Job Descriptions of a CEO and a COO

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The responsibilities of chief executive officer and chief operating officer vary in similarity depending on the situation of a company. Generally, the CEO is responsible for formulating a business plan, while the COO executes it.

CEO

  • The CEO is responsible for overseeing all company departments, establishing company culture and vision, executive management, and fundraising. In larger companies, the CEO can act as a "face" for the company in a public relations role.

COO

  • The COO is responsible for executing the day-to-day strategies of executive management and the board of directors.

Reports

  • Organizational structure can vary, but generally the CEO, COO and all executive management report to the board of directors. Executive management such as the CMO and CFO can report to either or both.

Company Life Cycle

  • Depending on the size, history and organizational structure of a company, these positions can be interchangeable or not exist at all.

Fundraising

  • As the lines of responsibility for these roles are often blurred, fundraising is the one responsibility a CEO would have that a COO would not.

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