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By the time I stepped down as Xerox's CEO in 2009 - and as chairman in January 2010 - Xerox had become the vibrant, profitable and revitalized company that it still is today. What made the difference was a strong turnaround plan, dedicated people and a firm commitment from company leaders.
Anne M. Mulcahy
When you're CEO, you have to have two conditions: first, shareholders need to trust you and want you to head your company. The second is that you need to feel the motivation to do the job. So, as long as both are reunited, you continue to do the job.
American culture is CEO obsessed. We celebrate the hard-charging heroes and mythologize the iconoclastic visionaries. Those people are important.
In 2000, when my partner Ben Horowitz was CEO of the first cloud computing company, Loudcloud, the cost of a customer running a basic Internet application was approximately $150,000 a month.
Any enterprise CEO really ought to be able to ask a question that involves connecting data across the organization, be able to run a company effectively, and especially to be able to respond to unexpected events. Most organizations are missing this ability to connect all the data together.
Just because you are CEO, don't think you have landed. You must continually increase your learning, the way you think, and the way you approach the organization. I've never forgotten that.
Remember when those CD-ROMs from AOL came in the mail almost every day? The company was considered ubiquitous, invincible. Former AOL CEO Steve Case was no less a genius than Mark Zuckerberg.
I like the city. I like the concrete. I like big business. I like being a CEO of my own company and having a lot of responsibilities. At the same time, when I can go off with a backpack or off on a surfboard or even off on a run somewhere in the woods - that's where I'm really happy.
If I was President of the United States, I'd rather be right than interesting. If I was CEO of a company, I'd rather be right than interesting. But I'm a journalist - what journalist would rather be right than interesting?
A critical question to ask when bringing in a new CEO to take the reins of a company you started is: Do you want someone who will maintain company culture or reinvent it?
There are a lot of things about having money that are perceived to be cool but that aren't. Maybe if you're a CEO jerk who likes going coast to coast by himself in a G4, then that's fine. But that's not me. And it never will be.
In life, you don't have a level of confrontation and the nonsense you run into when you're a CEO. CEOs aren't born.
Professional societies are sooner or later fractured by the ego of their leaders. Everyone wants to be president, chairman, CEO; no one wants to be a mere follower.
F. Sionil Jose
I think if there's any difference between me and a traditional CEO, it's that I've been unwilling to change myself or shape my personality around what's expected.
I was an All-American in wrestling in high school, was National Champion in Chinese kickboxing in 1999 and have spent a lot of time around professional athletes, which includes my eight-plus years as CEO of a sports nutrition company.
You know, you go home and you try on a new mascara, and I guess a male CEO can't do that.
You won't find a CEO who doesn't talk about a 'powerful culture' as a source of competitive advantage. At the same time, you'd be hard-pressed to find a CEO who has much of a clue about the strength of that culture.
The one thing I have learned as a CEO is that leadership at various levels is vastly different. When I was leading a function or a business, there were certain demands and requirements to be a leader. As you move up the organization, the requirements for leading that organization don't grow vertically; they grow exponentially.
If I invest in a CEO, I need him or her to have experience in sales.
Fortunately, right now 'entrepreneurship' is one of the business world's biggest buzz words and so many young people in our country are looking up to this new generation of CEO's as their modern day rock stars. Whenever you have that effect, it makes the job of promoting entrepreneurship much easier.
Board meetings should not be for the benefit of the board. They should be for the benefit of the CEO and the senior team.
We're living under the Obama economy. Any CEO in America with a record like this after three years on the job would be graciously shown the door. This president blames the managers instead. He blames the folks on the shop floor. He blames the weather.
I am who I am, and I'm focused on that, and being a great CEO of Apple.
Talking about Apple v. Microsoft without mentioning the Internet and the browser is like talking about WWII without talking about the nuke. Framing the conversation just in terms of open v. closed operating systems, the quality of the hardware or software or who the CEO was, is silly.
If Albert Einstein was right, Cal Ripken should have been a CEO or politician rather than a shortstop, because Ripken led by example over and over... and over again.
John F. Kennedy
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