The New Big Blue

from the aiming-to-take-back-the-mountain dept

It’s fairly customary for the business trade publications to take a look at a new big company CEO one year into his or her new job. Usually these profiles make it sound as though the CEO is still getting adjusted and figuring out how to make their imprint (for example, there wasn’t much to say about Terry Semel’s first year). However, now that Sam Palmisano has been in control of IBM for a year, Business Week’s profile shows how he’s made massive changes – and is, in some ways, the anti-Gerstner. Palmisano isn’t just trying to pick up from where Gerstner left off (and everyone seems to agree that Gerstner turned around and saved a flailing company). Instead, he’s aiming to bring back the old days where IBM dominated computing. He’s also working on changing the more recent IBM culture – focusing more on teamwork, and less on the idea of the “celebrity CEO”. He’s making a huge bet with IBM’s grid computing initiative – something he had the company put together in 90 days, and which is now central to the company’s strategy going forward. On the whole, it’s a pretty glowing bit of press, but it still remains to be seen how successful his strategy will be.

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