5 CEOs who should already have been fired

Forbes compiles a wish list.

Amid the CEOcalyspe that has been happening for the last few weeks, with Scott Thompson resigning, and Jamie “a billion here, a billion there" Dillon in hot water, Forbes have compiled a wish list of CEOS they think deserve to get fired:

1. Steve Ballmer, Microsoft

"Without a doubt, Mr. Ballmer is the worst CEO of a large publicly traded American company today.  Not only has he singlehandedly steered Microsoft out of some of the fastest growing and most lucrative tech markets (mobile music, handsets and tablets) but in the process he has sacrificed the growth and profits of not only his company but “ecosystem” companies such as Dell, Hewlett Packard and even Nokia."

2. Edward Lampert, Sears Holdings

"Hope springs eternal in the micro-managing Mr. Lampert.  Everyone knows of his personal fortune (#367 on Forbes list of billionaires.)  But Mr. Lampert has destroyed Sears.  The company may already be so far gone as to be unsavable."

3. Mike Duke, WalMart.

"We now know Mr. Duke’s business unit saw no problems with bribing foreign officials to grow its business.  Just on the basis of knowing about illegal activity, not doing anything about it (and probably condoning and recommending more,) and then trying to change U.S. law to diminish the legal repercussions, Mr. Duke should have long ago been fired."

4. Jeffrey Immelt, General Electric

"What has Mr. Immelt, in his decade at the top of GE, done to keep GE as one of the world’s most innovative, high growth companies?  He has steered the ship away from trouble, but it’s only gone in circles as it’s used up fuel."

5. John Chambers, Cisco Systems

"Mr. Chambers has reorganized the company 3 times – but it has been much like rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic.  Lots of confusion, but no improvement in results."

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Theresa May’s stage-managed election campaign keeps the public at bay

Jeremy Corbyn’s approach may be chaotic, but at least it’s more authentic.

The worst part about running an election campaign for a politician? Having to meet the general public. Those ordinary folk can be a tricky lot, with their lack of regard for being on-message, and their pesky real-life concerns.

But it looks like Theresa May has decided to avoid this inconvenience altogether during this snap general election campaign, as it turns out her visit to Leeds last night was so stage-managed that she barely had to face the public.

Accusations have been whizzing around online that at a campaign event at the Shine building in Leeds, the Prime Minister spoke to a room full of guests invited by the party, rather than local people or people who work in the building’s office space.

The Telegraph’s Chris Hope tweeted a picture of the room in which May was addressing her audience yesterday evening a little before 7pm. He pointed out that, being in Leeds, she was in “Labour territory”:

But a few locals who spied this picture online claimed that the audience did not look like who you’d expect to see congregated at Shine – a grade II-listed Victorian school that has been renovated into a community project housing office space and meeting rooms.

“Ask why she didn’t meet any of the people at the business who work in that beautiful building. Everyone there was an invite-only Tory,” tweeted Rik Kendell, a Leeds-based developer and designer who says he works in the Shine building. “She didn’t arrive until we’d all left for the day. Everyone in the building past 6pm was invite-only . . . They seemed to seek out the most clinical corner for their PR photos. Such a beautiful building to work in.”

Other tweeters also found the snapshot jarring:

Shine’s founders have pointed out that they didn’t host or invite Theresa May – rather the party hired out the space for a private event: “All visitors pay for meeting space in Shine and we do not seek out, bid for, or otherwise host any political parties,” wrote managing director Dawn O'Keefe. The guestlist was not down to Shine, but to the Tory party.

The audience consisted of journalists and around 150 Tory activists, according to the Guardian. This was instead of employees from the 16 offices housed in the building. I have asked the Conservative Party for clarification of who was in the audience and whether it was invite-only and am awaiting its response.

Jeremy Corbyn accused May of “hiding from the public”, and local Labour MP Richard Burgon commented that, “like a medieval monarch, she simply briefly relocated her travelling court of admirers to town and then moved on without so much as a nod to the people she considers to be her lowly subjects”.

But it doesn’t look like the Tories’ painstaking stage-management is a fool-proof plan. Having uniform audiences of the party faithful on the campaign trail seems to be confusing the Prime Minister somewhat. During a visit to a (rather sparsely populated) factory in Clay Cross, Derbyshire, yesterday, she appeared to forget where exactly on the campaign trail she was:

The management of Corbyn’s campaign has also resulted in gaffes – but for opposite reasons. A slightly more chaotic approach has led to him facing the wrong way, with his back to the cameras.

Corbyn’s blunder is born out of his instinct to address the crowd rather than the cameras – May’s problem is the other way round. Both, however, seem far more comfortable talking to the party faithful, even if they are venturing out of safe seat territory.

Anoosh Chakelian is senior writer at the New Statesman.

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