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Measurement and Management of Chief Executive Reputation

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Richard Rinkenburger

Whereas the importance of CEO reputation has increased over the last years, only very little scientific research has been conducted. This thesis addresses the vagueness of past conceptualizations by providing a well-founded theoretical background, the development of a reliable and valid measurement model of CEO reputation as well as the validation of identified relations to its antecedents and consequences. An empirical online study was conducted among students of the university in Munich to validate the CEO reputation model. Using PLS path modeling, the analysis provides evidence for the impact of CEO reputation on several outcome variables (e.g., corporate reputation) and confirms different influences of the identified antecedents on CEO reputation. Thereby, practitioners can get valuable implications for the management of chief executives’ reputations.

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Table 1: Similarities and differences of CEO and corporate reputation ............. 13 Table 2: Aided recognition of German DAX30 CEOs among German students in 2008 .................................................................................... 21 Table 3: Central consequences of a high CEO reputation .................................. 23 Table 4: Antecedents of CEO reputation in CEO and leader literature .............. 26 Table 5: Fact sheet – Barron’s Magazine: World’s Best CEOs .......................... 29 Table 6: Antecedents of CEO reputation in practical measurement tools .......... 34 Table 7: Factors and traits derived from implicit leadership theories ................ 36 Table 8: Factors and traits derived from party leader studies ............................. 39 Table 9: Summary of the deduced hypotheses .................................................... 52 Table 10: Framework for assessing reflective and formative models ................ 58 Table 11: Operationalization of perceived corporate reputation ........................ 70 Table 12: Operationalization of CEO competence and CEO likeability ............ 72 Table 13: Operationalization of the antecedents of CEO reputation .................. 73 Table 14: Operationalization of trust propensity ................................................ 75 Table 15: Operationalization of perceived CEO trustworthiness ....................... 76 Table 16: Operationalization of willingness to buy stocks ................................. 78 Table 17: Information on the respondents’ gender, age, and education ............. 85 Table 18: Average number of CEOs known ....................................................... 86 Table 19: Source of knowledge on chief executives ........................................... 88 Table 20: Competence evaluation of the CEOs and the companies ................... 90 Table 21: Likeability evaluation of the CEOs and the companies ...................... 92 Table 22: Paired t-test of the six reflective reputation measures ........................ 93 Table 23: Descriptive analyses of the antecedent indicators ............................ 103 Table 24: Reliability criteria for the reflective measurement models ............... 105 Table 25: Bootstrapping results: Outer loadings of the reflective constructs...

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