Yahoo CEO Bartz Shakes Up Management - InformationWeek

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2/26/2009
04:14 PM
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Yahoo CEO Bartz Shakes Up Management

While Yahoo's CFO and mobile czar pack their bags, the executive's first blog indicates a new focus on improving relations with customers and advertisers.

Yahoo's reorganization is under way as the company on Thursday announced the change through new CEO Carol Bartz's first blog post.

"I'm rolling out a new management structure that I believe will make Yahoo a lot faster on its feet," Bartz explained in the blog. "For us working at Yahoo, it means everything gets simpler. We'll be able to make speedier decisions, the notorious silos are gone, and we have a renewed focus on the customer. For you using Yahoo every day, it will better enable us to deliver products that make you say, 'Wow.' "

Bartz said that she would create a customer advocacy group to improve customer and advertiser support. Bartz said the Customer Care team does a good job but needs better resources. It's unclear where that team fits into the reorganization, and the company has not named anyone to lead the new customer advocacy group.

True to her reputation for speaking plainly, Bartz said that it's not clear to everyone what Yahoo stands for even though its brand is one of its biggest assets, and she plans to change that. "Look for this company's brand to kick a-- again," she said.

Finally, Bartz said that she plans to continue blogging, "though probably not soon. I have a pretty long to-do list."

That list includes finding a replacement for CFO Blake Jorgensen, whose departure was revealed in a regulatory filing after he indicated this week that the company may be open to selling or outsourcing its search operations.

Marco Boerries, leader of the company's mobile services, also sent out a memo saying he is leaving for personal reasons. Neeraj Khemlani, who leads Yahoo's news group, is also leaving to become a VP at Hearst.

CTO Ari Balogh will lead a new group that combines the company's global products and technology operations. Hilary Schneider will lead a North American arm for product delivery, and David Ko will lead the marketing group under Schneider. Yahoo plans to appoint a second leader for an international products and technology.

Elisa Steele, senior VP of corporate marketing for Network Appliance, will become Yahoo's chief marketing officer. David Dibble will lead service engineering and operations, reporting to Bartz. Ash Patel will head up project architecture. Joel Jones, VP of corporate strategy, will become Bartz's chief of staff.

Bartz said that the company is full of intelligent, talented, and dedicated people, but it has also been complicated and bogged down.


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