Mark Gritter (markgritter) wrote,
Mark Gritter
markgritter

Title Inflation (or: Silicon Valley Drama)

Oracle hired ex-HP-head Mark Hurd to be president of the company. This is not too surprising given that Ellison and Hurd are reported to be friends, and Ellison has publicly slammed Hurd's firing. Also, Hurd will bring some systems/hardware expertise on board, which Oracle lacks (having fired nearly the entire senior management team from Sun--- Jon Fowler being a notable exception.)

However, his role is "co-president", replacing one of two already existing co-presidents (Charles Philips and Safra Catz.) I find this bizarre.

Oracle has a well-defined head in Ellison. Does his ego not permit having only one president? Or are we to believe that Hurd would not come in as an EVP instead? How does the decision get made to have two "president"s in the company? This would make much more sense if they had clearly defined roles, but that doesn't seem to be the case.

I fear that this is the start of a trend in which upper management will receive increasingly bogus "promotions" to meaningless titles. (Not that EVP/SVP are necessarily meaningful anyway.) Are there any other big examples of this sort of arrangement?
Tags: news, oracle, rant
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