This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here
Stocks Under $10 with 50-100% upside potential - 14 days FREE!

Watch Microsoft Hire an Enabler as CEO

They're similar because there's lots going right with the business.

Where Yahoo! has always had traffic and an ubiquitous presence, Microsoft still dominates consumer and enterprise spaces with a massive Windows/Office installed base. Albeit for different reasons, Yahoo! has been able to rely on a strong cash position and pretty solid balance sheet. Microsoft is even stronger in that regard.

But Yahoo!'s board and CEO search committee realized it had to kick the heroin habit. It could no longer uncritically consider all of the above as things it had going for it; rather, it had to go to another extreme, treating these positives as having overstayed their welcome. If the company didn't move aggressively to change its culture and shift strategy, it would, at some point, devolve into irrelevancy.

That's, for all intents and purposes, where Microsoft finds itself.

And, if you consider the candidates up for the gig and observe the concern that one got away, you have to believe it's set to hire an enabler CEO. Somebody who will facilitate the status quo with empty talk of change, managing business as usual and overseeing the downfall. 

If you don't think this qualifies as a "loser" strategy to hire a "loser" CEO (in the most loving and street slang sense of the term), you're wearing the same brand of blinders Blackberry (BBRY) faithful had on before that company's all-out collapse.

Cash. Installed bases. Reputation. Traffic. Tech that you consider impossible for enterprise (and some consumers) to unwind. These are not signs of a healthy business when they're pretty much all you have to hang your hat on. (I say "pretty much" because Xbox is an incredible franchise, that, sadly, Microsoft fails to take full advantage of).

That last one -- Tech that you consider impossible for enterprise (and some consumers) to unwind. Though I don't know her, I presume that's something that would make Marissa Mayer physically sick. The notion that you somehow weaseled your way into the life of your users and, like a mooching boyfriend, you can make it hard for these users to extricate themselves from a less-than-ideal situation.

That was basically what Blackberry hung on to ("security" was their security blanket) as it refused to hire a flame throwing CEO and incite meaningful change. Now Microsoft appears set to do the same. And some readers take exception to the focus on the CEO search as pivotal, of paramount importance and, as it stands, the stuff losers are made off.

But, remember, what you read in the comments section of a financial media article does not represent consensus. Others do exist who get what I'm saying loud and clear:


I'm not holding my breath that Microsoft will.

--Written by Rocco Pendola on an airplane somewhere over the Northeast over the weekend leaving winter weather behind en route to LA!

Rocco Pendola is a columnist for TheStreet. Pendola makes frequent appearances on national television networks such as CNN and CNBC as well as TheStreet TV. Whenever possible, Pendola uses hockey, Springsteen or Southern California references in his work. He lives in Santa Monica.
2 of 2

Select the service that is right for you!

COMPARE ALL SERVICES
Action Alerts PLUS
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer and Stephanie Link actively manage a real portfolio and reveal their money management tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
  • Weekly roundups
TheStreet Quant Ratings
Try it NOW
Only $49.95/yr

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
  • Upgrade/downgrade alerts
Stocks Under $10
Try it NOW

David Peltier, uncovers low dollar stocks with extraordinary upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
  • Weekly roundups
Dividend Stock Advisor
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer's protege, David Peltier, identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Alerts when market news affect the portfolio
  • Bi-weekly updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Real Money Pro
Try it NOW

All of Real Money, plus 15 more of Wall Street's sharpest minds delivering actionable trading ideas, a comprehensive look at the market, and fundamental and technical analysis.

Product Features:
  • Real Money + Doug Kass Plus 15 more Wall Street Pros
  • Intraday commentary & news
  • Ultra-actionable trading ideas
Options Profits
Try it NOW

Our options trading pros provide daily market commentary and over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • 100+ monthly options trading ideas
  • Actionable options commentary & news
  • Real-time trading community
  • Options TV
To begin commenting right away, you can log in below using your Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, OpenID or Yahoo login credentials. Alternatively, you can post a comment as a "guest" just by entering an email address. Your use of the commenting tool is subject to multiple terms of service/use and privacy policies - see here for more details.
Submit an article to us!
DOW 16,943.81 +28.74 0.17%
S&P 500 1,967.57 +2.89 0.15%
NASDAQ 4,415.49 +19.2860 0.44%

Brokerage Partners

Rates from Bankrate.com

  • Mortgage
  • Credit Cards
  • Auto
Advertising Partners

Free Newsletters from TheStreet

My Subscriptions:

After the Bell

Before the Bell

Booyah! Newsletter

Midday Bell

TheStreet Top 10 Stories

Winners & Losers

Register for Newsletters
Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs