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CEOs divided over Trump

Donald Trump
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Donald Trump

When it comes to Donald Trump, voters are all across the map, in terms of support.

Same goes for America's top CEOs, many of whom are sharply divided about the presumptive Republican nominee for President, including billionaires Barry Diller and Ken Langone.

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Thursday on CNBC, Diller, chairman of IAC Corporation, had some very harsh words about Trump.

"There's nobody that I've ever known, ever, that's risen to the presidency that was actually of evil character," Diller said. "Anybody who attacks people in the manner that he attacks people … that's evil."

Langone, co-founder of Home Depot, told CNBC on Wednesday that he is prepared to fully support Trump's presidential run.

"I'm all in. And you want to know something? I think he'll do a hell of a good job," said Langone. "I think he's going to be the president and people around him are going to help him get things done."

So why the big divide? What traits or characteristics are CEOs looking for in a candidate?

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Sydney Finkelstein, a professor at Dartmouth's Tuck School of Business and author of "Superbosses" thinks most CEOs have very specific leadership checklists, whether its for a C-suite or the Oval Office.

"CEOs want someone who is agile, adaptable and flexible," said Finkelstein. "It all comes down to character, humility, intellectual honesty and the ability to learn on the job and then rise to the occasion."

Adi Ignatius, editor-in-chief of the Harvard Business Review, thinks executives will eventually find ways to work with Trump, whether they support him or not. "I don't see him being ostracized as inappropriate by a big group of CEOs. These are pragmatic people, they know they need to work with him, like him or not."

"Some of his policies, like on China and taxes, will have advocates and detractors," said Ignatius. "But remember, this is still the early stages of what Donald Trump really believes in. There's a long way to go before November elections."