Research shows the behaviour of business leaders could be directly linked to their experiences in childhood

I found this piece on and it immediately reminded me of a number of people whom I’ve met over the years during disaster response, recovery and resilience building activities.  The research results described in this piece are telling in so many ways.  Hope you enjoy it!

Tsunami Hits Minamisoma. Credit: Warren Antiola via flickr

Tsunami Hits Minamisoma. Credit: Warren Antiola via flickr

What makes a great leader? Effectiveness? Experience? Volcanoes? It might seem unlikely, but new research from a team of academics, including Raghavendra Rau, Sir Evelyn de Rothschild Professor of Finance at Cambridge Judge Business School, suggests that experiencing a natural disaster at first hand during your early childhood can have a profound impact on your strategic and tactical decisions in later life. The team studied the impact of natural disasters on leading CEOs and, remarkably, found that those who experienced a number of moderate disasters actually had a greater appetite for risk-taking than those who had experienced none (unsurprisingly, those who experienced the most extreme natural disasters were most risk averse). It also found that they were more likely to take on more risk in response to a threat to the business…READ ON

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