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January 26, 2012

Company Leaders’ Personal Style

Filed under: General HR Buzz12:25 pm

I’m sure there was someone who said “Behave your way to success,” long before Dr. Phil ever did, but whoever that was, my tired brain (and Google) can’t seem to find it right now.  In any case, it is good advice for all sorts of applications.  I have wondered how certain people rise to the top in an organization and why others don’t.  What qualities make that person a good leader?  But, I’m not going to explore anything that lofty today. (I said I was tired, remember?)

What really keeps me up at night is not how to develop myself as a leader, but wondering what kind of car I’ll drive when I’m the boss.  (I’m kidding.)  But, it provides a nice segue into sharing the results of a recent Careerbuilder.com survey.  The survey was conducted in August of last year, and included responses from more than 550 individuals in senior leadership positions.

What they wear – Tired of that suit you wear every day?  Survey respondents showed it’s good to be the boss: more than 60% identified business casual as their uniform of choice.  A little fewer than 20% said they wear jeans or shorts.  The business suit came in at last place.  Men in senior leadership positions prefer navy blue, and women have a much higher tendency to wear black.

What they drive – More of those surveyed – 27% – said they drive SUVs to work.  In case you think most bosses are like Bill Lumbergh and drive a Porsche to work, only 8% drive sports cars or convertibles.

What they drink – When they were asked what they drink at happy hours or company parties, one-third of respondents said they don’t drink alcohol at all at those events.  For women who do imbibe at the company party, one-third said wine is their preferred drink, while a quarter of men said beer or wine was their choice.

What they eat – If you think most of the big bosses are heading out for two-hour lunches at the nicest restaurants, think again.  More than half of women (57%) and 36% of men said they typically brown bag it.  Nearly one-quarter of respondents said they normally don’t have lunch at all.

I’ll leave you with one of those interesting facts you can share at your next party: three in ten senior management leaders reported they part their hair to the right.

Source: Careerbuilder.com “Emulating the Big Cheese”

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