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The owner of an enterprise is called the entrepreneur. An entrepreneur is a person who manages a big or small business. The word “enterprise” means an organization may be either a commercial, nonprofit, or state-owned organization that internally provides goods and services to external customers or other organizations.
There are different types of entrepreneurship in the business world, including private entrepreneurship as in self-employment; entrepreneurship for profit; equity entrepreneurship as in venture capitalism; and social entrepreneurship to address social challenges such as poverty or climate change.
Just as job titles, there are many business owner titles that heads of organizations use. The most appropriate title depends on the size of your organization, the services you offer, and the management structure. Having a suitable business owner title is important to give your potential clients and partners crucial information about your company structure and size.
This article discusses some of the most commonly used and suitable business owner titles to help you decide the most appropriate title for your situation.
Chief Executive Officer (CEO)
The CEO is the leader of an organization and is responsible for the overall management. The CEO oversees all aspects of the organization and takes ultimate responsibility for organization performance.
The role of the CEO typically entails delegating duties to other employees consistently; therefore, a CEO has to find the right professionals for every position in their organization. However, CEOs for large organizations rarely own the respective organizations. In most cases, they answer to a board of directors, which can dismiss them if the organizational results are unsatisfactory.
Although the CEO title is usually used for large companies, you can use it even if you head a smaller company. However, it can confuse clients and business partners.
The owner of a company is responsible as the final responsible head of an organization. A business owner holds full legal and financial ownership of a business, whether a big or small business. The full legal and financial ownership gives you the right to transfer, sell, or share your business with another person or entity without limitations or restrictions.
However, the title business owner does not show the role of that respective person within the organization’s managerial structure: some business owners do not play an active role in their company’s operations.
The founder of a company is the person who started the business. The founder usually has all the intellectual property rights and may have accumulated capital from many sources. However, an example where financing is not necessary is if you are self-employed.
The co-founder of a company is usually someone who has started the business with you and shares ownership of it with you. Sometimes there can be multiple co-founders in one firm, but in rare cases, there may only be one co-founder.
Unlike titles like CEO or business owner, this title cannot be transferred from one individual to another, as founding an organization is an event that only happens once in the life of an organization.
A managing director (MD) is a company’s CEO with limited liabilities. An MD is appointed and removed by the board of directors or the business owners, unlike a CEO usually employed by their organization.
The role of an MD is different from that of an owner, as they usually have less control over the day-to-day operations than an owner would. In most cases, an MD has to report to the board of directors, who can dismiss them at any time if they are dissatisfied with their performance.
The MD can be referred to interchangeably as either CEO or MD, depending on the country and organizational structure. The titles of MD and CEO are used mainly for large organizations due to the importance of their roles. However, the title MD is more suitable than CEO for a small business, as the latter may be unrealistic due to organization size.
The president is an executive-level employee of an organization and is usually responsible for the development and growth of a company. A president can also represent the company at events, such as being a representative at conferences or tours, to give the company a professional image.
The title has replaced other titles such as administrator, director, or manager in many countries. It indicates the importance of the position within an organization because it only exists one time during its life cycle, and “president” is often seen as referring to leaders who are autocrats.
A director is a position within an organization and is often referred to as a shareholders’ representative. Directors are usually appointed by the company’s owners and can be removed (or replaced) at any time.
Directors are responsible for acting in the shareholders’ best interests and are accountable for their actions before them. The directors’ duties include ensuring that company policies are being met, appointing the CEO, hiring and overseeing staff members, approving major business transactions, and turning ideas into profit-making opportunities for their respective organizations.
The level of authority that this title implies varies with the company’s structure, but some directors often report directly to the CEO. Some of the most commonly used titles include technical director, director of operations, creative director, executive director, and MD.
Managing Partner or Managing Member
An administrator is a person who manages the affairs of an organization. They are responsible for managing all the financial, legal, human, and technical aspects. Administrators act autonomously to complete their duties in their respective organizations.
An administrator’s most important duty is to ensure that the company is always making the right decisions. Administrators are seen as necessary in the governance process because they are responsible for ensuring that other employees and managers are working following company policies, procedures, and regulations and conforming to legal responsibilities.
A proprietor is a small business owner/operator who runs the company’s day-to-day operations, staff, and business from their branch office. Sole proprietors are single small business owners legally tied to their companies.
The term “proprietor” does not always refer to a business owner. In some circumstances, it can refer to a partner managing their small business. When referring to an owner of bigger companies, this title is most likely used instead of CEO or managing director as it implies that they are more senior than other partners/employees and have more responsibilities within the company’s operation.
Chief Operating Officer (COO)
A COO is a senior business executive overseeing an organization’s day-to-day operations. The COO reports directly to the CEO or MD and has equal authority to that of the owners.
The primary responsibilities of this title are to oversee all business operations and ensure that the company’s financial books are in good condition. The COO is in charge of administration, HR, marketing, purchasing, product development, infrastructure, and other centralized tasks such as human resources (HR) and finance. They are also responsible for ensuring that employees fulfill their roles within the company’s operation as per its policies.
These are the most common business owner titles used to refer to enterprise owners. In some cases, titles have been combined due to their similarity or have merged with others over time. For example, the title “administrator” is often used interchangeably with “manager,” and the title “president” is sometimes used interchangeably with “CEO” and “director.”
However, there are specific titles for different jobs depending on the type of organization you’re working for. This article provides a list of the most common titles used in today’s businesses to help you get the most suitable business owner title. Do not hesitate to contact us at Kennected to generate new leads and help grow their businesses.