Are You Executive Management Material? Take The Quiz

Last Updated May 17, 2010 4:29 PM EDT

Steve Jobs Stanford CommencementEver wonder where your career is heading? Want to know what the future holds for you? What's at the top of your corporate ladder? Well, let me ask you this:

Are you good at covering things up without getting caught? Is CYA your favorite acronym? Are you capable of moral flexibility? Is "plausible deniability" a major factor in your decision-making? Then you just might be a candidate for executive management. Take the quiz and find out, if you dare. Scoring is at the end ... no cheating!

  1. Corporate fraud happens:
    a) rarely
    b) more often than you think
    c) sooner or later
    d) whenever greedy executives can get away with it
  2. Executives who defraud shareholders should be: a) fined
    b) fined and imprisoned
    c) forced to watch Dancing With The Stars
    d) entitled to the best legal defense money can buy
  3. Greed is:
    a) a natural byproduct of capitalism, like it or not
    b) fine in moderation
    c) for lack of a better word, good
    d) what I live and breathe for
  4. Most board directors:
    a) have shareholders' interests at heart
    b) do a reasonably competent job of oversight
    c) are bought and paid for by the CEO
    d) are tired old farts desperate to be relevant
  5. Executive compensation in corporate America:
    a) is reasonable, CEOs deserve what they get
    b) is excessive in some cases
    c) makes me nauseous whenever I read a proxy statement
    d) so out of control I can't wait to scam my way to the top
  6. When it comes to Wall Street, the feds should:
    a) do a better job of regulation
    b) do away with the bailouts and "too big to fail"
    c) do nothing and let the markets self-regulate
    d) buy all the bank CEOs villas in Spain
  7. To me, ethics should be:
    a) at the top of every executive's list of priorities
    b) at least one of the company's core values
    c) used as a guideline to stay out of jail
    d) who am I kidding; I'll do anything I can get away with
  8. Sometimes I sit in my cubicle and:
    a) fantasize that Steve Jobs is my dad
    b) imagine that's me in the corner office
    c) plot to superglue my boss's butt to his chair
    d) watch porn and wait for a chance to take credit for somebody else's idea
  9. I trust my company's executive management to:
    a) compensate and respect me as I would others
    b) place the interests of the company ahead of their own
    c) shower themselves with ginormous bonuses and stock
    d) do whatever it takes to protect their precious butts
  10. When I wake up in the morning I:
    a) eat breakfast, walk the dog, and happily drive off to work
    b) eat my pride, work like a dog, and kiss my boss's behind
    c) eat everything in sight, kick the dog, and bully my workers
    d) take my Prozac, talk to the dog, and go to work in the corner office
Now it's time to total up your score.
Give yourself the following points per answer:

Each a) is worth 0 points
Each b) is worth 1 point
Each c) is worth 2 points
Each d) is worth 3 points

  • If you scored a total of 0 to 7 points: You live in a complete state of denial about what really goes on in the corporate world. Look up "working stiff" in the dictionary. That's you. Also see dupe, pawn, sap, sucker, and tool.
  • If you scored a total of 8 to 15 points: You're a regular Joe with feet planted firmly on the ground. In other words, you're about as interesting as Styrofoam. Enjoy your career stuck in middle management.
  • If you scored a total of 16 to 22 points:
    You've got just the right balance of contempt for those beneath you and jealousy toward those above you on the corporate ladder. You'll go far, maybe even make vice president.
  • If you scored 23 or higher: You're a cynical creep with the moral fiber of rotting compost. You'll either end up in a minimum-security prison or as the CEO of a Fortune 1000 company.
Image: stanford.edu credit L.A. Cicero