After 18 months as the CEO at TestSoup, I decided it was time to transition the company in a new direction. I am extremely proud of everything we have accomplished thus far and I couldn't be happier with the team that's in place. You guys/gals rock.
Before stepping down, I was asked to write down everything I did as the CEO and turn the information into a job description. Long story short, a startup CEO is responsible for everything: company vision and mission, operations, sales, marketing, business development, HR/PR, strategic initiatives, customer service, investor relations, etc. Moreover, a startup CEO is involved at all levels: stategic, operational, and tactical.
Here is a pretty good description of what you have to do as the CEO of an early stage startup:
TestSoup CEO Job Description - http://testsoup.com/
TestSoup, a revenue generating test prep startup, is looking for a new CEO to lead its innovative team and online and mobile product lines. We are an early stage startup with lofty goals and big plans for 2011.
This role is ideal for someone who has the right mix of leadership, passion, energy, experience, business savvy, entrepreneurial spirit, innovative nature, and a vast Rolodex with the who’s who in the test prep and educational space.
The CEO will have primary responsibility for leading company operations, the overall growth strategy, organizational leadership, financial and organizational management, external communications, and marketing and sales efforts. He/she will also be responsible for the development and management of advisor and investor relationships.
The CEO will also be responsible for providing the short term and long term company vision as well as the development of the sales and marketing strategy. He/she will also be responsible to achieve fundraising and revenue objectives.
The ideal candidate will have been successful in startup companies (or will have learned from previous failures) focused on the wants and needs of consumers in the tech or test prep industry.
In addition to being the face, voice, and spirit of the company, the candidate must demonstrate a track record for attracting, managing, and closing angel and VC funding rounds.
Focus During the First 12 Months:
• Develop and lead execution of product development, sales, and marketing.
• Develop relationships with angel investors and venture capitalists; obtain financing at reasonable terms when necessary.
• Create an appropriate short/long term vision
• Develop short/long term company and product roadmap.
• Oversee operating plan, budget, cash flow, and company finances.
• Build and lead an effective and cohesive executive management team to include all company employees, while establishing a basic personnel policy, initiating and monitoring policies relating to personnel actions and training and professional development programs.
• Build and motivate a world-class sales and marketing team.
• Responsible for all elements of HR, employee compensation plans, and benefits.
• Establish and implement short and long term goals, objectives, policies, and operating procedures.
• Create and revise all content while building a world-class content development team.
• Close deals with schools, sponsors, and industry partners.
• Help build an excellent board of directors and board of advisors.
• Ensure company objectives and standards of performance are not only understood but owned by management and employees.
• Ensure company and its businesses comply with all applicable legal and regulatory requirements and, where appropriate, best practices.
• Establish, achieve, and report on milestones to the company’s owners and founding members.
• 3-5 years of junior and/or senior level management experience.
• Prior experience in sales and/or leadership efforts at a startup company, test prep company, or other organization.
• Prior CEO/COO experience desired.
• 2+ years of strategic sales and marketing experience, ideally dealing with test prep or education.
• Experienced entrepreneur who has taken at least one startup from seed round all the way to an investor’s exit strategy is desired.
• Excellent leadership, negotiation, management, problem solving, and interpersonal skills.
• Exceptional oral and written communication skills.
• Extensive experience in fund raising through angels, super angels, and venture capitalists.
• Track record of building innovative, creative, and collaborative teams.
• Strong desire to lead from a strategic and tactical perspective in all aspects of day to day company operations.
• Strong undergraduate and/or graduate academic credentials preferred