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Corporate Hierarchy      

Many of my "English as a Foreign Language" students in companies often need to know the vocabulary words that are used to describe the various positions in their corporations. Here is the information that I have given them.

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Or simply do the cloze activity first: Corporate Hiearchy Cloze

Steven Starry
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William Christison
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Teaches English classes in companies and in his own private home.

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A Generic Corporate Organizational Hierarchy

Vocabulary underlined can be found translated into Spanish below.      

By Steven Starry (An English teacher in: Alcorcón, Villaviciosa, Leganés)

Board of Directors

A board of directors is a group of people who either control or execute (or both) the general business affairs of a corporation. "Directors" are usually officers who form part of the Board of Directors.

Chairman of the Board – This person is appointed to be the head of the Board of Directors. In private companies, the Chairman of the Board may also be the CEO (as well as the President).

Two Main Executive Officers

The executive officers manage the whole company. They develop global strategies.
CEO - Chief Executive Officer – This person is the top executive responsible for a company's operations. This person reports to the board of directors. This person is sometimes also the president of the company. Other times, the CEO appoints a president.
President – “President” is a title in many corporations. In some cases the president acts as the “Chief Operating Officer” under the direction of the Chief Executive Officer.

"Vice-Presidents in Charge of Departments ("Vice-President" or another title.)

Departments: There are usually a variety of departments in companies: Sales, Human Resources, Marketing, Accounting, Finance, Production, Support, IT (information technology), Legal, Purchasing, Projects, R&D, etc. The existence and titles of these departments depend on the corporations themselves (i.e. their needs and company culture).

There are a variety of titles for the people who are in charge of the departments in companies: Vice-President, Director, Manager, etc. There are also a variety of tags that accompany these titles: Executive (i.e. Executive Vice-President, Executive Director, Executive Manager, etc.), Country (i.e. Country Manager), Regional, (i.e. Regional Manager). etc. The title of the departments themselves can serve as part of the employees’ titles: Sales Director, Accounting Manager, Human Resources Director, Vice-President of Sales, etc. Sometimes the titles vary in different countries depending on the laws governing corporations there.

The titles that companies give their employees depend on their company’s origins, their cultures and their particular needs. Workers with very similar job-descriptions working in different companies may have completely different titles and salaries. Also, workers with very similar titles can have very different job-descriptions. Also, the hierarchical structures in different companies can be very different, which can create a need for very different departments.

Vocabulary - English to Spanish

corporate - de la empresa
hierarchy - jerarquia
Board of Directors - Consejo de Administración
business affairs - asuntos de negocios
corporation - sociedad anónima, corporación
Chairman of the Board - Presidente del Consejo de Administración
CEO - Consejero Delegado
develop - desarrollar
Vice-President - Vicepresidente (máximo directivo por debajo del Consejero Delegado)
sales - ventas
human resources - recursos humanos
accounting - contabilidad
finance - finanzas
support department - departamento de apoyo
IT department - departamento de informática
purchasing department - departamento de compras
projects - proyectos
R&D - investigación y desarrollo
tags - etiquetas

Practice the vocabulary: Corporate Hierarchy Vocabulary

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