Leadership

What Do CEOs Do?

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Executive Summary

The authors develop a methodology to collect and analyze data on CEO's time use. The idea sketched out in a simple theoretical set-up is that CEO time is a scarce resource and its allocation can help them identify the firm's priorities as well as the presence of governance issues. They follow 94 CEOs of top-600 Italian firms over a pre-specified week and record the time devoted each day to different work activities. They focus on the distinction between time spent with insiders (employees of the firm) and outsiders (people not employed by the firm). Individual CEOs differ systematically in how much time they spend at work and in how much time they devote to insiders vs. outsiders.

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