Predictors of Business Success Over Two Decades: An MBA Longitudinal Study

By Bradley A. HansonThomas W. Harrell
1985| Working Paper No. 788

Measurements collected on Stanford MBA students while they were working on their MBAs are used to predict management success through 20 years of their careers. Management success was operationalized as compensation which was measured at the beginning of the post-MBA career and at 5, 10, 15, and 20 years after receiving the MBA. A measure of extroversion, the Admissions Test for Graduate Study in Business (ATGSB) total score, and age at the beginning of the MBA program were found to be important predictors of compensation at 20 years, with the coefficient of the extroversion measure being positive and the coefficients of age and ATGSB total score being negative. The coefficient of the measure of extroversion remained fairly constant over time, but the coefficients of age and ATGSB score decreased over time. Some possible explanations of these results are offered.