Ever since Howard Schultz revealed that he’s thinking of running for president, many people are revisiting a time-honored question: Could a business CEO ever be a good choice for the nation’s highest office?
But that’s not quite the right question, as it lumps together people with very different backgrounds and skill sets. The “CEO/businessperson” category breaks down into at least three major types.
First, there are multinational company CEOs (like Rex Tillerson and Carly Fiorina) who are products of long careers with steady rises up through bureaucratic hierarchies. Some of them indeed preside over organizations whose economic value, scope of trade and diplomatic issues surpass those of most of the world’s nations.