Tuesday, August 16, 2005


Here are excerpts from an article in Fast Company worth re-publishing:

by Jennifer Reingold

It's the new era of accountability: Most of the nation's worst-performing bosses have been shown the door.

The death certificates have been signed. The eulogies have been written. The bagpipes have sounded. That's right, folks. The era of the Imperial CEO is officially over. Thanks to the humiliating collapse of the fraud-riddled likes of Enron, HealthSouth, Tyco, and WorldCom, chief executives today are about as respected as, oh, Internet stock analysts.

And they have about as much job security, too. A CEO no longer has to be photographed on a perp walk, handcuffs scraping cuff links, in order to get the boot; heads are now rolling for the slightest whiff of impropriety. In June, Freddie Mac wiped out much of its C-suite -- its CEO, COO, and CFO -- amid an accounting probe. Another prominent departure of late was American Airlines chief Donald Carty, forced out after neglecting to mention a special bonus pool for top executives while he was asking stewardesses and pilots to take massive pay cuts.

But as the bills come due for the millennium's excesses, many executives are losing their jobs for much less. These days, bosses may actually be shown the door for something as simple as poor performance (imagine that!). Just ask Ford's Jacques Nasser (broomed in 2001); Vivendi's Jean-Marie Messier (2002); EDS's Dick Brown (2003); AOL-Time Warner's Gerald Levin (2002); and -- hello, again, AOL-Time Warner -- Steve Case (2003).

A stunning 78% of the CEOs at the worst-performing 20% of companies in the S&P 500 have been replaced within the past five years. "The way companies are managed is more by the numbers now," says Chuck Lucier, senior vice president emeritus at Booz Allen Hamilton. "If an executive doesn't perform today, he gets shot."

For the rest of the story go to www.fastcompany.com


No comments: