By Amanda Fletcher, JMI Intern and Auburn University Graduate in EconomicsTags: Governor, BusinessWith the recent spike in CEOs running for government office, many of us are left with the intriguing question, “Can CEOs make good, maybe even better, policymakers?”There are certainly some aspects of these big business types that would seem likely to not only work, but thrive. For example, businesses operate in an ever changing environment where efficiency, adaptation, and true dedication must be a top priority in order to survive. Government bureaucracies would definitely benefit from a dose of that!However, there are distinct differences between running a company and holding office. In a company, CEOs have total control over their business and its atmosphere and can manipulate it to their likings. They can issue orders, expect them to be carried out, and hold every employee accountable. In public office however, accountability unfolds differently, if at all.Also, CEOs have a more simplified process as well as the final say on how their corporations are run in terms of strategy and policy. In government office, ideas are presented that must then be negotiated and compromise reached with many others who are equally as important and powerful before final legislation can be created and enacted– a much more extensive process with ongoing battles between differing entities and opinions.So are CEOs prepared to hold office? Former CEO of Goldman Sachs and former New Jersey Governor Jon Corzine recounts in Newsweek’s ” The Keys to Success for CEO Politicians” how he once thought having a managerial skills background would prepare him for the transformation from CEO to governor. However, after four years of serving as governor, Corzine believes that being a CEO cannot even begin to prepare you for what is to come, comparing the shift from managing 20,000 people to 9 million. He states, “I don’t think candidates get the scale and scope of what governing is. You don’t have the flexibility you imagine. There’s no exact translation.”However, with the current state of the economy and unemployment, many will argue that these former corporate executives do indeed have the much needed experience in business expansion and job creation. According to MoneyEconomics “most importantly, in America, businesses are (rightly) viewed as the primary force behind job creation, something that, at 9.9% unemployment, America can use.”There are arguments for and against CEO’s in office–in the past, some have been very successful, while others got lost in the chaos. But as we have also witnessed many times over, even so called “career politicians” have tanked in the past. Leaving a puzzle as to what truly prepares anyone to take office? Maybe the questions we should be asking is not the candidate’s former occupation/position, but rather what are that person’s leadership and personal qualities, what are their skills, and how are they going to lead us to where we want and need to go in the future?