The bigger a CEO’s signature the more likely he or she is to be a narcissist, a new study claims.
The research, which compared the signatures of some 605 CEOs of US firms, found that size does matter where bosses’ autographs are concerned.
It found that bosses with bigger signatures also tended to get the highest pay, but were in fact more likely to run their companies into the ground.
The study by academics at the Kenan-Flagler Business School at the University of North Carolina took the signatures of CEOs from company accounts filings with the US Securities and Exchange Commission.
The authors identify narcissism as an egotistical character trait “associated with conceit and disregard for others.”
“Similarly, narcissism creates biased self-perception in the form of upwardly biased evaluation of one’s own abilities and performance,” they say in the paper.
These qualities make them bad decision makers, the study says, but enable them to convince directors and shareholders of their competency to the extent that they get better pay.