Hopeless CEOs Who Doomed Their Companies


Every time you make the hard, correct decision you become a bit more courageous, and every time you make the easy, wrong decision you become a bit more cowardly. If you are CEO, these choices will lead to a courageous or cowardly company. – Ben Horowitz


Let’s open the pages of our CEOpedia! As per business dictionary, CEO is the Main linked person between the Board of Director and the lower level of the company. He/she implements the corporate policy of the board.

You can point out him/her as the decision maker of the particular company. So CEO is the sole responsible person for company’s success or failure.

Of late, the crisis in global entrepreneurial consortium over the lack of leadership quality of CEOs is becoming media news item for evaluation.

CEOs are leaving jobs like flies and critters. They are told not to visit the office next day because of their inefficiency to make decisions. They have doomed companies and brought financial crunch to the management.

Why does it cause the dramatic change in the process of selecting new executive and high officials urgently?

Maybe, companies need much bolder CEOs who have innovative leadership quality with the remarkable logistic aptitude to cross verify the situation of the commercial organizations before reshuffling the management or board of directors.


Old Leadership Concepts Must Be Changed


Earlier, a CEO of a small or big size organization was supposed to be an ocean liner or a fighter plane to operate. He is the pilot to control the aircraft. He must be powerful to sack any employee on demand. This type of autocratic leadership was valued by the management of the company to have peace inside the factory.

However, the modernized industry needs a switchover. New CEO must be a rider of a canoe with the cluster of rows to handle. He is the head of the company but he must not decelerate the demand of the employees.

He has to assess and analyze the reports given by subordinate officers. This power decentralization has created a gap hiatus.

Senior CEOs have old conventionalities and they show bossiness with terrific dominance over the employees.

Workers’ federations, labor unions, and employees’ guild must ask for the replacement of stubborn managers and CEOs who don’t care at the time of treating workers harshly. This transformation in the entrepreneurial skill prevents many qualified CEOs from joining the offices.


 CEOs Who Endanger Their Companies


If you are an internet frequenter with the passion to navigate online, you will see a list of discarded CEOs who have failed to work to the entire satisfaction of the board of directors.

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In 1990, CEOs didn’t lose jobs so easily. They were superiors to manipulate the team of workers.

They maintained their position with least hassle. Companies hired these talented CEOs to run organizations confidently.

However, due to the revolution in the system of trading, more educated HRs, trained employees including computer operators, programmers, and software engineers are absorbed.

They have the education to express rights. Besides, different changes in the company’s laws and employees hiring process, at present, it is difficult for a high official to take the decision without consulting with other staff members.

So, the autocracy during 1980 and 90s seems to go backdoor bringing a new format with the glossy setting for selecting more polite leaders to tackle companies with adroitness.

Well, till now, CEOs superseding process seems to be faster.


CEOs Who Failed to Save Companies

  • Travis Kalanick
  • Elizabeth Holmes
  • Jack Dorsey
  • Stephen Elop, CEO of Nokia
  • Volkswagen CEO –Matthias Muller


Travis Kalanick – Uber

Travis Kalanick of Uber CEO was dropped as he was not able to upgrade the company.

He didn’t solve many issues regarding labor problem, and management regulation. During his regime, Uber had to suffer from loss of million dollars.

Add salt to insult, Travis was blamed for molesting a female employee soiling face of the board of directors of Uber.


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Dara Khosrowshahi, an Iranian cum American CEO, has been shortlisted to occupy the same position of Travis.

Earlier he served in Expedia. Well, after his arrival, Uber automobile engineering company has had received another severe brunt.

Travis Kalanick appointed Xerox CEO Ursula Burns and John Thain, former Merrill Lynch CEO without updating Dara. New CEO is frustrated after receiving the reports over the absorption of these two members to hold the offices of Uber.

Kalanick didn’t talk to the CEO in advance. He destructed the profile and prestige of someone who is responsible to spearhead this automobile company.


Elizabeth Holmes – Theranos

A published report forced Walgreens to take steps to cut the relation with Theranos which supplies blood testing toolkits.

This company was given so-cause notices by the court about the quality of blood testing.

Theranos management loses trust and goodwill. At that time, Elizabeth Holmes was the active CEO to organize the company. She is brave but she has no accuracy in finding the truth. She didn’t submit her resignation after the massive downfall.

The jury called her and served the notice to punish this irresponsible executive. She can’t deny her failure. She never investigated to track the loopholes which must be refurbished.


Pic Courtesy : trbimg.com

She was directed not to test blood or send any representative to clinics or pharmacies with the blood testing toolkits for the next 2 years. Certainly, she was severely lambasted owing to her apathy towards patients.

However, amazingly, Theranos didn’t dismiss this maverick lady for her glossy academic career. She should have been advised to upgrade her entrepreneurial expertise.

It is the much mysterious story to reveal. The company had to trim overlays cutting employees.

Elizabeth ruined Theranos.


Jack Dorsey – Twitter

Jack Dorsey is a controversial CEO who was resurrected to negotiate with the management of Twitter.

Jack Dorsey is not capable of managing problems to escalate Twitter. This social media company has rainy days. Its competitor is Facebook which is spinning fast to have subscribers and investors to expand the business.

Twitter has not yet created a solid platform to make online chatting spicy.


Pic Courtesy : licdn.com/

Secondly, Twitter has poor management.

A number of qualified employees like Biz Stone were kicked outside the company. Jack Dorsey is not fitted to Twitter due to his ill-temper and whimsical attitude. He was found arguing on simple facts. He didn’t take care of employees who needed assistance to end up the trouble.

The communication with employees was not smooth. In 2008, he got the offer to retain the position as a passive chairman passing the buck to Williams. He never expressed desires to come to a compromise in handling crisis.

He opened a new mobile payment clearance company possessing prestigious post. He was CEO in this new company.

In-between, he used trickeries, diplomacy, and tactics to influence Twitter employees. His whispering expedition became effective to open the highway to enter into Twitter once again as a CEO.

His junior’s members complain that he is not responsible. He is not regular to join offices on time. His aggressive movement and harshness to behave must not be enjoyable. His return to Twitter was not a success as Twitter started making a deep nosedive with the irreparable loss.

Finally, again Twitter rechecked the status of his performance before suspending him. His co-founder and other employees asked the management to train him.

In short, Jack Dorsey didn’t reshape the dream of the company. He has no growth-oriented plans to boost up the administration of Twitter.

The innovation in Twitter is stopped because of the callous maneuver of this good-for-nothing CEO.


Stephen Elop – Nokia

Though Stephen Elop has the futuristic pilot projects to bring innovation in the window phones, Microsoft is unbeaten in this area.

N9 and 950 models launched by Nokia can cope with any smartphone. However, Stephen has ignored these two glossy models. Therefore, the chance of survival of Nokia in smartphone upgrading industry is comparatively tougher.

The sales of these two models increase but Elop is not interested to boost up the business. His plans are defective and worthless.



Pic courtesy:  bgr.com

According to many employees of Nokia, the company under his tenure will be crushed and smashed due to the loss of fund. He doesn’t sit for table work and he is whimsical.

At the age of iPhone X, Symbian products will be withdrawn giving more space to Windows-based handsets. It will destroy the company. He must not endanger the condition of Nokia. There is corruption in his management. He has had to take the decision to cut the number of employees to reset the financial budget. It will be more destructive to Nokia.


Matthias Müller – Volkswagen

Elon Musk of Tesla car making company has been criticized by Matthias Muller. Matthias is the CEO of Volkswagen, the top vehicle manufacturing company.


Pic courtesy : carmagazine.co.uk

The bitter criticism is not hygienic for Muller to stay cool with the stable position. He is fast losing support. Volkswagen has not forgotten humiliation and cross-examination for its involvement with carbon emission scandal.

This company sold defective carbon measurement fixtures and in-car tools which were not workable. These vehicles release huge volume of lethal carbon. Billion dollars were charged for violating laws and life risk hazards.

After becoming CEO, Muller promised fast redressal and management resetting to normalize the situation. However, he is not able to keep his words.


Moreover, he has crossed his boundary by creating chaos by doing the useless comparison. He defies Tesla for low margin in profit making. Tesla sold 80000 vehicles within a year. Volkswagen shipped a million vehicles to different cities. He can’t pollute the ambiance by lambasting CEO of Tesla.

He has not solved problems regarding workers rehab, and his own management. He has damaged goodwill of the company.

The Final Word

Top CEOs must not be out of the stream. They have to grow much efficient with eagerness to emulate new strategies to restore the weak company from nemesis.

CEOs are the prime responsible for company’s output. They have to give many sole verdict to avoid some difficult circumstances. But every CEO needs some significant working characteristics to be a successful one. Such as:

  • They have to understand the suppressed repercussion inside the factory.
  • These CEOs must study to be accustomed to the digital environment which needs better manpower with razor-sharp technical skill.
  • They should not be a gambler to destruct the company.
  • They must be more professional with determination to speed up the development of the organizations dynamically.
  • They must treat subordinates with empathy, helping them for higher job satisfaction and better work-life balance.

Every human being is the fan of the successful one. So, as a positive approach we will follow the victorious person rather than a CEO who doomed the company. The above list is only for informative purpose and we should take proper steps from their mistakes.


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