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VP and Director

Is a VP Position Higher than a Director?

Different companies have different titles for their employees, whether senior management or C-suite. So understanding the roles and hierarchy can be confusing and daunting. And yet, understanding the roles of your seniors is critical. Among the top management positions, the vice president or VP and director are often misunderstood for the work they do, their responsibilities, etc., while both are, in fact, usually considered senior management.

First it’s important to understand what each title means.

Director

Typically a director heads a department or a vertical. They lead managers who have teams under them. They are also usually restricted to a particular area of function in larger companies, while smaller companies might have a general director who leads managers of all departments since there might not be multiple managers in each division to manage. But being on the ‘board of directors’ has a completely different meaning. That kind of director is above the vice president and the C-suite as well.

Vice President

If On the other hand, a VP or vice president is one of the top 2 or 3 leaders of the organization. In some instances, their position depends on the other top level positions, but in most companies, the VP manages the overall functioning of the company. They also are usually in charge of implementing new policies and strategies that work towards the goals of the company and meet with the board of directors regularly. While this might be the role of a VP at mid to large size companies, even larger companies might have a vice president for each department. The heads of each department might be titled vice president. In which case they probably have multiple positions above vice president as well, such as, assistant VP or senior VP.

Director: roles and responsibilities

Since a director manages a department in a company, their roles vary depending on the department. However, there are some common responsibilities;

  • Leading managers and overseeing their projects
  • Reviewing employee performance
  • Developing new policies and strategies for their department
  • Implementing departmental policies changes
  • Developing department budgets, sales, and sometimes even payroll
  • Making sure things run smoothly

Vice president: roles and responsibilities

A vice president’s role is a little more dependent on the size of the company and the company itself. Keeping those factors in mind, in some companies a VP works as an assistant to the CEO when implementing strategy and policy. In other companies, a VP is tasked with duties such as;

  • Overseeing daily activity and productivity
  • Maintaining the company’s public image in the media
  • Illustrating overall budgets and goals for the director and managers
  • Working with the CEO and board of directors to uphold the company’s policies, strategies, and goals
  • Leading the company’s internal culture
  • Constantly reviewing the company strategy and innovations to make sure it’s beneficial for the company

The difference

In most companies that have both VP and director positions, the vice president is the director’s direct senior. In some companies where there are levels within the vice presidency, that might vary. But the vice president is at a higher position in a company that has both. So typically, a vice president will discuss company goals with the board and CEO and develop a strategy and policies for the director and their team to implement. In terms of salaries too, vice presidents take home a larger sum than directors.

For the most part, in most companies, directors have a more tactical job, while vice presidents function more strategically. Directors usually report to the VP, who sets targets and goals for the director to implement by guiding and directing their team of managers.

Summary

Q. What is the main difference between a VP and director?

A.Typically a director heads a department or a vertical. On the other hand, a VP or vice president is one of the top 2 or 3 leaders of the organization. So usually the director reports to the VP.

 

Q. What is the fundamental difference between the role of a VP and director?

A. Directors usually have a more tactical job, while vice presidents function more strategically.

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