The High Earners Scale at Twenty Years Out

By Thomas W. HarrellMargaret S. Harrell
1983| Working Paper No. 689

This paper reports results of a High Earners Scale for a sample of theStanford MBA class of 1962 at 20 years out of school. The coefficient of correlation was .44, significant at the .01 level of confidence for 54 men. There were few women in the class of 1962. At five years out of school the correlation had been .52; at 10, .39; and at 15, .33 (Harrell, 1980). These three coefficients were for samples of the classes of 1962 and 1963, of 149 men, all significant at the .01 level. It had appeared, therefore, that the correlation was declining over time, until this result at 20 years changed the trend. The class of 1963 will be followed up this year. The High Earners Scale was developed in 1975 on results from the classes of 1962, 1963, 1964, and 1965. It was based on high versus low earning MBAs from item analysis (Harrell & Harrell, 1975). Those in the highest third of the class in earnings at 5 years out of school were contrasted with those in the bottom third. A cross validation was made on the class of 1966. Item analyses were made of the items from the Strong Vocational Interest Blank, Guilford Zimmerman Temperament Survey, Ghisellis Self-Description Inventory, and the Individual Background Survey. Fifty four items survived yielding a split half reliability of .87 when corrected for attenuation.