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full form of CEO

CEO Full Form (What is the Full Form of CEO?)

The full form of CEO stands for Chief Executive Officer. A Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of a company is the leader of the corporation and the principal decision-maker of the company. Metaphorically speaking, a CEO is effectively the captain of the ship.
A CEO only reports to either the chairman of the company or the board of directors, depending on the nature and shareholding structure of the company.


  • Responsibilities of a CEO
  • Who does a CEO report to?
  • Who appoints a CEO?
  • Top CEOs in India
  • Top Worldwide CEOs
  • Difference between CEO and CFO
  • Difference between CEO and COO
  • CEO compared to Board of Directors

Responsibilities of a CEO

As mentioned above, the CEO is the principal decision maker of the corporation. His roles and responsibilities include the following:


  • Leadership: A CEO is the leader of the corporation. He is the apex decision maker of the company. Critical decisions concerning the growth, profitability, stability, and culture are made by the CEO.
  • Setting Company Policy: It is the responsibility of a CEO to setup the fundamental company policy. Most important company policies include employment policies, health and safety policies, financial policies, and more.
  • Allocation of Resources: A company may have a variety of projects running at the same time. All of these projects require capital. It is the task of the CEO to ensure the success of projects with effective allocation of resources (i.e capital).
  • Maintaining Company Image: The CEO has to maintain a positive image of the company to the outside world. CEOs must poise themselves and act in accordance with socially acceptable principals.
  • Master Communicator: A CEO must be a master at communication and delegation. How else can he hope to manage a company with hundreds or even thousands of employees?
  • Mergers and Acquisitions: Mergers and acquisitions play a big part in the growth and expansion of a corporation. It is the responsibility of the CEO to identify potential M&A opportunities and execute on them effectively.

Who does a CEO report to?

A CEO will typically report to the board of directors, as it is the board of directors that have approved the selection of the CEO. The board of directors are made up of the largest shareholders of the company, and it is the responsibility of the CEO to implement the strategy and vision of the board of directors.

Quite simply, the board may take certain high-level decisions after board meetings and the CEO will follow-through on these decisions.

It is also important to note that reporting structure of a CEO depends on the type of company. A large public company’s CEO may report to the chairman of the board of directors but a small privately owned company may report directly to the owner of the company.

There are at times when the CEO himself is the owner of a privately held company and the majority shareholder. Therefore, it is important to understand the hierarchy within a company to find out who does its CEO report to.

Who appoints a CEO?

When it comes to a public company, the board of directors appoints a CEO. It is the task of the board to discuss amongst each other and decide on the most suitable candidate for the role of CEO. The board may also formulate a CEO search committee for this task.

When it comes to a private company, the appointment of CEOs is typically more nuanced. The appointment is predicated on the ownership structure of the privately held company. For instance, in small privately held companies, the founders can directly appoint the CEO without much oversight.

Large private companies may also have a board of directors that are made up of the largest shareholders of the company, and it would fall within the responsibilities of the board to appoint the CEO.

Top CEOs in India

As of 2023, these are the top CEOs in India along with their salaries.



Salary (Cr)

Mukesh Ambani

Reliance Industries

₹15 cr

Rajesh Gopinathan


₹25.77 cr

Salil Parekh


₹56.45 cr

Sanjiv Mehta

Hindustan Unilever

₹22.36 cr

Dilip Shanghvi

Sun Pharma

₹3 cr

Suresh Narayanan

Nestle India

₹17.1 cr

Vinay Prakash

Adani Enterprises

₹52.25 cr

Gopal Vittal

Bharti Airtel

₹9.6 cr

Uday Kotak

Kotak Mahindra Bank

₹1 (token)

C Vijayakumar

HCL Technologies

₹123 cr

Ignatius Navil Noronha

Avenue Supermarts

₹4.5 cr

Thierry Delaporte


₹82 cr

Puneet Chhatwal

Indian Hotels

₹18.2 cr

C.K Venkataraman


₹11.44 cr

Sashidhar Jagdishan


₹10.55 cr

Top Worldwide CEOs

As of 2023, these are the top global CEOs with their salaries.




Elon Musk


$11.8 billion

Robert Scaringe

Rivian Automotive

$1.15 billion

Tim Cook


$484 million

Peter Rawlinson

Lucid Motors

$575 million

Vladimir Tenev


$399 million

Jen-Hsun Huang


$292.25 million

Reed Hastings


$252 million

Marc Benioff


$234.64 million

Stephen Shwarzman


$253 million

Sundar Pichai


$242 million

Safra Catz


$138 million

Bill Ready


$123 million

Difference between CEO and CFO

A CEO is the top most executive of a company. Everyone apart from the board of directors come under his leadership. A CFO is generally appointed by a CEO and is tasked with handling the financial responsibilities of a company like budgeting and financial planning.


  • Hierarchy: A CEO reports to either the founder of the company or the board of directors. A CFO generally reports to the CEO of the corporation.
  • Role and Responsibilities: A CEO has the broadest role in a company. He is responsible for a variety of activities like managing day to day activities of the company, handling investors, financial planning, setting corporate culture, handling media, and beyond. A CFO is appointed by the CEO with the intention to delegate financial work of the corporation. A CFO deals with financial planning, budgeting, financial risk assessment and management, financial reporting, and beyond.
  • Authority: A CEO has authority over a CFO. The board of directors have an authority over the CEO.

Difference between CEO and COO

The CEO (Chief Executive Officer) and COO (Chief Operating Officer) are both high-level executives of a corporation. The distinctions lie in their focus, authority and responsibilities.


  • Responsibilities: As mentioned before, the CEO has the broadest role in the company. It is the CEO’s responsibility to bring the vision of the board of directors to reality. A COO is appointed by the CEO and is tasked with the day to day operations management of the corporation. It is the task of the COO to ensure that day to day company operations are smooth and efficient.
  • Authority: A CEO is the primary decision maker of the company. A COO is a decision maker when it comes to operational activities of a company. The authority of the COO is given by the CEO.

Difference between CEO and Board of Directors

A CEO is tasked with bringing the vision of the board of directors to life. It is the task of the CEO to engage in day to day activities that move the company forward in accordance with the policies and strategies set forth by the board of directors.
Mentioned within are some of the most important differences between a CEO and board of directors:


  • Authority: The board of directors appoint the CEO and have authority over a CEO. The board, if they choose can terminate the CEO. The CEO reports to the board of directors.
  • Role and Responsibilities: It is the role of the board of directors to do what is in the interest of shareholders. They setup high-level policies, strategies and vision that attempts to enrich shareholder value. The CEO is selected by the board to be responsible for bringing this vision to life.

Author Bio

This article is written by Team, an independent website that writes about insurance, finance, health, and more. Our writers have a wealth of knowledge, experience, and degrees in the fields of insurance, finance, economics, and beyond.

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