What does the boss's signature reveal?
A new study says CEOs with larger signatures are more narcissistic and prone to making bad company decisions.
Next time you discover a signed memo from the boss in your office mailbox, you may want to look more closely at the signature.
A new study suggests that the larger the signature, the greater the chance the boss is a narcissist -- someone with an inflated self-opinion who values their opinion over others, often to a company’s detriment.
The study, by the Kenan-Flagler Business School at the University of North Carolina, looked at signature samples on annual SEC filings from more than 600 CEOs at S&P 500 companies. It took into account factors that could influence signature size, such as age and gender.
It also defined narcissism as a personality trait rather than a psychological disorder -- as a conceit and disregard for others.
And using these guidelines, the study found the larger-signing CEOs were bad decision-makers. "The CEOs whose signatures are largest . . . are those most apt to overspend on R&D or asset acquisition,” says ABC News. "Their companies, in terms of financial performance, tend to be laggards."
Despite this relationship between large signatures and negative job performance, the study noted that the more narcissistic CEOs tended to get higher compensation, "both unconditionally and relative to the next highest paid executive at their firm."
Fast Company took the study one step further and recently compared the signatures of several CEOs. It noted that, for every additional one-tenth of an inch in a CEO’s average written letter size, that company’s dividends decreased by 10% -- while over-investment increased 50%.
“The science holds,” Fast Company proclaimed after comparing the signatures. “Throughout the pair’s tenures, HP made higher investments than Dell and got lower returns on its bets. And yes, Fiorina received the larger compensation package.”
More on moneyNOW
Copyright © 2013 Microsoft. All rights reserved.
Quotes are real-time for NASDAQ, NYSE and AMEX. See delay times for other exchanges.
Fundamental company data and historical chart data provided by Thomson Reuters (click for restrictions). Real-time quotes provided by BATS Exchange. Real-time index quotes and delayed quotes supplied by Interactive Data Real-Time Services. Fund summary, fund performance and dividend data provided by Morningstar Inc. Analyst recommendations provided by Zacks Investment Research. StockScouter data provided by Verus Analytics. IPO data provided by Hoover's Inc. Index membership data provided by SIX Financial Information.
Economists find that as women grow more self-reliant, marriages become more about wanting commitment than needing it.
- Obamaphone program: Dialing for fraud?
- Lone Signal lets you tweet aliens for a fee
- Russell Brand swings at 'Morning Joe' -- and scores
- 7-Eleven targeted in human smuggling raid
- Why 'Dumb Ways to Die' became a viral hit
- Red Robin ad doesn't go down well with vegetarians
- Pity the millionaire: Mansions in short supply
- Bloomberg's new crusade: Food scraps
- China eyes stockings that shoo away perverts
[BRIEFING.COM] The major averages ended higher across the board as the S&P 500 advanced 0.8%.
Equities climbed steadily since the opening bell as investors prepared for tomorrow's policy decision from the Federal Reserve. Although chatter in recent weeks has included speculation the Fed would look to taper its asset purchases, today's broad gains suggest investors expect mostly reassuring words from Chairman Bernanke at tomorrow's press conference.
All ten sectors ended with ... More
More Market News
This young tech company has a can't-miss concept, but hasn't yet generated real sales. Should you see its recent slump as a buying opportunity, or reason to stay away?