The Business On... Virginia Rometty, chief executive, IBM
Thursday 27 October 2011
Ginni to her friends
She is personable, charming, and ambitious – and now one of the most powerful scuba diving enthusiasts in the world.
So congratulations, then.
The Midwesterner and Big Blue lifer is in the pink. She has just become the ninth chief executive of IBM. It is a company she joined just a few years out of college in 1981, and she is its first female boss. Sam Palmisano, her predecessor, who has led celebrations for IBM's centenary this year is staying on as chairman.
"Ginni got it because she deserved it. It's got zero to do with progressive social policies."
"I learned to always take on things I'd never done before."
Why did the board pick her?
Ms Rometty came to prominence when she integrated the PricewaterhouseCooper consultancy business that IBM bought in 2002, fighting the corner of those consulting types who feared they would all be forced to stay in budget hotels and submit to IBM's old monolithic culture. Instead, consulting is now the driving force of the company's growth. She recently took charge of marketing and strategy, too, so was by far the favourite to take over.
Any advice to aspiring women executives?
Actually, she does. She tells the story of being offered a huge promotion earlier in her career, to which she responded that she wasn't sure she was ready and could she sleep on it? "Do you think a man would ever have answered that way?" she says. "You have to be confident, even when you are so self-critical inside."
- 1 Venezuela Expo Tattoo 2015: Extreme body art from 'Vampire Woman' to 109mm earlobes
- 3 Ball pool for adults opens in London
- 4 Amal Clooney gives excellent response to fashion question at European Court of Human Rights
- 5 Canadian woman suing police who locked her in van with sex offender who then raped her
Saudi preacher who 'raped and tortured' his five -year-old daughter to death is released after paying 'blood money'
Putin opponent reveals Russian President's daughter's secret identity
Ball pool for adults opens in London
Gay couple buy JebBushForPresident.com web domain, and refuse to sell
Canadian woman suing police who locked her in van with sex offender who then raped her
9 reasons Greece's experiment with the radical left is doomed to failure
Have we reached 'peak food'? Shortages loom as global production rates slow
Greece elections: Syriza and EU on collision course after election win for left-wing party
British grandmother Lindsay Sandiford faces execution by firing squad in Indonesia
Stephen Fry explains what he would say if he was 'confronted by God'
Liberal Democrat minister defends comments suggesting immigration causes pub closures
Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: One of the world's leading suppliers and manuf...
£6240 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Apprentices are required to join a privat...
£40000 per annum: Sauce Recruitment: This is an exciting opportunity for a HR...
£35000 - £40000 per annum: Ashdown Group: A well-established organisation oper...