Three ways to spot a bad CEO

What is The Most Dangerous Secret of Corporate AmericaWriting for, Paul Mampilly puts it bluntly:

Many CEOs aren’t good at their jobs. And some of them are morons.

Based on his 20-plus years of experience as a portfolio manager and stock analyst, Paul says that:

Great CEOs are no more common than great baseball players. Think about it: Out of the thousands of people who attempt to play professional baseball, a tiny percentage of them make it to the big leagues. And a tiny percentage of those people become All-Stars. The rest are average or below-average players.

The same thing goes for corporate America… even people managing billion-dollar companies. Fifty percent of managers are below average… and are usually dangerous to shareholders..

What are the signs of a bad CEO? Paul outlines three of them:

  • CEOs who complain about their stock price
  • CEOs who can’t answer a question with plain language
  • CEOs who fib… also called telling “little white lies”

Paul’s article is right on point and, while written from an investment standpoint, supports the thesis for my blog: That the CEO position is unique in business and requires not just a particular set of skills and experience, but training specific to the job. I’ve often written about the importance of having a long-term outlook/plan and being open and honest with all constituents. His full article is well worth reading.

1 Comment

  1. In my opinion, a great way to spot a bad CEO is if you see a CEO who likes to take all the credit for a victory. A CEO’s role is to empower their team to succeed and in order to do that, credit must be shared amongst the team.


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