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Jerry Yang Making A Fool of Himself

Jerry Yang - CEO, Yahoo

Jerry Yang - CEO, Yahoo

Yahoo’s current CEO Jerry Yang very recently gave an interview in the Web 2.0 Summit that has been described as a train wreck, self-delusional, and as making a mockery of the vaunted company he helped create. Andy Beal of Marketing Pilgrim thinks that Jerry should step down from the CEO post and TechCrunch on the other hand states Jerry is Just Out of Gas!

I seriously don’t understand what is wrong with him. I know that it’s not easy to become the CEO of a company like Yahoo!, but lets face the facts — he was never forced to become the CEO, He wanted it badly to bring change in the company back in June 2007. In the official Yahoo Blog he wrote (June 18th 2007) –

I look forward to teaming more closely with her as we pursue our joint vision. What is that vision? A Yahoo! that executes with speed, clarity and discipline. A Yahoo! that increases its focus on differentiating its products and investing in creativity and innovation. A Yahoo! that better monetizes its audience. A Yahoo! whose great talent is galvanized to address its challenges. And a Yahoo! that is better focused on what’s important to its users, customers, and employees.

Lets identify the key points from the above quote:

  • Focus on Differentiating Products & Investing in Creativity & Innovation
  • – They have been very late to adapt to change and often acted as a ‘copy cat’.

  • Monetize the Yahoo Audience
  • – Yahoo still can’t monetize their audience well.

  • Focus on What’s important to Users, Customer & Employees
  • – They are still far behind in determining whats important for their users & customers and most importantly they can’t make their shareholders happy.

And last but not the least, two major deals (one with Microsoft & Google) were canceled while he is still holding his chair. Now I know he may only take a $1 dollar pay cheque from Yahoo, but that certainly doesn’t give him the right to destroy Yahoo completely. When Microsoft came knocking at Yahoo’s door a number times with an acquisition offer of $31/per share, Jerry was not willing to sell his company to Microsoft and now suddenly after being dumped by Google from their ad deal, Jerry says – “Its best for Microsoft to Buy Yahoo…”. Just watch the video and see how Jerry Yang, the current CEO of Yahoo! Makes a complete fool of himself!


  • Reply Pax |

    Carl Icahn can go to h*ll. Yahoo doesn’t need to sell. There are way too many people within Yahoo that have been looking to cash-in now and that’s the real problem.

    Icahn, corporate raider has forced himself (along with two cronies) unto Yahoo’s board. This slime bought short (50 million shares last I checked) and has been looking to rake in another pile of cash. That’s his only interest. The pressure he’s applying is enormous.

    As a web-based company, Yahoo still makes MS look like amateurs. While Google (and MS) have been pushing to get into other devices and growing (or trying to grow) into other areas, Yahoo has been standing pat because of this get-rich quick mindset.

    Now Jerry Yang sounds like he’s trying to accommodate a bunch of old crow$ and make the wrong people happy (and avoid the kind of legal fights Icahn threatened). This is what all this “culture” talk is about.

    This kind of thinking has been going on for over a year. I wish Yahoo the best and hope that the culture within Yahoo changes once again to what brought them here in the first place.

    MS buying Yahoo would be like turning green pastures into swamp water.

  • Reply Saad |

    Well they need to make money in order to make their shareholders happy, Don’t you think? Its a Business after all.

    Yeah I dont like the idea of MS eating up Yahoo either. But everything is now pointing towards that direction…

  • Reply Pax |

    @Saad – “they need to make money…”

    I agree but that wasn’t the point of my post:-) Sometimes a company kinda’ gives up. It’s like a homeowner getting ready to sell their home. They fix up some of the obvious problems, add a porch, new paint job, etc.. The minor fixes raise the value of the property substantially. The only one who should be interested is the person buying the home (and the seller). What does this do for you?

    Yahoo! has lost the ‘eye of the tiger’ because nearly everyone making decisions there are speaking behind a full set of dentures and hoarding all the cash they can because they think they can take it with them when they die.

    This is old-school thinking…

    In contrast, you take a look at sites like Google, Digg and others…

    These guys haven’t given up and are trying to make money via various sources – taking a look at demographics, creating, adjusting, planning for the long-term. You’ll note that Yahoo! is on this list, MS is not.

    Yahoo! is too important to the internet to be swallowed up by a word-processing company featuring 10,000 fonts.

  • Reply Saad |

    Lol, I nearly spilled the coffee on my table after reading the last two lines of your comment.

    Well I certainly agree and I totally get your point now :) Yahoo doesn’t have any “high hopes” anymore, they are acting that they have live under someone’s mercy. But a Giant organization like Yahoo shouldn’t act like a child at this stage…

    Ok lets say…MSFT refuses to take Yahoo then what should yahoo do? Can they start again and take their company in the similar level like their competitors? (in terms of Growth, Profitability & every other aspect).

    Most importantly….Should the current CEO (Jerry Yang) Step down? It has often been told that Google’s success depends a lot on how they do think and do business and their current CEO is certainly a key here.

    Instead of paying jerry $1, isn’t it better to give the job to someone who can take this more seriously and perhaps draw a bigger pay cheque for himself?

  • Reply Pax |

    I think that Jerry was actually trying to find a successor – someone that was going to take this company seriously – it wasn’t all about the money. The interviewer seemed to miss this point entirely.

    Like a lot of people, he couldn’t bare to see his creation (along with Filio) destroyed by the blob that is Microsoft.

    Sadly, it may be too late because it seems that there are a lot of “serious” people over at Yahoo! itching to make any kind of deal. I don’t think that the people over there really care about bringing in a new CEO, they just want to sell. Jerry Yang needs to know that he has a lot of people rooting for him, especially technoGeeks who care more about ‘the tech’ than business.

    Ballmer already said he’s not interested (causing Yahoo’s stock price to fall). If true, this may be the best thing to happen to Yahoo! It may be enough to get Yahoo! moving forward again – which I really think they can do.

    I did a quick search and it looks like Yahoo, though having some financial troubles, isn’t a company that’s sinking. They’re still making money:

    Note: Yahoo isn’t the only company making cuts (eBay and even Google have made some adjustments according to the article).

    Sorry for the long reply but the most important point is how ‘cloud’ computing is going to effect the game. MS is still playing catch-up, like always. Yahoo, like Google, are entrenched. Yahoo needs to start thinking how the landscape is going to change in the next few years (netbooks, MIDs, offline storage, smarterPhones, Browser tech (miniBrowsertech), etc..).

    It’s almost like Yahoo has been preparing for the ‘cloud’ their entire existence and when it’s about to appear, they give it to someone else…

  • Reply Saad |

    Thanks Pax for your comment. Hay don’t worry, I really appreciate you coming here and sharing your views with us.

    Well Yahoo’s share price has already dropped because of Balmer’s recent announcement.

So, what do you think ?