Empirical articles

Global Business Perspectives

, Volume 1, Issue 3, pp 239-260

First online:

Study on the characteristics of top managers and strategic options in different industries over a time period

  • J. Augusto FelícioAffiliated withISEG—School of Economics and Management, Technical University of Lisbon Email author 


This research examines the effect of the characteristics of top managers on the strategic options of firms in different industries. The sample consists of 191 medium-sized industrial firms in the following industries: food, textiles and clothing, chemicals and plastics, and metallurgy and metallomechanics. Data refer to the beginning and end of the 1990s. The study was developed using upper echelon theory and demonstrates the existence of different relations between manager characteristics and strategic options, depending on the activity of firms. These relationships vary over time in association with the economic and social context.


Characteristics of top managers Strategic decision Strategic options Upper echelon theory Medium-sized industrial firms