This year, our readers flocked to articles on everything from flappers and chocolate, to stories on digital inequality and the characteristics of a natural born CEO.

Before we wrap up 2019, we went back and looked at what you, our readers, were most captivated by this year.

Topping the list was Christine Myrvang’s four-year-old article on a 100-year-old phenomenon:

1) How flappers rebelled through feminism and consumerism

“It’s spring time, and teenagers are graduating from secondary school. It’s the time to get annoyed over the helpless youth, a well-known practice through history. The 1920s, especially, was the provocative girls’ era”

The runner-up was another BI Business Review classic: Jan Ketil Arnulf’s 2014 piece on motivation and performance-related pay:

2) Money as a motivator  

“When the most powerful motivators for people’s behaviour lose their power because everyone has them, it becomes necessary to find other ways to increase the stakes”

Rounding out the top three is one of our Top Published Researchers of the Week this year: Samuli Knüpfer’s article on the key characteristics of a natural born CEO:

3) Tall, good with people, and smart? You’re CEO material

“CEOs that run the largest firms in the economy have exceptionally high trait values. CEOs managing family firms have lower trait values, particularly if they come from the founding family but are not the founders themselves”

Next up is another article on leadership qualities: Øyvind Lund Martinsen on the important role of personality in management:

4) Personality for leadership

“The best leaders are in the public sector and female leaders are better suited for leadership than men, indicates a study of nearly 3000 managers”

Many BI Business Review readers enjoy stories on advances in marketing. Coming in at number five is Luk Warlop and Bendik Samuelsen’s article on the possible negative effects of rebranding:

5) The rebranding riddle: What drives customers away?

“Managers face the difficult task of balancing the trade-offs between having a dynamic brand strategy or a strategy that builds a strong, consistent position among existing core consumers”

The combination of chocolate and reputation tempted readers to dig into this Peggy Brønn article:  

6) Why Freia is not Norway’s most reputable company

“Freia as a firm no longer exists. Rating it number 1 on a corporate reputation survey will not bring it back”

The digital revolution has been positive in many respects, but has also created new gaps between people. In 2019, readers enjoyed learning more about how in an article by Christoph Lutz:

7) What is the relationship between digital technologies and inequality?

“Three divides define research on the unequal effects of digital technologies, which has developed from a focus on access, to skills and uses of these, and most recently to real-world outcomes of their use”

Mirha Sunagic certainly engaged readers in her article about ambitious employees’ reluctance to speak up about issues at work:

8) Employees who dream of becoming leaders do not speak up about problems at the workplace

“Ambitious employees feel they will be punished if they express criticisms”

Laura E. Mercer Traavik’s research article on managers who misuse research struck a nerve:  

9) Are you a critical thinker?

“The misuse and uncritical application of research in management is dangerous. Managers and organisations should utilise the research critically and experimentally”

Rounding out our top ten of 2019 is another Top Published Researcher of the Week article: Koen Pauwel’s piece on where in the world consumers are most sensitive to costs, user reviews and star ratings:

10) Prices, reviews and ratings: What makes customers say “yes”?

“We found that consumers were more sensitive to price when their society values masculinity, materialism and strict rules, (e.g. Italy and Malaysia). Consumers were most sensitive to star ratings when their country values individualism (e.g. the US)”

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