The more things change, the more... you know what we're trying to say. Just last week, longtime AT&T guru and then interim General Motors CEO Ed Whitacre was able to ditch that pesky 'interim' modifier and became the king of the hill at GM. Of course, that was last week. This week we're getting reports that Ed Whitacre (who, curiously enough, was the president of the Boy Scouts of America from 1998-2000) will be out of the RenCen in two to three years.
Why? Well, Whitacre was born in 1941, so he'll be into his seventies by then and ready to move to his cattle ranch in Montana (or wherever it is multi-millionaire alpha males go to retire). Also, the General Motors board only named him the permanent CEO when a search for someone to step in and take the job from Whitacre came up fruitless. The search yielded no one qualified that was willing to work for the pay restrictions put in place by Uncle Sam as a result of GM's Chapter 11 bailout.
Also, and you need to read between the lines for this one, Detroit for the most part dislikes and distrusts outsiders. Hence the fact that they are looking internally for a Whitacre replacement. Strange when you consider how much wood former Boeing-man and total Detroit outsider Alan Mulally's been chopping over at surging Ford. Still, "Whitacre and the board want the winning candidate to emerge from a new corporate culture based on decision-making and accountability." Well, if that's all it takes...
[Source: Automotive News - Sub. Req. | Image Source: Bill Pugliano/Getty Images]