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Narcissistic CEOs and Executive Compensation

O'Reilly, Charles A., Bernadette Doerr, David F. Caldwell and Jennifer A. Chatman

Institute for Research on Labor and Employment, Working Paper Series from Institute of Industrial Relations, UC Berkeley

Abstract: Narcissism is characterized by traits such as dominance, self-confidence, a sense ofentitlement, grandiosity, and low empathy. There is growing evidence that individuals with these characteristics often emerge as leaders, and that narcissistic CEOs may make more impulsive and risky decisions. We suggest that these tendencies may also affect how compensation is allocatedamong top management teams. Using employee ratings of personality for the CEOs of 32 prominent high-technology firms, we investigate whether more narcissistic CEO’s have compensation packages that are systematically different from their less narcissistic peers and specifically whether these differences increase the longer the CEO stays with the firm. As predicted, we find that more narcissistic CEOs who have been with their firm longer receive more total direct compensation (salary, bonus, stock options), have more money in their totalshareholdings, and have larger discrepancies between their own (higher) compensation and the other members of their team.

Keywords: Business; Executive Compensation (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-bec and nep-hrm
Date: 2013-03-14
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