Often, as a business owner, we may ponder what’s the best title for us. If we have a board of directors and / or multiple owners, that decision may be made by committee. You can suggest, but others weigh in on the final decision. However, if you are the majority owner or perhaps, the 100% owner, the decision regarding your job title may require some personal thought.
The title I’ve typically used
I’ve typically used the title “President” for my businesses. This is my personal preference for businesses that have under $10 million in revenue. With a smaller business, I spend much more time doing more hands-on work (i.e., implementing) than I do strategizing and pursuing thought leadership. I also think people should feel really special when they meet the CEO. Therefore, if everyone meets and continually interacts with the CEO, the CEO is either a too-involved micromanager or the company is very small! In my perception, the president straddles the strategy and implementation role, so meeting the president is great, but not the same.
What I say regarding what I do
When people ask me what I do, I tell them I help business owners tap resources to build high cash flow, high value businesses. I can do many things so I prefer not to pigeonhole myself. As an entrepreneur, small business owner, and private business, real estate, and stock market investor, I drive cash flow and business value for myself. But I also drive cash flow and business value for many others in this role (especially with my current business!). Admittedly, when people just want a short answer, I say I am a serial entrepreneur, investor and management/funding expert. (I’ll sometimes add “athlete, world traveler, well-rounded human being”.)
One little comment: The only reason why I don’t want to pigeonhole myself is because I’ve seen several entrepreneurs/business owners whose businesses went bust lose it. In Georgia, there were a number of suicides among home builders and real estate developers in the midst of the financial crisis, and a far larger number that experienced serious depression. If your entire identity is wrapped up in being a business owner, you will suffer mightily when that identity is seriously challenged.
What about you? What job title did you or your owner/investor group select for you? Please share in the comments below.