The advice from the song is classic and applies to every decision imaginable. Too many great companies have failed because of management's ego or insistence they are right and everybody else is wrong. That's what boards are directors are for -- a reality check. Sounds like it might be time for RIM's top management to walk away...or at least consider some of the criticism being levelled at them
@Barbara, that's correct the song applies to every decision making process imaginable. More importantly it is more or less sounding a wakeup call to RIM's board of directors to wake up and decide on the future of the company's direction before it becomes too late.
Venture capitalists and Day Traders are better at investing without emotions. They cash in their profits at predetermined levels and exit at predetermined loss levels. They understand this is about making or losing money and don't get involved in who founded what etc. Company founders, on the other hand, feel like they are losing their baby when they have to part with the enterprise. The board of directors usually step in at points like this. That's why what's happening at RIM is so difficult to comprehend.
This is good Bolaji, at the early stage, usually, founders are same people in charge of running the company for both technical and business matter, but once "the baby" is growing, it should be wise, as their attitude, to go away. On the other hand, especially during current financial crisis, the presence of people have founded the company, could represent, for investors, a positive aspect for providing funds.
@_hm, to answer your question, I understand the dillemma confronting founders and CEOs of these organisations and I'm sure it is an unbearable and heart wrenching decision and position to be to let go of your pet project, your dream, your baby. I think it should be an achievement for any CEO or Founders to allow a capable hand(s) carry on with this dream and seeing it flourish. If this action will essentially bring about the betterment of the company, absolutely yes. Which would you prefer, a sinking ship or one where letting go will turn the business around?
Now, with reference to RIM,this is a company that's achieved great success with its unique services e.g messaging service etc,and has reaped and still reaping financial rewards for its shareholders and all.This alone isn't sufficient to keep the business afloat. I think to carry on the successes of this company, the board of directors need to come up with a quick decision - a decision that will change its current position and outlook in the market place.
@Anna: Sometime person becomes possive for quite ccomplex reasons. He/She may not pass controls to his own children. In hindsight, this may be normal life cycle of most business empire. They may last few decades and after that they succumb to new entrants. RIM has not so long period due to nature of its field.
If the founding fathers of a company are too emotionally involved to satisy the needs of shareholders the shareholders should either bring in "unemotional" management or let the company go private again if the deal is possible.
@FlyingScot, true if the shareholders are nolonger satisfied and are unable to ascertain the benefits and rewards from their investments, due to clouded judgement on the Founder's part or the CEO, It's the board of directors role to meet and make the necessary decisions based on facts and figures. I hope and I'm sure this is what the board of directors of RIM are currently deliberating - next step forward.
It sounds like they may be folding their co-chair CEO structure, which is probably a good move on two levels - structure and personnel. It is unfortunate that it has to come to painful management changes, but certainly isn't unusual.
RIM's co-chairmen and co-CEO system is infantile. What happened? The two officers (Michael Lazaridis and James Balsillie) couldn't agree on who should have the bigger office? What did they do? Split the corner office? It sounds more like two kids arguing over who should have the bigger piece of the pie. What's even more mindboggling is the fact a board of directors is presiding over this situation.
Well, regardless of whether the relationship between the co-CEOs is good or bad, it deson't seem like a responsive management structure. Maybe it also indicates that they are afraid to makea decision, which isn't a good situation either.
They may be afraid to make decision if they don't know what to benefits. The board has to analysed their structure and consider the various benefits of reshuffling their leadership and appointing a new head, the two CEOs also have to relinguished their current positions in the company's board.
@Bolaji, It's obvious this is probably the cause of misdirection within the organisation. If two can't work together, then it's best they tender their resignation. I think it's time for this change. It is owed to the company's shareholders.
@Eldredge, RIM's management changes is a good move. Merely replacing the co-chairs (Mike Lazaridis and Jim Balsillie) is a wise move, however, would it bring the quick expected turn around? I very much doubt this. I think further management restructure is still required.
The news reports are also indicating that RIM is prepared to license their operating system, to help generate revenue> this seems like agood move also, because they can benefit from the sale of competitors products.
Eldredge, The step towards licensing the RIM OS to rivals may be one good action too late. The update to that operating system has been pushed out so why would a rival want to license the use of an already stale product. What RIM could do is offer its Blackberry Messenger (BBM) and the technology behind its proprietary and secure messaging system. That will certainly attract some interest. It might even position Blackberry OS as a viable alternative to both Apple iOs, Google Android and Windows OS.
@Eldredge, It's good the company is considering various options. It is still a speculation that RIM has agreed to licence its software to Samsung Electronics co.ltd and HTC corp. This indicates the urgency of situation facing RIM. Would review to license its software a good move? I really don't know. Plus it's not been confirmed yet. What is crucial at this stage for RIM, is the urgency to decide on the next probable direction.
Ariella, You and Anna Young seem to be having so much fun on this subject of supply chain and lyrics, I would like to commission you both to write a blog each on the lessons the electronics industry can learn from songs. Lyrics only, please and deadline? Not, "when the saints go marching in. . . "
@t.alex, dont you think RIM's distinctive features of BBM such as end-to-end security worthy of valuable asset? And besides, if consumers of smartphones are more security concious, Blackberry users may have increased in numbers. RIM's OS security feature, i think more trusted compare to Android OS.
I think at this point RIM's best bet is to merge or be sold to another company or to license out its OS and products. One of the nest things RIM has going for it is their mail service. No other platform allows multiple email accounts to be managed and work efficiently like Blackberry's. For this reason alone my wife, who has upwards of 8 different accounts because of work and personal email, can't get rid of her Blackberry to get another OS. If another platform could utilize the email service and give great features, my wife and many other Blackberry users would be on board in a heartbeat.
Jay_Bond, I agree Blackberry's email account is unparalleled. The multiple mail service offered by Blackberry is the reason my family and I couldn't get rid of our blackberry phones. I think it's best RIM merge with similar company.
I don't know if RIM has ever realized that they have been distrupted in the smartphone market and are doomed to see their market share erode to irrelevance. They need to consider what their core competence is and keep it. If RIM had the right leadership and perhaps embraced just one CEO rather than two, it could take this opportunity in turbulent times to change, evolve and grow.
EBN Dialogue enables and encourages you to participate in live chats with notable leaders and luminaries. Not only editors and journalists, but the entire EBN community is able to comment and ask questions. Listed below are upcoming and archived chats.
Thailand Stages a Comeback Join EBN contributor Jennifer Baljko on Thursday August 23, 2012, at 11:00 a.m. EST for a live chat on how electronic manufacturers in Thailand have shored up their supply chain to reduce the impact of future natural disasters.
Microsoft Surface: Potential Winners & Losers What are the implications for the electronics industry supply chain of Microsoft Corp.'s decision to launch its own tablet PC? Join industry veteran and EE Times' systems and OEM expert Rick Merritt on Tuesday, July 3, at 12:00 pm EDT for a Live Chat on this subject.
Join EBN contributor Jennifer Baljko on Thursday August 23, 2012, at 11:00 a.m. EST for a live chat on how electronic manufacturers in Thailand have shored up their supply chain to reduce the impact of future natural disasters.
Peter Drucker famously said "Trying to predict the future is like trying to drive down a country road at night with no lights while looking out the back window." Yet in the razor's-edge world of electronics—with a lean supply chain and just-in-time demands—the need to know the future is vital.
While no one really can accurately predict the future, we can take guidance from another Drucker saying which is the best way to predict the future is to create it.
You've heard the saying "the No. 1 supply chain risk is your people." That hasn't always been the case. But today's complex global supply chain requires a new type of multitalented employee. It's one who understands, finance, marketing, economics, is savvy with technology, graceful with relationships and can think analytically.
Where are these people? Are universities properly preparing the next generation supply chain professionals? How do train your existing workforce for these new, demanding positions?
Brian Fuller, editor-in-chief of EBN, will lead a 60-minute Avnet Velocity panel discussion that will ask and answer these and other questions swirling around today's supply-chain talent challenges.