Director (business)

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Intel Board of Directors

A director is a person from a group of managers who leads or supervises a particular area of a company, program, or project.[1] Companies that use this term often have many directors spread throughout different business functions or roles (e.g. director of human resources).[2] The director usually reports directly to a vice president or to the CEO directly in order to let them know the progress of the organisation. Large organizations also sometimes have assistant directors or deputy directors. Director commonly refers to the lowest level of executive in an organization, but many large companies use the title of associate director more frequently. Some companies also have regional directors and area directors. Regional directors are present in companies that are organised by location and have their departments under that. They are responsible for the operations for their particular country. Though directors are the first stage in the executive team, area directors are seen as higher up, based on their area of control.

Corporate Titles[edit]

Corporate titles or commonly known as business titles are titles given to individuals within a business depending on the role that they have and which also portray the duties and responisibilites within that specific role. The larger the business, the more titles that are present I.e. CEO's, CCO's and Executive directors.

Those that have higher roles within a company such as the elite positions they are often referred to as "chief" and those that have lower roles within the company are employees that simply carry out day to day tasks. There are many titles within a company such as Executive director, Managing director, Company director and chairman.

The corporate structure consists of four key areas:


In the USA, it is understood that by law it is a requirement for the country to create specific positions within every business/organisation such as Treasurer, President and Secretary. American businesses are usually controlled by a Chief Executive Officer (CEO). However, in other businesses, the CEO also has the title of a president and both play different roles such as the president is in charge of internal management whereas the CEO is in charge of external relations. In the UK, a managing director is usually linked to a role of a CEO. The roles are similar and to some extent the same however the only difference being the corporate title.[4]

Structuring a Board of Directors[edit]

Depending upon the size of an organisation or a company, the number of directors can vary. Start-up companies can have a single director which is the minimun for a private limited company according to the law. However as organisations and businesses expand, the number of directors can increase because more tasks and responsibilities become present. For example, if the company expands and has more than one department such as Finance, sales, marketing, production and IT, then the business may form a board of directors which each director overseeing a department and maintaining full responsibility within that department.

A board of directors ensures that a clearly outlined structure is in place which will help the business to work much more efficiently.

Larger businesses and organisations will form a clear board structure as the following:

* Chairman- This particular role within the company is often a non executive role who also has the task of overseeing the entire business or organisation.

* Managing Director- A managing director is employed by the business, often by the chairman. Other roles include running the business and producing salaries. The managing director manages the board of directors and oversees the performance of the business thus reporting back to the chairman.

* A group of executive directors - A group of executive directors each play a significant role within the company. They maintain full responsibility of their respective departments such as Finance, Marketing and Sales. Each director manages their department ensuring that tasks and objectives are being met. Executive directors also sit on the board.

* Non-executive directors - They advise the business in terms of proposing different forms of strategy and they also decide remuneartion of the executive directors.

Having a clear structure within the business has a positive impact on the employees and it also helps to organise the business. By having a team of executive directors, employees can report to their executive directors if a problem or an issue occurs.[5]

Gender partition within Boards of Directors[edit]

Women still seems to be a major issue within the executive roles of a business. Over the years, statistics show that the number of women within an executive role is lacking. An analysis has revealed that London has the lowest percentage of female directors. Blue Sheep carried out the research and complied data which revealed that only 30% of company director roles are occupied by women. In comparison to other UK cities such as Lancaster (37%) and Dorchester (37%), the capital city is falling behind.[6]

Lord Davies set a target for FTSE 100 that boards should include 25% of women representation on the board by 2015. In 2010 only 12.5% of the members of a board were totalled by women of FTSE 100 companies whilst a huge percentage of male representation was 87.5%. Although an increase from 9.4% in 2004, ultimately the progress haf been slow.

Lord Davies has also stated that corporate boards tend to perform better where a range of females and males are present and people that come from different backgrounds. Research has displayed that strong stock market growth amongst other European companies is certain to take place when there is an increase of the percentage in women in senior management teams. Figures showing that the higher women percentage present within companies especially on boards were found to outdo competitors with a 42% higher return in sales and 66% higher return on invested capital and 53% return on higher equity.

In another report by Equality and Human Rights Commission (2008), based on the findings it was suggested that it could take up to 70 years for some of the largest UK companies and organisations to achieve an all balanced boardroom of male and female directors.[7]

Managing Director[edit]

A managing director of a company is assigned to a important role within a company or an organization. A managing director oversees the performance of the company on a whole and then has the duty to report back to the chairman or board of directors. The chairman or board of directors may set daily and weekly set targets which should be met by the employees that are working within their respective departments and the managing director has the role to report their progress so the board can evaluate the progress to see if targets have been achieved. .[8]

Roles include[edit]

Executive Director[edit]

An executive director within a company or an organization is usually from the board of directors and oversees a specific department within the organization such as Marketing, Finance, Production and IT. The Executive Director must ensure that all employees within his/her department are achieving the objectives which have been set and must also make daily decisions within the department.[9]

Roles include[edit]

Company Director[edit]

A company Director is one of the employees within a group of managers who maintains a prolific role within an organisation and usually has the higher role within an organisation. This is mainly due to the fact that is them who decide on how to control the business and also make the final and key decisions.[12]

Roles include[edit]

The company director(s) is mainly responsible for:

Finance Director[edit]

A Finance director oversees and maintains full responsibility of the business's finance department. He/she is also responsible in ensuring that the chief executive and the board receive the flow of the financial information. Other responsibilities include producing anuall accounts, maintaining control of complete transactions, setting out financial targets and budgets for the business and also managing the companies policies. The finance director must also report to the managing director.[15]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Director, definitions". 
  2. ^ Heathfield, Susan M. "Sample Human Resources Director Job Description". 
  3. ^ "Corporate titles". Corporate jobs hierarchy. 2014-10-22. Retrieved 2014-10-22. 
  4. ^ "USA". Wikipedia. 2014-10-22. Retrieved 2014-10-22. 
  5. ^ "Structuring a board of directors". 2014-10-22. Retrieved 2014-10-22. 
  6. ^ "Women in leadership". The Guardian. Lottie O Connor. 30 June 2014. Retrieved 2014-10-23. 
  7. ^ Mervyn, Davies (February 2011). "Women on Boards 2011". Lord Davies. Retrieved 2014-10-23. 
  8. ^ "Role of the managing director". IOD. Retrieved 20 October 2014. 
  9. ^ "Executive Director definiton". The free dictionary. Retrieved 20 October 2014. 
  10. ^ "getting the right people". Retrieved 20 October 2014. 
  11. ^ "Role of a director". GOV.UK. 2014-10-20. 
  12. ^ "Company Director definition". 2014-10-20. 
  13. ^ "directors duties and responsibilities.". IOD. Retrieved 2014-10-20. 
  14. ^ "Running a limited company". GOV.UK. Retrieved 2014-10-20. 
  15. ^ "The role of the Finance Director". 2014-10-22. Retrieved 2014-10-22.