No one said Marissa Mayer’s journey into Yahoo would be easy, but there have been some controversial moves made by tech maven. A lot of articles are taking shots at Mayer left and right, but I believe that there’s a method to the madness. She is going for long-term survival. Here’s what small business can glean from this year of leadership challenges.
Who you fire matters
Everyone is buzzing over the firing of Yahoo COO, Henrique de Castro, but what Mayer’s is forgetting to focus on is the repercussion of that firing. I believe that she tried to avoid the end of that relationship with everything in her power, but what she didn’t do was consider the end in the beginning. As a CEO when you hire executive leadership, you have to look at ways to untie the relationship without breaking the company. The loss of the COO echoes down the chain and that instability makes a turnaround much harder.
Be clear about strategy
Mayer’s strategy for the future of Yahoo is still unclear almost 2 years later. Yahoo is struggling to reach their customers and how she plans to remedy that is what will solidify her reputation as turnaround dynamo. What we can take away as small business owners is that a clear strategy is a successful one. Stop changing your mind and stop weighing your options. Be clear about your intention, make a decision and keep moving towards that target.
Take the high road
A blog post today spoke about the loss of passwords and logins for email account holders. Twice in two months Yahoo has had to deal with issues for its email. The response issued by Yahoo indicated that the fault lied with a third party vendor. My issue with this statement is that, ultimately Yahoo (Mrs. Mayer) is responsible for what is given to their company. As a small business own your mistakes, take your medicine and fix your challenge. Your customers want solutions, not blame.
Mayer has a huge challenge, but as a small business you face the same issues. Business is business, whether large or small and being introspective is the key to a successful effort. Take these lessons and go build your empire!