Even CEOs who resist the temptation to overfocus on protecting their status sometimes fail. Why? Because they do not hold their direct reports accountable for delivering on the commitments that drive results. This happens because they succumb to a different temptation: the desire to be popular.
Wanting to be well liked by peers is an understandable, but dangerous, problem for CEOs. Being at the top of an organization is lonely. There are very few people in a company with whom CEOs spend considerable time, aside from their direct reports.
Those reports are often the same age and earn the same kind of money as the CEO, especially relative to other employees in the company. Most CEOs become friends with their reports and commiserate ...