Simon English: Telling the truth won't get you a chief executive's job in this broken system
Thursday 30 May 2013
Outlook Here is what the boss of one of Marks & Spencer's chief rivals thinks candidates to be that company's chief executive should have said to the headhunters and then the board when the job came up in 2010: "Your company is in more serious trouble than you know. It's a dinosaur. Its systems are antiquated. You've too many stores.
"Turning it around, properly fixing it so the business thrives for the next century will take about 10 years. The first five of them will be a washout. It will cost you billions. But I'm up for it. I know how to do it."
The trouble is, that strategy would ensure the candidate didn't get shortlisted. Boards and shareholders, not just at M&S, don't want to hear this stuff.
City shareholders hold stock for an average of about nine months. What they want to know is, what can you do for me now and now and now?
The ownership structure of many of Britain's biggest companies makes it very difficult to plan for the long term. So executives promise immediate results in return for "long-term incentive plans" that are anything but, dress up the numbers for a year or two, walk away with millions from the laughably named L-tip and wait for the next call.
In other words, it is impossible for executives at public companies to do the right thing and get the job.
That sounds like a description of a system that is broken.
- 1 Malaysian cyclist could face disciplinary action after 'Save Gaza' gloves protest
- 2 Is Gideon Levy the most hated man in Israel or just the most heroic?
- 3 Fifty Shades of Grey trailer provokes moral outrage from US parenting groups
- 4 McDonald’s removes chicken nuggets from the menu in Hong Kong amid major food scare
- 5 Students offered grants if they tweet pro-Israeli propaganda
Israel-Gaza conflict: Israeli targeting policy under scrutiny after shellfire hits a mother and child, a school full of refugees and a doctor’s home
MH17 crash: Investigators discover more human remains and 'huge section of plane'
Students offered grants if they tweet pro-Israeli propaganda
McDonald’s removes chicken nuggets from the menu in Hong Kong amid major food scare
Satellite full of sexually experimental geckos adrift in space, Russia loses control of mission
The 'scroungers’ fight back: The welfare claimants battling to alter stereotypes
Arizona execution lasts two hours as killer Joseph Wood left 'snorting and gasping' for air
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Ukrainian military jet was flying close to passenger plane before it was shot down, says Russian officer
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Massive rise in sale of British arms to Russia
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: victims’ bodies bundled in black bags and loaded onto trains
John Barrowman praised for Commonwealth Games opening ceremony gay kiss
iJobs Money & Business
£600 - £650 per day: Orgtel: Conduct Risk Liaison Manager - Banking - London -...
£18000 - £23000 per annum + Comission: SThree: SThree, International Recruitme...
£280 - £300 per day + competitive: Orgtel: Test Analyst, Edinburgh, Credit Ris...
£20000 - £25000 per annum + OTE £40,000: SThree: SThree Group have been well e...