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Gerstner maybe not the savior of IBM?

Check out Cringley's article on this here:

This is an old Cringley article, but it brings up some interesting points and the guy seems to have a lot of info on how IBM works.  He provides many specific examples of IBM's shortcomings, as examples in other companies (for example, he brings up the much villianized Scully from Apple). 
Anyway, is anyone else amazed by how CEO's are viewed as company saviors one year and then are trashed and villified 4 or 5 years down the road (or a decade in Gerstner's case)? This points to the issue of having topical, *temporary* success without actually improving the root cause of problems. 
Cringley also points out that most CEOs have one or two trick ponies that they take with them throughout their careers.  This was one of those facts that you "kind of know", but don't *really* know until you see it articulated.  It makes one wonder if there is any real way to measure success.  I guess only time can do that...

Tuesday, November 19, 2002

10 years is a long time - how different are you and the way you do things now as compared to 10 years ago. Cringely's point of these guys only having one or two tricks is probably a valid one, though.

A lot of people don't seem to like Cringely although I'm always interested to hear what he's got to say. is a more recent article in a similar vein that I found very relevant.

Tuesday, November 19, 2002

Most of the article seems reasonable, at least if the facts are correct, but one thing worries me (well, not really :-).

"Link manager compensation to profitability, and have real ways of measuring that profitability."

Which will most likely lead to managers make short-term decissions that boost profitability, but undermines the future.
And having real ways of measuring profitability safely ignores customer satisfaction and personell satisfaction.

So to me this advice seems to go against the whole point of the rest of the article.

Wednesday, November 20, 2002

And then I read the second article. Which seems to make an excelent case against linking compensation to profitability.


Wednesday, November 20, 2002

Sounds like an equivocation on "profit" to me.  Long-term profitability -- that is, managing a company so that it will make money in the long run -- is a kind of profitability that isn't popular in U.S. (and sattelites) companies anymore.  Too bad.

Acowymous Nonerd
Wednesday, November 20, 2002

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