Faster Route to the CEO Suite: Nepotism or Managerial Proficiency?

Carlo Salvato, Alessandro Minichilli and Raffaella Piccarreta, all of Bocconi University, published “Faster Route to the CEO Suite: Nepotism or Managerial Proficiency?” on December 5th, 2011 in Family Business Review. To view other OnlineFirst articles, please click here.

The abstract:

The aim of this article is to investigate the differences between the careers of CEOs in family and nonfamily firms and the differences between the careers of family and nonfamily CEOs within family firms. Extant literature focuses on the family or nonfamily nature of firm leadership, especially around CEOs’ transitions. It predicts that agency considerations prevail in favoring the appointment of family members and insiders as CEOs and in granting them faster and quicker careers. In contrast, detailed analysis of the entire careers of 100 CEOs—from their graduation to their first appointment as CEO—shows that the accumulation of human capital throughout a manager’s career prevails over agency considerations in predicting CEO appointments.

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