Executive Director

Head up the board of a company.

Quick Stats


Salary Range
~ $165,000

Data from U.S. Department of Labor

What do Executive Directors do?

As an Executive Director, you’re top dog on the board of Directors. You oversee an entire company, carrying out one of the most important roles to undertake when managing an organization.

The board of Directors is a group of people who jointly captain and make decisions about a company. They have a lot of power when it comes to devising policies and approving budgets, but as the Executive Director, you’re the one with the gavel in hand. Each member may have different interests and hopes for the business, but the Executive Director knows how to negotiate between them and allows many different minds to produce one strong plan.

Much of your day is spent going over paperwork and familiarizing yourself with your staff, departmental budgets, and company assets, but that’s only to make sure you have a strong understanding of your company. You have a vision about how your organization should be run, and you stick to it.

People must be able to look up to your decisions. It’s important in this position that you remain more than just a figurehead tottering at the top of a great heap of minds. You have the ability to make sure that your company adheres to ethical practices, that it doesn’t harm the environment, and that all your customers are safe and happy.

Instead of being overwhelmed by responsibility, you relish it. The reins of something large, diverse, and fruitful are in your hands. It’s tough to be the one at the top of the pyramid, but from here, your every decision affects how the business is run. Your good calls can bring a small company out of the rat race and help it rise up to its full potential.

Should I be an Executive Director?

You should have a bachelor's degree or higher and share these traits:
  • Trustworthy: You are known for your personal integrity and honesty.
  • Leader: You're good at taking charge, giving directions, and inspiring other people.
  • Calm Under Pressure: You keep your cool when dealing with highly stressful situations.

  • Also known as: Private Sector Executive, Sustainability Executive Director

    How to become an Executive Director

    Most Executive Directors have a Bachelor's degree. Chart?chd=s:aca9yh&chl=|certificate+%283%25%29||bachelor%27s+%2864%25%29|master%27s+%2825%25%29|doctorate+%288%25%29&cht=p3&chs=466x180&chxr=0,0,64
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