8 Game Changers Who Brought Riches to Companies   Leave a comment


Any company to make its place among the top companies needs to have unparalleled people who build strong pillars on which a company’s success gets positioned. They may hold any grade from a product visionary to a whistleblower CEO, from campaigning wizards to outstanding coaches. But their ingenious thinking can make bullions (gold) to a company. Many companies fate have taken a twirl around renovation where these key people fixed long pressing apprehensions of the company. Such people are known as ‘the Notorious Game Changers’. Here is the list of those aggressive individuals who made radical decisions which conceded companies to go sky rocket.

Dick Costolo, CEO Twitter: In October 2010, Dick was promoted from COO to CEO. Dick took over from the then CEO Evan Williams. The position was supposed to be temporary but when Evan went on for paternity leave, the position became a permanent one.

Beginning his reign, Costolo charted out new business moves which impressed the company and boosted its confidence. Under his guidance, twitter relaunched their iphone app with a brand new look. He also introduced the self service ad product for small and medium size businesses in December of last year. The product helps businesses to run their campaigns and promote their products to twitter users. In May of 2011, it was announced that President Obama appointed Dick Costolo to the National Security Telecommunications Advisory Committee along with Corporate Vice President of Microsoft’s Trustworthy Computing Group Scott Charney and McAfee President of Security David DeWalt.

Carolyn Everson, VP- Advertising, Facebook:

Facebook relationship with advertising agencies has always been critical. Knowing the kind of potential they hold in advertising and marketing, Facebook decided to bring in Carolyn Everson who was a top advertising executive at Microsoft.

Everson has been placed in Madison Avenue a hotspot for advertising agencies where she works with analysts to make the best of advertising campaigns to bag in the big fishes. Ever since her take over as the Vice President of Advertising at Facebook, she has been wooing the biggest brands and top agencies by mending the relationship of the company with advertisers.

Prior to Facebook and Microsoft, Everson worked at MTV. While she was trying to make a deal between Microsoft and MTV, impressed with her deal making proficiency, Steve Ballmer welcomed her to join Microsoft. She worked of nine months at Microsoft after which she was approached by Facebook.

Dan Akerson, CEO, General Motors:

Daniel Francis Akerson succeeded Edward Whitacre to become Chairman and CEO of General Motors in September of 2010. Akerson made drastic changes in the company and enhanced the decision making process of the company by eliminating all 30 internal boards.

Akerson has always been known as ‘a blunt-spoken, aggressive competitor.’ Prior to General Motors Akerson worked at The Carlyle Group, an American company that does global asset management for top companies.

Akerson has an extensive resume with lots of corporate and private equity experience, but has had no experience running an industrial company like GM. Akerson is better known for his financial skills. But General Motors, during Akerson’s first year of tenure in 2011, earned a record $7.6 billion in profit off of $150.3 billion in sales.

Bob Diamond, CEO, Barclays:

Bob Diamond popularly known as ‘the unacceptable face of banking’ became the successor of Barclays on January 1 of 2011. Prior to Barclays, he was head of Barclays Capital. Profits at the investment banking division almost doubled to 4.78 billion pounds in 2010.

According to Diamond, Barclays had to take some bigger risks in order to boosts its chances of reaching its profitability targets. In his tenure at the Barclays Capital, the bank reported pre-tax profits of 6.07 billion pounds for 2010, a rise of almost a third on the 4.59 billion pounds profit the bank made the previous year.

Bob Diamond has introduced what he calls ‘the no-jerk rule’ and has encouraged at least 40 executives at his firm to find jobs elsewhere.The American-born chief executive of Barclays said he does not care how good people are at what they do, if they are not suitable, they will be asked to leave.

So far he claims dozens of executives have been shown the door after behaving like jerks or spending lavish amounts of money. Diamond also said if bankers act like ‘Prima Donnas’ or don’t get along with their colleagues they can work elsehwere.’You know what a jerk is when you see it,’ he said. ‘If we ever ignore the rule it always comes back to haunt us.’

The millionaire, who boasts high profits, big bonuses and an annual salary of 6.75 million pounds, said the ‘greed is good’ attitude of some bankers was ‘a bit’ of a jerk thing to do as quoted by Mail Online

Sam Lessin

Sam Lessin is the Product Manager of Facebook. He has founded Drop.io, which is an online file sharing service. He has also created applications like letter.ly and csvemail. Facebook acquired Drop.io in 2010, and this is how Sam Lessin joined Facebook and joined its Product Management team. Drop.io was a file hosting and sharing tool which allowed users to exchange files or drops privately with their friends through web, email, or phone. After this acquisition all accounts in Drop.io was officially closed and users were bit annoyed as it was a great tool. But this acquisition of Facebook was a great success. Drop.io was named as one of TIME Magazine’s 50 Best Websites of 2009 and CNET Webware 100.

Ross Levinsohn

Ross Levinsohn is the Executive Vice President of the Americas Region, Yahoo, hired on November 2010. Levinsohn is responsible for Yahoo!’s North, Central and South American business including advertising sales, partnerships and media. Formerly he was the Managing Director of Fuse Capital, and President at Fox Interactive Media prior to this. Levinsohn is a Communications’ Graduate from The American University. Within less than a year, he turned the face of Yahoo and stated that, “I joined Yahoo for a specific reason: There aren’t many platforms like this in the world. It certainly has been an interesting ride for the last 11 months. I wouldn’t trade it for anything”, as told to Forbes.

Meg Whitman

Meg Whitman is the President and Chief Executive Officer of Hewlett-Packard since September 2011. She has also served as a member of the Board of Directors of HP since January 2011. Prior becoming the President at Hewlett Packard, Whitman served as a part-time strategic advisor to Kleiner, Perkins, Caulfield & Byers, a private equity firm. She renewed the focus of HP’s Research and Development division. Her major decision during her first year as CEO was to retain and recommit the firm to the PC business. In her first email after joining HP, she wrote, “(I want to) invest in innovation, leverage the strength of our core businesses, enhance our software capabilities and integrate our assets to maximize the value of our investments”, (as quoted by mashable.com) which she made possible within these years.

Michael Woodford

Michael C. Woodford is a British businessman who is the former President and CEO of Olympus Corporation. He received the honour of Sunday Times Businessperson, Independent Businessperson, and The Sun Businessperson of the Year 2011. After six months as a President of Olympus and two weeks prior being promoted as CEO, he was exposed as ‘one of the biggest and longest-running loss-hiding arrangements in Japanese corporate history’, as per Wall Street journal and was also called as the Whistleblower of the year by the same. But he made his comeback by launching a campaign after Japanese institutional investors failed to express confidence in his leadership and regained the role on the board which he lost.

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Posted March 12, 2012 by avinash2060 in Leadership

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