What Are C-Level Corporate Jobs?

Definition & Examples of C-Level Corporate Jobs

What to know about C-level jobs

The Balance / Theresa Chiechi

C-level corporate jobs are the top executive positions in a company. The jobs of these high-level managers are called “C-level” because of their typical titles usually begin with “C” for “Chief,” such as Chief Executive officer (CEO).

Find out more about C-level corporate jobs, the typical job titles that are out there, and tips for getting one of these positions.

What Are C-Level Corporate Jobs?

C-level titles are used to describe a highly ranked individual’s role within the company. Officers and managers who maintain C-level positions are some of the most influential members of an organization. They usually hire and fire authority, lead stock decisions, oversee a larger workload than most employees, and have some of the highest salaries.

How C-Level Corporate Jobs Work

In general, these jobs have higher salaries because the workload is heavier and important decisions are made on behalf of the company at this level. These roles are usually achieved after years of experience in the field or time with the company.

In large corporate organizations, many of these officers work together to create a senior executive team. Senior executive teams are expected to make joint decisions on investments, customer-facing issues, operations, and finance. They work together to determine the best strategies for all important issues and decisions that affect the company at its highest level. 

Types of C-Level Corporate Jobs

C-level executives are often experts in business, leadership, and team-building as opposed to technical roles like engineering or mechanics. Some C-suite individuals oversee breakout sessions or teach leadership training within their company, while others may meet with other companies to solidify new business clients.

Types of C-level corporate jobs include:

  • CEO (Chief Executive Officer)
  • CTO (Chief Technology Officer)
  • CFO (Chief Financial Officer)
  • CIO (Chief Information Officer)
  • COO (Chief Operating Officer)
  • CCO (Chief Compliance Officer)
  • CKO (Chief Knowledge Officer)
  • CSO (Chief Security Officer)
  • CDO (Chief Data Officer)
  • CMO (Chief Marketing Officer)

Depending on the company, some titles are combined or broken down to better represent and support its needs.

How to Get a C-Level Corporate Job

Educational background and work experience are both major factors that can make an employee an attractive candidate for a C-level position. In addition to multiple years of experience, many C-level executives have graduate degrees to provide them with a solid foundation for leadership. Those with a C-level title usually earn a Master of Business Administration (MBA) or other professional degree related to their position.

Michael K. Burroughs, President of Executive Integration and Coaching Services for the global executive search firm DHR International, shares his advice and tips for increasing your visibility in a crowded job market and standing out as a thought leader in your field:

  • Develop a professional blog (with a photo) and post to it at least bi-weekly.
  • Ensure that your blog is connected to your LinkedIn profile.
  • Limit your blog to areas where you are an expert.
  • Write articles for publication in a variety of places, including industry blogs and trade publications.
  • Volunteer to give breakout sessions at professional or industry conferences.
  • Post all of your thought leadership activities to your LinkedIn profile.
  • Ensure your contact information is on your LinkedIn profile.
  • Create short YouTube "mini-lectures" where you can demonstrate your thought leadership.
  • Write a book or an e-book on a subject where you are a thought leader and upload it to Amazon and elsewhere.

If done well, these tactics may make you more accessible and attractive to executive recruiters.

Key Takeaways

  • C-level corporate jobs are the top executive positions in a company.
  • The "C" in "C-level" usually stands for chief.
  • Employees in C-level positions are some of the most influential and highly paid members of an organization.
  • People in C-level positions have usually earned a master's degree related to their position and have considerable experience.