Date of Award
Ph.D. in Business Administration
Douglas W. Vorhies
John P. Bentley
The importance of marketing is growing. This is not just a perception: CEOs appear to see its importance as well. Despite the increase in the understood importance of marketing, there still remains a relatively scant amount of research on the impact that can be had by top management team members on a firm's strategic marketing outcomes. The research which follows explores an important question that has previously been comparatively neglected by researchers: what top management team individual differences can impact the strategic marketing outcomes of the firm? The first essay, based on a multi-industry sample of 325 publicly listed fortune 500 firms over a five-year period (2003-2008), reveals that CEOs who are more extraverted tend to run companies with greater levels of marketing capabilities. This essay explores the alternative perspectives of extraverted leadership and concludes that an extraverted leader, who is more concerned with social interactions, tends to focus on building relationships, rather than the traditional approaches of beating competitors to market and increasing transactions. The second essay explores an interesting perspective borrofrom the field of biology: facial width-to-height ratio. Using recent research from the field of evolution and human behavior as a theoretical foundation, this research looks at physical characteristics as a way for stakeholders to predict the aggressive actions of the firm's top marketing managers. Using this measure of masculinity, this study finds evidence to support the claim that more masculine chief marketing officers will be more aggressive in their strategic-marketing decision making, spending more on advertising and research and development. The third and final essay investigates firms' top management teams as a signal to stakeholders during a diversity crisis. Using negative comments of Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella as the empirical context, event-study methodology is implemented in order to examine shareholder value for firms in the technology industry on the day immediately following these inappropriate comments. Results indicate that firms that include an ethnic or gender based minority member as part of their tmt tend to be less impacted by these events than firms that are completely made up of "traditional" male and Caucasian leaders.
Nicol, Cameron Duncan, "A Little Difference Makes A Big Difference: Essays On The Link Between Top Management Team Traits And Strategic Marketing Decisions" (2017). Electronic Theses and Dissertations. 1062.