It’s counterintuitive, but CEOs who befriend their rivals may do better than those who don’t.
When CEOs talk shop, they swap notes, share information and hash over business conditions, leading to similar decisions and reduced risk, according to research from the University of Texas at Austin.
For example, quilting shop owner Marianne D’Eugenio was stunned when Marty Childs, her closest competitor, called to say hello.
“What does that woman want from me?,” she wondered. As it turned out, the two have different tastes in fabric, so they cater to different clienteles. Their friendship paid dividends for both businesses.
— Adapted from “Let’s Be Friends,” Alison Stein Wellner, Inc.