Human behavior is fascinating, and there is no exception to what its influences are on the financial market. This dissertation consists of three essays that examine corporate behavior that is affected by decisions made by the top management. The first essay studies the rationale for leveraged buyout syndication. It demonstrates discrepancies among the decisions made by managers with different educational backgrounds as well as a network effect when it comes to cooperation. The second essay investigates what firm attributes lead to CEO option date manipulation. It suggests that this practice is not a result of inferior corporate governance, and the passage of the 2002 SOX seems to change the considerations behind. The third essay explores whether the existence of family influences helps alleviate the traditional principal-agent problem in small corporations. The findings are consistent with family control acting as a substitute for pay performance as a corporate governance mechanism. Taken together, this dissertation contributes to the understanding not only the role played by the top management, but also the mechanisms involved in the process, either in decision making or in performance.