CEOs' reputations sway investors

In the corporate world, image counts for a lot. And according to a new study, the attitude of the chief executive officer could mean the difference between big profits or pennies for the company.

The global public relations firm Burson-Marsteller interviewed 1,400 high-level business people and found investors are carefully watching the top dog. Fully 95 percent of financial analysts in the group said they would buy stock based on a CEO's reputation, while 94 percent of those polled would recommend a company's stock because of the CEO.

Other survey findings:

**A CEO's image can account for "up to 45 percent" of a company's reputation.

**Communicating a clear vision inside the company, credibility, and retaining a top senior team were listed as the most important characteristics of a CEO.

**Investors get most of their information about CEOs from the print media. In fact, 82 percent of respondents develop their opinion of CEOs through business magazines, and 78 percent through national newspapers.

"Managed correctly, CEO reputation can be one of the most powerful tools used to earn support in time of crisis, create shareholder value, and help to attract and retain the best and the brightest," says Joseph Fisher, CEO of Burson-Marsteller.

(c) Copyright 2000. The Christian Science Publishing Society

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