Chief Operating Officer (COO)
- May 2, 2019
“Oh My Job” is a web series that helps you learn about specific jobs from the people who do them every day. In this episode, Chief Operating Officer Roxane shares her vision of the profession and talks about daily life at Place.
A COO makes sure that business operations run smoothly on a day-to-day basis and that they are are continuously improving. The role is therefore cross-functional, since the COO acts as the link between a company’s management, services and teams.
A COO is in charge of setting up and maintaining, or modifying, the various processes that teams follow in their work. Because of this, a COO must take into account the strategic decisions of senior management and understand the way in which operations are carried out on the job.
The COO is also responsible for the administration and smooth running of daily operations within the different teams. The role thus involves providing teams with the necessary tools to fulfill their objectives and maintain their independence. To achieve this goal, a COO spends most of his or her time in the field, working with the teams directly.
The precise role of a COO depends on the size of the company and how the teams are structured. It can change over time and depends on the nature of the projects that have been implemented. A COO may even be required to manage projects related to a company’s HR or financial services.
As you will see in our video, a COO takes the helm of numerous operations within a company.
A bachelor’s degree in business, or a related subject, or a MBA are likely to be required.
As this role requires a more seasoned professional, the majority of people in this job, especially in large corporate structures, have been promoted internally.
Since the job of a COO is cross-functional, the position requires both curiosity and versatility. A successful COO has the capacity to understand the problems of various teams and find a suitable solution for each. As the main person overseeing a company and its operations, nerves of steel and a leadership mindset are also necessary.
“The most important thing is both being a good manager and allowing the teams do their job effectively, by giving them independence and putting your trust in them.”
A COO works with everyone in the company, but the majority of their interactions take place with senior management. In this way, a COO acts as a bridge between top management such as CEOs or CFOs, and the operational teams.
In the United States, a COO starting out can expect a gross monthly salary of $8,200, whereas someone with more experience can earn up to $12,000 per month.
Because the role is already high up in the company, there are few opportunities for career progression. That said, a COO may choose to work towards becoming a CEO or finding other General Management positions. It is also possible – and even tempting – for a COO to embark on an entrepreneurial adventure of their own, thanks to the vast array of skills that someone in this role acquires.
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