Gettting it done one way or the other! CEO ideology and firm strategies: The moderating effect of CEO personality



We theorize and empirically illustrate the micro-dispositional sources of CEOs’ managerial discretion by highlighting that CEO personality - narcissism and extraversion – amplifies their ability to imbibe their preferences in firm strategies. Based on a sample of 302 CEOs of Fortune 500 firms, we examine the moderating role of CEO narcissism and extraversion in the relationship between CEO political ideology (conservatism versus liberalism) and ideology-congruent firm strategies (corporate social responsibility:CSR, and downsizing). Whereas CEO extraversion strengthened both the CEO liberalism- CSR and the CEO conservatism - downsizing relationships, CEO narcissism strengthened the CEO narcissism – CSR relationship, but not the CEO conservatism – downsizing relationship. In supplementary study MTURK sample of working adults, we further explored the distinct micro-dispositional discretionary mechanisms associated with narcissism and extraversion: perceived managerial discretion and issue selling ability. We found that narcissism related strongly to perceived managerial discretion but not to issue selling ability, whereas extraversion related strongly to issue selling ability but related only weakly (or not related) to perceived managerial discretion. Taken together, these results lend nuanced theorization and evidence on the micro-dispositional sources of managerial discretion.