The New C-suite Jobs

by Meg Guiseppi on March 25, 2013

new c-suite jobs

The digital age, the new economy and the new world of work are ushering in a new wave of c-suite roles.

Some sound silly and overly touchy-feely:

Chief Listener
Chief People Officer
Chief Happiness Officer

But these, and others, are emerging and may be here to stay.

Or at least until the next best thing comes along, in response to future corporate and workplace needs.

Signaling the new trend, in February LinkedIn Jobs ran this listing:

Chief Human Resource Officer- A new “C” suite role Job at An Architectural Engineering Consulting Firm

Last year in The Atlantic, Deepak Advani, IBM’s VP of Business Analytics Products, suggested the need for a Chief Analytics Officer (CAO), to lead a consolidated center for analytics:

“A big advantage of having a centralized analytics group is that it can ensure that the enterprise is operating from a standardized set of reports, dashboards, and models, which can drive greater alignment and faster decision-making across the enterprise.”

Geoffrey Colon, VP of Social@Ogilvy, noted in an article in The Futurist last summer:

“New job title creation happens every few years as technological shifts force changes in work functions.”

He anticipated the following new roles will shake up the C-suite:

Earned Media Officer – S/he will push earned media impressions and engagement, exploiting the fact that earned media is the dominant marketing model moving forward.

Chief Content Officer – Working closely with community managers, s/he will embrace established and emerging social media when publishing content for the brands they manage across all channels.

Open-Source Manager – S/he will work internally and externally with open-source talent to share best practices and find the best solutions.

Chief Linguist – S/he will stay on top of the latest social media lingo and shorthand expressions, to best communicate with the company’s customers.

Chief Data Scientist – S/he will replace the chief marketing officer or the chief digital officer, both of whom typically lack the analytical skill to understand how to manage the emergence of big data.

In a Forbes article early last year, C Is For Silly: The New C-Suite Titles, Jeanne Goudreau noted that some top organizations have already embraced the trend for new titles at the top executive level:

  • Kodak and Dell — Chief Listener
  • Facebook — Chief Privacy Officer
  • Coca-Cola — Chief Administrative Officer, Chief Sustainability Officer, Chief Scientific and Regulatory Officer, and Chief Quality and Product Integrity Officer
  • Microsoft — Chief People Officer
  • IBM — Chief Information Officer
  • Xerox — Chief Strategy Officer
  • New York City — Chief Digital Officer

The article included a photo slide show of six other new c-suite titles now in circulation:

  • Chief Internet Evangelist
  • Chief Happiness Officer
  • Chief Knowledge Officer
  • Chief Customer Officer
  • Chief Innovation Officer
  • Chief Observance Officer

In the same article, Peter Cappelli, a University of Pennsylvania management professor, said:

“Big companies are more likely to take these titles “seriously” with resources and infrastructure, but small businesses may have more leniency and ability to be creative.”

Related posts:

7 Things Successful Executive Job Seekers Know

I’m a CMO But I Need Help Writing My Executive Resume

5 Things Executive Recruiters Want: Executive Job Search Best Practices

photo by TooFarNorth

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