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Managing Partner vs. CEO: What Are the Differences?

Learn about the two careers and review some of the similarities and differences between them.

A managing partner is responsible for the day-to-day management of a law firm, while a CEO is the top executive of a company. Both positions are important in their respective organizations and come with a great deal of responsibility. In this article, we compare and contrast the two positions, including their duties, responsibilities, and necessary skills.

What is a Managing Partner?

A managing partner is a high-level executive who oversees the day-to-day operations of a business. He or she is responsible for making sure that the company meets its goals and objectives. The managing partner also works with the other partners to make strategic decisions about the direction of the business. In some cases, the managing partner is also the CEO or president of the company.

What is a CEO?

A CEO, or Chief Executive Officer, is the highest-ranking executive in a company. They are responsible for making major decisions that will affect the company as a whole. This includes decisions about financial investments, marketing campaigns, product development, and more. CEOs also have the responsibility of hiring and firing upper-level executives. They typically report to a company’s board of directors. In some cases, a CEO may also be the founder of the company.

Managing Partner vs. CEO

Here are the main differences between a managing partner and a CEO.

Job Duties

A CEO is the highest-level employee within a company. Their job duties include making high-level business decisions, such as determining the company’s overall business strategy and direction. They also oversee all aspects of the company’s operations, including hiring employees, setting employee work schedules and assigning projects and tasks.

Managing partners have similar job duties, but they typically focus on different aspects of the company. A managing partner who oversees the firm’s finances may make decisions about how to spend or invest company profits. A managing partner who oversees the firm’s operations may make decisions about hiring new staff members or creating new departments within the company.

Job Requirements

Managing partners and CEOs typically need a bachelor’s degree in business administration, economics or another related field. They also need several years of experience working in management roles before they can be considered for a managing partner or CEO position. Additionally, many organizations prefer candidates who have a master’s degree in business administration (MBA) or another advanced degree. Some employers also require candidates to have a professional certification, such as a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) license or a Certified Management Accountant (CMA) designation.

Work Environment

Managing partners typically work in an office setting, often spending their days in meetings with clients and employees. They may travel to visit different locations where their firm has offices or meet with clients at the client’s location. CEOs also spend most of their time in an office environment but may travel more frequently than managing partners. This is because they are responsible for overseeing all operations within a company, so they need to be able to visit each department and location to ensure that everything is running smoothly.


Both managing partners and CEOs need to have excellent leadership skills. This includes the ability to inspire and motivate employees, build strong teams and make difficult decisions. They also both need to be able to think strategically, set goals and create plans to achieve those goals.

Managing partners also need to have strong interpersonal skills as they often interact directly with clients. They need to be able to build relationships, communicate effectively and resolve conflicts. CEOs typically do not interact with clients as much as managing partners do, but they still need to have good communication skills to interact with their employees, shareholders and the board of directors.

CEOs also need to have a deep understanding of the business they are in and the industry as a whole. They need to be able to make informed decisions about where to take the company and how to grow it. Managing partners do not need to have as comprehensive an understanding of the business because they typically focus on one specific area, such as finance or marketing.


The average salary for a managing partner is $124,458 per year, while the average salary for a CEO is $283,371 per year. The salary for a managing partner may vary depending on the size of the company, the industry in which the company operates and the location of the company. The salary for a CEO may vary depending on the size of the company, the industry in which the company operates and the location of the company.


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