the company’s size and type. You can also identify each level via each person’s title or responsibilities.
For example, when you walk into a company and meet the CEO, you know you have met the person heading the company or that branch.
The title “CEO” is given to an individual occupying the highest-ranking office in the company. However, note that a CEO and owner are two different positions. Unfortunately, most people use the word “CEO and owner” interchangeably, which shouldn’t be the case.
You’ll understand the similarities, differences and responsibilities of a CEO and business owner after reading this post.
Who Is A CEO (Chief Executive Officer)?
The full meaning of a CEO is Chief Executive Office and it’s a title. Only one person in some organizations or branches bears this title. However, in some large corporations, more than one CEO exists.
Is there any firm that has multiple CEOs? Yes, there is. An example is the online eyeglass retail company Warby Parker.
In some large corporations, all c-level executives are under the CEO and report to the person in that position. By the way, it’s the highest-ranking executive position in a company.
In other words, the CEO is the head of all the executives in the company. Additionally, this title is common in large corporations or publicly traded firms.
Anyone can own a business, but a CEO has to be someone that can bring value to the company. The person is expected to possess many years of experience working in high-ranking positions (preferably past experience as CEO of a similar or related company) and boasts higher qualifications.
No company’s board will be careless enough to give their company to an inexperienced person to manage. They won’t do that out of emotions, given how much they have invested in the business.
Another interesting thing about a company’s CEO is the person’s role. Note that the Chief Executive Officer doesn’t get involved in the business’s day-to-day operations.
For example, when you enter a bank setting, you won’t find the CEO sitting behind the desk, issuing or receiving cash from customers. These are roles other lower ranking executives or employees in the company perform. The CEO’s role is to ensure the business operates smoothly.
The CEOs’ major concern is to ensure employees have the support and materials they need to perform their jobs satisfactorily. They also serve as a bridge between the board of directors and employees, helping to create long-term plans for the company.
Tasks CEO Perform In An Organization
What role does the CEO play in a company? Do they just sit around quietly and let the executives do their thing? No, they don’t.
Though CEOs don’t directly involve themselves in the company’s day-to-day operations, they get involved somehow. They ensure the company runs smoothly, as the board would have wanted.
Here are some of the other roles that CEOs play in an organization.
1: Manages business operations:
The CEOs ensure employees get access to the resources they need to discharge their duties satisfactorily. They also ensure the resources allocated to employees are used for the purpose they were meant for.
2: Relate with the board of directors and communicate their ideas to personnel within the company.
CEOs maintain good relationships with the board of directors. They often appear in board meetings and serve as a bridge between the board of directors and personnel working for the company.
They outline the company’s goals, strategies, and results to the board of directors. But their jobs don’t end there. They still have to communicate the board member’s decisions to the company’s personnel and ensure they are implemented.
3: Make public announcements and interact with clients on the company’s behalf:
CEOs relay issues within the company to the board of directors and the public. They serve as the company’s public representative.
CEOs engage investors and clients on the company’s behalf. They ensure the company is always seen in a good light and remains attractive to investors or open to business opportunities.
4: Create long-term goals and strategies for the company:
Chief Executive Officers play numerous vital roles. One of them is creating achievable goals for the company. They also create strategies to achieve the goal within the set time, using the available resources or making recommendations to the board.
Who Is A Business Owner?
What does it mean to call someone a business/company owner or owner of a business?
When you say someone is a business owner or company owner, it means the person owns the business. The owner may have the largest share in a private company with multiple investors.
On the other hand, when a person owns everything in a company, then they are the sole owner of that business.
You can also regard the business owner as the founder. Owners have control over their business finances, day-to-day operations, sales, and marketing.
What A Business Owner Do
Business owners’ roles differ from CEOs. However, industry and personal preference determines a business owner’s task.
Here are some of the things a business owner does.
1: Get involved in sales and marketing:
The business owner can function as the sales representative and marketer, pending when someone is hired for the position. In most cases, the owner may choose to function in the sales and marketing department even though someone has been hired for the position.
Businesses can only survive when they generate enough sales or meet their sales goals. That’s why the marketing and sales department is considered the livewires of a business.
The business owners set the direction the company’s marketing and sales takes. They can make presentations, close deals, and source for clients too.
They can also run the company’s social media pages and create strategies for marketing campaigns online and offline.
3: The business owner operates as a customer support agent:
Customer support skills are essential for business owners. The reason is that businesses in their early stages have meager resources or may not have the financial capacity to hire a customer service agent since the business just started.
In this case, the business owner has to function as the customer service agent, making contacts with new and existing customers, pending when someone is hired to take over.
4: Human resource duties:
Have you ever attended an interview where the interviewer is the company’s owner? It’s rampant among small business owners or a company that just started.
Business owners handle their business’ human resource department, pending when someone takes over. They handle recruitment, training, and payment of employees.
Business owners should handle their business’ human resource dealings in the initial stage of the business. However, if there’s an opportunity to hire someone, business owners must do all they can to hire the right person.
5: Perform finance and accounting duties:
Business owners do not only source for capital to start the business. They also handle the business finances themselves.
CEO vs. Owner: Key Similarities
Let’s focus on the similarities between a CEO and a business owner. The first similarity is regarding their traits. Both require similar traits to succeed in their various positions. These include interpersonal communication and critical thinking skills.
Additionally, both can play similar roles. They can hire employees for higher-level positions for their respective companies.
A Handy Tip: A CEO can also be the company’s owner. In other words, owners can decide to make themselves CEO. An example is the social media platform Twitter. Elon Musk owns the company, and he’s the current CEO.
CEO vs. Owner: What Are The Differences?
Here are the differences between a CEO and a business owner.
When you look at the roles CEO and business owner plays, you’ll understand the differences between both positions. A CEO is hired by the company to occupy the position, though some have to work their way up before being promoted to the highest office.
However, CEOs are hired to manage the business’s vision and they offer a clear direction for the business.
The business owners can serve in any position and decide when to hire a capable individual to take over. They can decide the role they want to perform, but a CEO has clearly defined roles.
CEOs position is a high-ranking position in an organization. However, let’s not forget the CEO is just an employee. Most CEOs may have shares in the companies they’re working for, but that doesn’t take the employee status off them.
On the other hand, the owner refers to an individual that owns the entire business. The individual decides who to hire and how long their holidays will be and controls the business’ finances.
3: Who they report to:
CEOs are the highest executive position in an organization, but that doesn’t make them less prone to sacking. Other employees report to the CEO, though the individual occupying the position isn’t the main boss. The company has a board of directors or a specific owner the CEO reports to.
Chief Executive Officers are standing in for the board members. They serve as a link between the employees and the board.
So, CEOs are prone to sacking. In other words, the board can decide to lay a CEO off. They do the board’s bidding and takes instructions from them.
The business owner has absolute control over the business. People in this category decide who to fire, when, and why.
Employees can report to the owner if the person is available. But if the business owner has human resource personnel, all complaints will be channeled to that person.
4: Job goal:
A CEO’s main goal is to ensure employees execute their tasks to meet the organization’s primary short and long-term objectives.
Owners also ensure all employees perform their tasks as required. In addition, they manage everyone’s daily responsibilities.
The business owner ensures finances are used prudently. Thus, they must operate as finance professionals, pending when someone else takes up the role.
In larger corporations, there’s a finance department in charge of the business’s finance.
You can see from this CEO vs. owner comparison that both positions have similarities and differences. However, a CEO is a titled position and the highest executive position in the company.
The word “owner” denotes someone who owns and controls a business. The owner can also be called the founder of the business. Business owners can decide to make themselves CEOs. An example of this scenario is Twitter. Elon Musk bought the company and made himself CEO.