Management Turnover as Change Agent

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

GM Update: It's official - Henderson out, Time Magazine's Alex Taylor III Explains Why

Alex Taylor III wrote a brief story for Time on GM’s surprise announcement that Fritz Henderson was out as GM’s CEO and Ed Whitacre, GM’s chairman would serve as interim CEO until replacement is found. Taylor was right on the mark in his explanation. IN the story he wrote,

Henderson will be remembered as being as smart and experienced as any GM CEO, but he appeared tone-deaf when it came to listening to Whitacre and the rest of his board of directors. Since he had no role in picking them and they owed him nothing, that proved to be a fatal mistake.

When the board made it clear that it wanted Henderson to replace chief financial officer Ray Young, Henderson dawdled. He could rightly complain that government curbs on executive pay made it difficult to recruit experienced financial executives, but it must have looked to the board as if he couldn’t make a decision or was simply stalling.

Check it out, it’s worth the read.

For a bit more read:


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