Execs should watch their waistline: Study

(Fotolia)

(Fotolia)

QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 11:15 AM ET

New research shows a person's weight can impact how they are perceived at work, especially for executives.

The Center for Creative Leadership's study published in the Wall Street Journal says executives with wider waistlines and a high body-mass index (BMI) are seen as less effective.

The CCL says the perception changes because the leadership required of executives, such as CEOs, is physically taxing as well as mentally challenging.

To gather the information the researchers collected data from hundreds of peer performance reviews as well as health results gathered at a week-long workshop.

In an interview with the Wall Street Journal, Barry Posner, a leadership professor at Santa Clara University in California, said he couldn't list any Fortune 500 CEOs who are overweight. "We have stereotypes about fat," he told the paper, "so when we see a senior executive who's overweight, our initial reaction isn't positive."

Posner said companies are seeking leaders with endurance.


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