Watson Can Tell You Your CEO’s Secrets

IBM’s Watson seems to be able to do it all: From learning medicine to Urban Dictionary, he’s shown to be quite the versatile supercomputer. So it was only a matter of time before Watson and his Personality Insights program were used to analyze what makes people tick. Paysa has conducted research using Watson to analyze business titans and tech leaders for the personality traits that define them. Are you curious if you have traits in common with them?

Personality Traits Tracked

To compile the data on theses business leaders, the folks at Paysa took a sample of at least 2,500 words written or spoken by them and then fed the text through the program. While this method is not completely foolproof in its accuracy, it should be good for setting a general scope of what to look for in leadership.

What they found was interesting. Out of their eight industries identified, intellect ranked as the number one trait of leaders in seven of the eight. It only fell second in politics, where it played second fiddle to altruism. The authors estimate that this is probably due to politics working more as a service to the people. Most of these categories similarly had altruism as a high-ranking trait though.

These traits were also applied to individuals to see how they ranked against one another in each of these departments, with the following as an example of an individual score:

Meg Whitman, the CEO of Hewlett Packard Enterprise, had the highest score for achievement-seeking, earning almost a .90 on Watson’s scale of 0 to 1. Whitman previously held executive roles at Hasbro, Disney, and eBay and studied at Princeton before attending Harvard Business School for her MBA. In 2008, The New York Times included her among the women likely to become the first female president of the U.S.

Among other points of data, Elon Musk and Chuck Robbins ranked as the most cautious tech leaders, and Satya Nadella and Bill Gates ranked as the most assertive tech leaders. Curiously, “immoderation” was a recurring major trait across tech leaders.

If you have a favorite tech leader, they probably have put together a graph profiling the personality of that person. Explore the data, compare their traits with your own, and see how you might be able to use their traits to become a greater success yourself. You can view the research here:

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