Leadership / Management
Articles and Resources
Date Fairness.com Resource Read it at: May 16, 2015 Shareholders' Votes Have Done Little to Curb Lavish Executive Pay (FAIR GAME)
QUOTE: It’s been five years since the Dodd-Frank law required that companies let investors vote on their executive pay practices. The idea, lawmakers said, was to give shareholders a chance to sound off when compensation plans are not in their best interests. But has putting these matters to a vote done anything to rein in executive pay? Not a chance. Since these votes started being tallied, C.E.O. pay has risen on average 12 percent annually.
New York Times Mar 15, 2013 JPMorgan Executives Face Withering Questions at Senate Hearing
QUOTE: ...[Senator] Levin and a handful of colleagues questioned current and former executives about the bank’s risk management, oversight policies and pricing methods. The lawmakers took aim at JPMorgan for misleading investors and regulators about the disastrous bet, building off a scathing, 300-page Congressional report...
New York Times Mar 13, 2013 Military rape victims: Stop blaming us
QUOTE: McCoy was one of four alleged victims who testified Wednesday about a problem the military has acknowledged. About 19,000 men and women suffer sexual assault each year in the military, former Defense Secretary Leon Panetta said, though he noted that only about 3,200 assaults were reported.
CNN (Cable News Network) Sep 13, 2012 Greed and Debt: The True Story of Mitt Romney and Bain Capital
QUOTE: the hypocrisy at the heart of Mitt Romney. Everyone knows that he is fantastically rich, having scored great success, the legend goes, as a "turnaround specialist," a shrewd financial operator who revived moribund companies as a high-priced consultant for a storied Wall Street private equity firm. But what most voters don't know is the way Mitt Romney actually made his fortune: by borrowing vast sums of money that other people were forced to pay back.... Romney has piled more debt onto more unsuspecting companies, written more gigantic checks that other people have to cover, than perhaps all but a handful of people on planet Earth.
Rolling Stone Jul 14, 2012 35 Questions Mitt Romney Must Answer About Bain Capital Before The Issue Can Go Away
QUOTE: In times of crisis, a strong candidate will come up with answers that satisfy the basic questions surround the controversy and will make people want to move on to another subject. Romney, however, could not seem to come up with basic messages that resolved the controversies. Many of his answers seemed evasive or overly legalistic. The biggest problem for Romney is that all of his interviews have only increased the questions that political observers, voters and the media have regarding he subject of Bain Capital.
Forbes Jul 04, 2012 In Silicon Valley, Chieftains Rule With Few Checks and Balances
QUOTE: Since Google went public in 2004 in a way that maintained control for its founders, the leaders of Silicon Valley have been chary about shareholder voting rights. In the latest wave of Internet initial public offerings, shareholder voting rights have become even more diminished.
New York Times May 07, 2012 Résumé padding: inconsequential or inexcusable?
QUOTE: From a white lie about time spent as a customer service rep to a whopper about earning an MBA, résumé padding occurs regularly across industries, experts say. In a 2010 survey of 1,818 organizations, 69% reported catching a job candidate lying on his or her résumé...
CNN (Cable News Network) Apr 26, 2012 Not just Wal-Mart: Dozens of U.S. companies face bribery charges
QUOTE: Deere, Disney, Hewlett-Packard, Qualcom and many others are also under investigation for violations of the U.S. Foreign Corrupt Practices Act.
CNN (Cable News Network) Apr 21, 2012 Vast Mexico Bribery Case Hushed Up by Wal-Mart After Top-Level Struggle
QUOTE: Wal-Mart dispatched investigators to Mexico City, and within days they unearthed evidence of widespread bribery. They found a paper trail of hundreds of suspect payments totaling more than $24 million. They also found documents showing that Wal-Mart de Mexico’s top executives not only knew about the payments, but had taken steps to conceal them from Wal-Mart’s headquarters....The lead investigator recommended that Wal-Mart expand the investigation. Instead, an examination by The New York Times found, Wal-Mart’s leaders shut it down.
New York Times Mar 14, 2012 Why I Am Leaving Goldman Sachs
QUOTE: the interests of the client continue to be sidelined in the way the firm operates and thinks about making money. Goldman Sachs is one of the world’s largest and most important investment banks and it is too integral to global finance to continue to act this way. The firm has veered so far from the place I joined right out of college that I can no longer in good conscience say that I identify with what it stands for.
New York Times Mar 06, 2012 Female service members sue U.S. military for alleged rape, sexual assault
QUOTE: '"Although defendants testified before Congress and elsewhere that they have 'zero tolerance' for rape and sexual assault, their conduct and the facts demonstrate the opposite: They have a high tolerance for sexual predators in their ranks, and 'zero tolerance' for those who report rape, sexual assault and harassment," according to the lawsuit...'
CNN (Cable News Network) Nov 28, 2011 Be a Jerk: The Worst Business Lesson from the Steve Jobs Biography:
QUOTE: Apple's founder and CEO could be a cruel and nasty guy. He was also the greatest chief executive of our time. Don't go thinking those two things are related.
Atlantic Online, The (Atlantic Monthly) May 27, 2011 Easing Out the Gray-Haired. Or Not.
QUOTE: Some jobs will always have age restrictions — police officers, firefighters, air traffic controllers and the like. And in corporate America, mandatory retirement ages for senior management face less resistance, thanks in part to generous incentives to leave early that are perfectly legal. What is more, federal law permits age limits for the top brass who set corporate policy. But chief executives still have a habit of hanging on...
New York Times Apr 06, 2011 Fiesta Bowl’s Lesson: Boards Must Watch for Red Flags
QUOTE: Charitable funds have gone misspent, jobs have been lost, and the reputation of one of college football’s most prominent organizations has been sullied... The ultimate (and often unfair) question in situations like this is, Where was the board?
Chronicle of Philanthropy Mar 12, 2011 At State-Run Homes, Abuse and Impunity
QUOTE: In hundreds of cases reviewed by The Times, employees who sexually abused, beat or taunted residents were rarely fired, even after repeated offenses, and in many cases, were simply transferred to other group homes run by the state... Only a quarter of sexual abuse cases were reported... Former regulators, employees within the system and advocates have grown increasingly dismayed at what they say is the state’s tolerance of abuse of the residents, whom the state refers to as “consumers” in its records.
New York Times May 25, 2010 Crisis Places Focus on Beleaguered Agency’s Chief
QUOTE: there is uncertainty about whether she is up to the task of remaking the Minerals Management Service, an agency widely recognized as one of the most dysfunctional in government. Agency scientists and other employees complained that since taking the post in July, Ms. Birnbaum has done almost nothing to fix problems that have plagued the minerals agency for over a decade.
New York Times Nov 19, 2009 The rot spreads: Corporate crime is on the rise
QUOTE: THE recession has taken its toll on morals as well as profits.
Economist Oct 09, 2009 Does Microsoft complicate its licensing on purpose?: Recent comments from the company's CEO suggest the company has little interest in simplifying its software licensing any time soon
QUOTE: remarks made recently by Microsoft's top executive, as well as suspicions raised by customers and software consultants, suggest that Microsoft keeps its licensing complicated for a reason, and that it has no plans to make it any simpler in the foreseeable future.
InfoWorld Oct 08, 2009 Ban BlackBerrys!: Multitaskers are sabotaging your meetings. It's time to fight back. (Face-To-Face)
QUOTE: To avoid wasting time in meetings, hardcore multitaskers sit there with their faces glued to their BlackBerrys, reading e-mails while they follow the discussion with one ear. But all they are doing is making the meeting longer for everyone else.
Forbes Sep 16, 2009 Where are the subprime perp walks?: Three years after the housing bubble popped, prosecutors have yet to bring a major case tied to the subprime fiasco. What gives?
QUOTE: Three years after the housing bubble popped, federal prosecutors have yet to bring a case against the executives whose firms took part in some of the worst excesses of the subprime mortgage market.
Fortune Jul 22, 2009 In Britain, the big bonus rises again: Lawmakers and unions press for greater limits on financial institutions as some firms make sizable awards to high flyers.
QUOTE: From the depths of recession, parts of the financial world are feeling perky again. And that means: The bonus is back.
Christian Science Monitor Jul 16, 2009 Grave offenses at Arlington National Cemetery (Part 1)
QUOTE: Three former public affairs officers have recently testified under oath about a hostile work environment at Arlington [National Cemetery]. One was fired after speaking out. The other two quit in disgust. Despite nearly 10 years and countless dollars spent on computerizing its operations, the cemetery still relies mostly on paper burial records that in some cases do not match the headstones.
Salon Jul 13, 2009 What CEOs Don't Know About Cybersecurity
QUOTE: compared to lower-level execs, CEOs also tend to underestimate the frequency of cyberthreats their organization faces.
Forbes Jun 24, 2009 Steve Jobs's health: A personal or public matter?
QUOTE: Many investors see the innovative Apple CEO as fundamental to the company's success. If he's unwell, they think they should be told.
Christian Science Monitor Jun 11, 2009 Bank Chief Tells of U.S. Pressure to Buy Merrill Lynch
QUOTE: ... Kenneth D. Lewis, Bank of America’s embattled chief executive, walked into yet another Congressional hearing room...lawmakers turned the spotlight on personalities who were not seated in the chamber: the federal officials who had pushed him to complete a troubled merger with Merrill Lynch late last year, despite knowing that huge losses riddled the once-mighty Wall Street firm.
New York Times Jun 01, 2009 In Cox Years at the SEC, Policies Undercut Action: Red Tape Halted Cases, Drove Down Penalties
QUOTE: After [Christopher] Cox became SEC chairman in mid-2005, he adopted practices that undermined the enforcement division's efforts to investigate cases of corporate wrongdoing and punish those involved...
Washington Post Jan 15, 2009 Apple's Ailing CEO Takes Leave: Tech Icon's Absence Called a Blow to Firm
QUOTE: Apple co-founder Steve Jobs announced yesterday that the illness he has downplayed for months....Jobs's long-standing reluctance to discuss details of his ailment and prognosis has infuriated some investors....his piecemeal, vague health disclosures led some Apple watchers to wonder whether they might reflect a corporate decision to withhold bad news, using privacy as a shield. Or the inconsistencies of a man wrestling with his mortality.
Washington Post Jan 09, 2009 FDA scientists allege mismanagement at agency
QUOTE: Nine scientists at the Food and Drug Administration have written a letter to President-elect Barack Obama and his transition team, alleging gross mismanagement.... at the agency that has "placed the American public at risk."
CNN (Cable News Network) Dec 26, 2008 Bits: Naughtiest and Nicest C.E.O.’s
QUOTE: Glassdoor.com, a site that lets employees anonymously review their employers and share salary information, is out with a list of the naughtiest and nicest chief executives of 2008, based on those reviews.
New York Times Dec 18, 2008 On Wall Street, Bonuses, Not Profits, Were Real
QUOTE: Merrill’s record earnings in 2006 — $7.5 billion — turned out to be a mirage. The company has since lost three times that amount, largely because the mortgage investments that supposedly had powered some of those profits plunged in value. Unlike the earnings, however, the bonuses have not been reversed.
New York Times Dec 09, 2008 Accountability? Check. Authority? Not so much.
QUOTE: I have complete accountability for the company's network infrastructure and its data, but no authority over any of these...The employees treat their work computers as their own personal computers.
InfoWorld Mar 19, 2008 What went wrong
QUOTE: For the critics of modern finance, Bear's swift end on March 16th was the inevitable consequence of the laissez-faire philosophy that allowed financial services to innovate and spread almost unchecked. This has created a complex, interdependent system prone to conflicts of interest. Fraud has been rampant in the sale of subprime mortgages.
Economist Jan 23, 2008 Who's to Blame? Why capitalists are capitalism's most dangerous enemy.
QUOTE: No one can have watched the subprime mortgage debacle without noticing the absurd contrast between the magnitude of the failure and the lavish rewards heaped on those who presided over it...Everyday Americans will conclude (rightly) that this brand of capitalism is rigged in favor of the privileged few.
Newsweek Jan 22, 2008 Siemens’s Prosperity Doesn’t Obscure Bribery Scandal
QUOTE: In its investigation [of internal bribery allegations], Siemens has identified “suspicious payments” totaling 1.3 billion euros ($1.88 billion) that may have been used as bribes to win contracts.
New York Times Jan 15, 2008 Samsung Chairman’s Office Raided in Inquiry
QUOTE: The raids were the first major actions taken by Cho Joon-woong, the top special prosecutor who began his work last week with a mandate from Parliament to investigate accusations that [Lee Kun-hee] and his aides had amassed slush funds to bribe politicians, prosecutors and other government officials.
New York Times Jan 15, 2008 Ex-Officials Benefit From Corporate Cleanup
QUOTE: The lucrative arrangements [between federal prosecutors and former government officials] are known as "monitorships," unusual contracts in which an outsider comes into a troubled company with vast power to expose corruption and change business practices...But legal experts and lawmakers are expressing growing concern about inconsistency and secrecy surrounding the appointments.
Washington Post Nov 11, 2007 Forced Iraq Postings 'May Be Necessary': Volunteers Fill About Half of Embassy's 48 Open Slots, State Department Says
QUOTE: But the plan to order diplomats to take posts in Iraq if enough volunteers cannot be found -- the first time forced assignments have been contemplated since the Vietnam War -- has been controversial within and outside the service.
Washington Post Oct 11, 2007 Professors Sue Oral Roberts President
QUOTE: A suit filed by three former professors charges financial, political and personal irregularities by the president of Oral Roberts University, including a claim that he illegally mobilized students to campaign for a Republican mayoral candidate.
New York Times Jul 19, 2007 Major CEO Gaffes Call for Apology, Board Action
QUOTE: HOW DO PUBLIC COMPANIES and embarrassed execs take back control of their damaged reputations? Whole Foods (WFMI1) Chief Executive John Mackey is probably losing sleep over this very question .... [Michael] Robinson says it's crucial for management in crisis to not only apologize and work to fix the problem, but to outwardly demonstrate strong leadership.
Smart Money Jul 16, 2007 Black's conviction presents latest deterrent against CEO misdeeds: Former Hollinger CEO Conrad Black was convicted on three counts of mail fraud plus obstructing justice.
QUOTE: The message of the Enron era is still resonating for top executives: If you defraud your company, you could pay a big price. A jury in Chicago amplified that warning Friday, convicting newspaper publisher Conrad Black of looting his media empire and carting away evidence.
Christian Science Monitor Jun 26, 2007 Hospital Board Refuses To Resign: Members Contend Johnson's Demand Is Undemocratic
QUOTE: Johnson contended the move would provide more public accountability for a board whose mismanagement he says has compounded the system's problems… [But] critics believe his move against the board is a thinly veiled attempt to gain greater control over its membership and the fate of the system.
Washington Post Jun 01, 2007 Sense and Consensus
QUOTE: Consensus, then, is the guiding principal of Jeffersonian executive action. And so it is in universities. Consensus-seeking slows down decision-making sometimes disastrously, but most of the time benignly — making universities the most conservative of organizations, which rarely lose their pants in fly-by-night schemes. So, while advancement is slowed, risk is minimized.
Inside Higher Ed May 29, 2007 Excuse Me for Doing My Job: When you rise in an organization, the bad vibes can rise off other employees like steam in a Turkish bath. Liz Ryan tells you how to deal with it
QUOTE: Perhaps you've already been a victim of the "how dare you!" effect. That's the iciness directed your way when you do or get something that others feel you had no right to.
BusinessWeek May 19, 2007 Debate Rises On World Bank Succession: Some World Leaders Oppose Traditional Prerogative of U.S.
QUOTE: As the White House asserted its claim on picking Wolfowitz's successor, aid groups and former bank officials demanded that the next president be selected not in deference to the Bush administration, but on professional merits.
Washington Post May 17, 2007 Justice Weighed Firing 1 in 4: 26 Prosecutors Were Listed As Candidates
QUOTE: The Justice Department considered dismissing many more U.S. attorneys than officials have previously acknowledged, with at least 26 prosecutors suggested for termination between February 2005 and December 2006, according to sources familiar with documents withheld from the public.
Washington Post May 07, 2007 Journalists Intend to Sue Hewlett-Packard Over Surveillance
QUOTE: To try to uncover leaks from board members, private investigators examined the phone records of nine journalists who covered the company, as well as the records of some of their relatives. While the dispute revolves around the issue of how the journalists’ careers may have been damaged by having their phone records examined, the threat to sue also raises the question whether it is proper for a news organization or its reporters to sue a company they cover. It is certainly not common.
New York Times Apr 23, 2007 Fear Of Firing: How the threat of litigation is making companies skittish about axing problem workers
QUOTE: THESE WORKERS WIELD A POTENT WEAPON: They can force companies to prove in court that there was a legitimate business reason for their termination. And once a case is in court, it's expensive. A company can easily spend $100,000 to get a meritless lawsuit tossed out before trial. And if a case goes to a jury, the fees skyrocket to $300,000, and often much higher. The result: Many companies today are gripped by a fear of firing. Terrified of lawsuits, they let unproductive employees linger, lay off coveted workers while retaining less valuable ones, and pay severance to screwups and even crooks in exchange for promises that they won't sue.
BusinessWeek Apr 23, 2007 Rancor Rises Over Santa Barbara Newspaper
QUOTE: An ugly conflict involving a wealthy local publisher turned even uglier Sunday as The Santa Barbara News-Press published a front-page article suggesting that the paper’s former editor had kept child pornography on his work computer, a claim that the editor promptly denounced as “malicious.”
New York Times Jan 01, 2007 Executive Sessions: How To Use Them Regularly And Wisely
QUOTE: The notion of a private conversation for board members may seem contrary to the ethos of transparency expected of nonprofit organizations and to the development of a constructive partnership between the chief executive and the board. However, executive sessions are an effective mechanism for boards of all organizations to deal with certain kinds of issues, provided that they are called for the right reasons and handled appropriately.
BoardSource Oct 01, 2006 STATE OF DENIAL
QUOTE: There was a vast difference between what the White House and Pentagon knew about the situation in Iraq and what they were saying publicly. But the discrepancy was not surprising. In memos, reports and internal debates, high-level officials of the Bush administration have voiced their concern about the United States' ability to bring peace and stability to Iraq since early in the occupation.
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