SAN FRANCISCO — Shortly after Twitter’s board of directors began its search for a new chief executive in June, it said it would only accept someone willing to commit to the job full time. It was a not-so-subtle message to Twitter’s co-founder and interim boss, Jack Dorsey, that he would have to give up his job running Square, a mobile payments start-up, if he wanted to run Twitter on a permanent basis.
On Monday, the eight-member board reversed itself, announcing that it had decided to allow Mr. Dorsey, its chairman, to head both companies after all. The decision came despite lingering reservations by some directors who felt that Twitter needed a full-time leader, according to people familiar with the board’s deliberations.
Mr. Dorsey, who never seriously contemplated leaving Square, overcame those objections in part by running Twitter — quite adeptly, by most accounts — for the last three months.
“We had a chance to see what Jack did now,” Peter Currie, who led the board’s search committee, said in an interview. “He demonstrated success in the role.”
Board members said Mr. Dorsey, 38, accelerated the pace of product improvements started last year by his predecessor, Dick Costolo, and communicated frequently and openly with employees. He also demonstrated a willingness to delegate many of his duties to his senior team, including Adam Bain, Twitter’s president of global revenue and partnerships, who was promoted to chief operating officer.
“I am honored by the trust the board has put in me to continue to run the company,” Mr. Dorsey said during a conference call on Monday with Twitter investors. He said he would focus on three things: disciplined execution, simplifying the service and communicating Twitter’s value to users.
This is Mr. Dorsey’s second go-round as Twitter’s chief executive.
Evan Williams, a board member and co-founder of Twitter who was instrumental in firing him in 2008, noted that the board considered many candidates before settling on Mr. Dorsey.
“I honestly didn’t think we’d land on Jack when we started unless he could step away from Square,” Mr. Williams wrote in a post on Medium, the social media site he now runs. “But ultimately, we decided it was worth it.”
In the end, Mr. Dorsey made a compelling case that he had matured and grown as a leader and that only a founder would have the moral authority to truly shake up a company that has been struggling to attract new users and compete for advertising dollars.
“He’s a bit of a Pied Piper,” Mr. Currie said.
The decision of Mr. Bain, who was also a candidate for the top job, to stay on as Mr. Dorsey’s deputy was critical in helping to persuade the board that Mr. Dorsey could “load balance” as a part-timer, Mr. Currie said.
Mr. Bain, 41, is known for his deft touch with people and has long charmed advertisers, which are the principal source of the company’s revenue. As chief operating officer, Mr. Bain will continue to focus on courting that crucial constituency, allowing Mr. Dorsey to focus on improving the core product and on his responsibilities at Square, which is preparing for a possible initial public offering of stock.
“Having Jack the product guy and Adam the advertising guy sitting next to each other makes a lot of sense,” said Debra Aho Williamson, the principal social media analyst at eMarketer, a research firm. “You need both.”
The pair will face top advertisers and agencies together for the first time in New York on Thursday when they make a presentation about the company’s video advertising products and discuss the marketing potential of a new feature, code-named Project Lightning, that shows top tweets by subject.
Chris Williams, president of Magna Global, an ad agency that works with big brands like Chrysler and Coca-Cola, said Twitter had failed to keep up with rivals like Facebook and Google. And despite Mr. Bain’s talents, the ad team thinned out quickly below him, Mr. Williams said.
“You have to move forward,” Mr. Williams said. “You have to innovate, and you have to do it quickly.” He added, “I’ve got Facebook and Google knocking at my door five times a week.”
Ross Levinsohn, a media investor and former tech executive who hired Mr. Bain and worked with him for seven years at Fox’s online and entertainment properties, said Mr. Bain would be a true partner to Mr. Dorsey.
“He’s incredibly talented on the management side and the people side,” Mr. Levinsohn said, noting that Mr. Bain rebuilt FoxSports.com and other products and negotiated acquisitions in addition to creating new streams of revenue.
“He’s got a really broad skill set, which should make him a great C.O.O.,” Mr. Levinsohn said. “That will allow Jack to do what he does best: the product vision.”
Mr. Dorsey has pushed a faster pace of product improvement while serving as interim chief since Mr. Costolo, the company’s chief executive for about five years, stepped down on July 1.
Mr. Costolo left Twitter’s board of directors last week, the company announced, and Twitter is in the process of finding a new, outside candidate for the role of board chairman. Previously, Mr. Dorsey served as Twitter’s chairman.
Twitter has become a household name, with political leaders and celebrities around the world using the network to broadcast text messages and images to millions of followers.
But the company has struggled to convey to ordinary people why they should regularly use the service, which carries roughly half a billion messages a day.
Twitter had an average of 316 million monthly users in the second quarter, a number that has been largely flat for some time. Despite some changes to make the service easier for newcomers to understand, Twitter still trails other social networks like Facebook and Instagram and major messaging platforms like WhatsApp in popularity.
It has also been slow to capitalize on the public’s enormous demand for video, although its new Periscope app has established a strong position in streaming live events.
The company has tried to attract casual visitors by giving them a taste of the “best of Twitter” on its home page before requiring that they create an account, and by setting up “instant timelines” of tweets based on who is on a person’s cellphone contact list. Similarly, it has begun exploring the possibility of selling ads that would be shown to more casual visitors.
So far, it is too early for those nascent efforts to show results.
Twitter’s challenges have unnerved investors, who were counting on it to match the rapid growth of its early days. In recent weeks, the company’s shares have traded below the $ 26 price at which they first sold nearly two years ago.
On Monday, after news of Mr. Dorsey’s appointment, the stock soared 7 percent to close at $ 28.15.
“Now that Twitter’s C.E.O. drama is out of the way, the company can get back to doing its job: Building products people want to use,” Nate Elliott, a social media analyst for Forrester Research, wrote in an email. “Not every new idea launched will succeed, but if it launches enough new features, some will surely find a wider audience. And a wider audience is exactly what Twitter needs.”
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