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Like a boss: Study reveals common characteristics of senior management

A new CareerBuilder survey reveals the secret lives of CEOs.

Television and movies have introduced us to some unforgettable bosses who have become a big part of pop culture history.

From cold, power-hungry Miranda Priestly…

To lovable but often clueless Michael Scott.

You may feel like you know more about these fictional bosses than you do about your own company's leaders, and a new survey from CareerBuilder reveals you're not alone in being unacquainted with C-level executives. More than half (55 percent) of workers surveyed have never had a conversation with the CEO, while a whopping 26 percent say they don't even know what their CEO looks like.

The survey takes a closer look at the personalities and preferences of those who occupy the corner office, hopefully helping to remove some of the mystery surrounding them.

Dressing to impress?
They say to dress for the job you want, not the job you have, but if you already have the top job, you might as well be comfortable. According to the survey, only 1 in 5 executives (20 percent) consider a business suit typical office attire. Most executives (57 percent) outfit themselves in business casual clothing, while 18 percent usually wear jeans or shorts to work.

Commonplace commutes
When it comes to commuting, most top dogs prefer cars – but not the chauffeured kind. Seventy-nine percent take themselves to work in an automobile, with 1 in 4 driving an SUV, 1 in 5 opting for a mid-sized sedan and 1 in 10 cruising around in a luxury sedan.

Eighteen percent use more environmentally friendly modes of transport, with 9 percent taking public transportation, 4 percent driving hybrids, 4 percent walking and 1 percent riding their bikes.

Sober hour
You may think happy hours are the best time to see your senior leaders loosen up, but don't always expect them to let loose with an adult beverage. More than half of senior management (62 percent) abstain from drinking alcoholic beverages at company happy hours. Instead, they choose soda (23 percent), water (19 percent), coffee (13 percent) or nothing at all (7 percent). Thirteen percent of executives kick back with a beer, and the same number (13 percent) sip wine, while 8 percent opt for mixed drinks.

Working up a storm, and a sweat
If you feel like you're always working overtime, at least your executives likely are too. When asked how many hours they work in a typical week, 40 was the minimum for most head honchos. Fifty-eight percent say they work 40 to 49 hours a week, and 32 percent work 50 hours or more. Then there are those lucky few (9 percent) who work less than 40 hours a week.

Due to their packed schedule, nearly 1 in 5 (18 percent) say they "rarely" or "never" work out. Yet the vast majority of superiors (82 percent) are able to squeeze in at least one work out a week, with 39 percent getting their sweat on four or more days a week. So if your senior leaders can find time for a quick exercise, so can you.

Talking with – or back to – the boss
If given the chance to have a conversation with your CEO, what would you ask him or her? Surveyed workers gave the following answers—some of which could be considered brutally honest…or just brutal.

  • "Good job."
  • "Give me a raise."
  • "Offer employees more opportunity for advancement."
  • "Come around more often and meet your employees."
  • "I love my job."
  • "Empower employees and involve them in developing products and services."
  • "Fire my manager."
  • "Get a clue how to run our company."
  • "Keep your promises."
  • "Tell the truth no matter what."
  • "Trust the people below you."
  • "Tell us when we do something good instead of always focusing on the bad."
  • "Give back to your employees. Without them, you would have no money."
  • "The inmates are running the asylum."
  • "Work on your communication and management skills."

(Picture Source: Internet)

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