To Terminate or Not To Terminate Yahoo’s CEO for Missing Credentials: More Rationalizations Gone Wild

Yahoo CEO, for now, Scott Thompson, earned a degree in accounting and computer science from Stonehill College in 1979. Slight problem; Stonehill College did not offer a degree in computer science until 1983. This guy was REALLY ahead of his time. A hedge fund owner wants him ousted, and the board slogs onward to investigate because as an anonymous company source put it, “Maintaining him as CEO of Yahoo at this time is more important than whether he had a computer science degree or not.” And an ethical wizard from an executive coaching firm offered this nugget, “It would be catastrophic to Yahoo if they pulled him out.”

Actually, Cato, it would be catastrophic if they leave him in his position. For the employees, there is the morale problem as well as the signals on ethics. If they would be fired for the same offense, Thompson needs to go. For the investors, well, there is already a proxy battle, and it looks like the outside forces, who are not happy with the $10 to $20 per share hover for four years after the decline of a Microsoft $33 offer, have won, and all over a misrepresented degree. Thompson has only one full quarter as CEO under his belt. The company needs credible leadership.

What the Barometer finds interesting is the thinking on the various news websites about “to terminate or not to terminate, that is the question.” Herewith, more from the minds of our fellow Catos:

Degrees are irrelevant in IT.
Computer IT degrees are way over-rated. Whether the Yahoo CEO has a copmuter IT degree or not really doesn’t matter one whit, only that he lied about it.
So what, he lied. No different than[sic] our president, on multiple occasions, almost daily. He runs a successful company. So what?
I wouldn’t worry about it Scott. Computer Science graduates are all text book [sic] bureaucracy and no common sense.
If this were me, I would be fired. He should be too. When an employee fills out a job application, right before they it it says, “I promise all above is true and
understand I can be fired if not.” Very basic . . . he is replaceable and he should be.
Maybe his actual work record is worth more than a paper qualification?
University degree. Not worth the paper they are written on.
If a doctor lies about getting a medical degree (or a lawyer a law degree) and are caught they get fired and sanctioned. This guy lies about a computer science degree and it’s OK because look at the good he’s done?!? Are y’all MAD?!?! No good ever comes out of deceit.

And the Barometer’s favorite because of all the evident effort that went into the post (this would be someone you would want a’gin ya because having them ‘fer ya might not help:
Hii proffessional accomplishment ( which isquite a bit) made him a CEO of yahoo notwirhstanding the absence hi degree in Computer science. Compuer is a tough world of competition, anf he made it !!! That’s that what matters.
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About mmjdiary

Professor Marianne Jennings is an emeritus professor of legal and ethical studies from the W.P. Carey School of Business at Arizona State University, retiring in 2011 after 35 years of teaching undergraduate and graduate courses in ethics and the legal environment of business. During her tenure at ASU, she served as director of the Joan and David Lincoln Center for Applied Ethics from 1995-1999. In 2006, she was appointed faculty director for the W.P. Carey Executive MBA Program. She has done consulting work for businesses and professional groups including AICPA, Boeing, Dial Corporation, Edward Jones, Mattel, Motorola, CFA Institute, Southern California Edison, the Institute of Internal Auditors, AIMR, DuPont, AES, Blue Cross Blue Shield, Motorola, Hy-Vee Foods, IBM, Bell Helicopter, Amgen, Raytheon, and VIAD. The sixth edition of her textbook, Case Studies in Business Ethics, was published in February 2011. The ninth edition of her textbook, Business: lts Legal, Ethical and Global Environment was published in January 2011. The 23rd edition of her book, Business Law: Principles and Cases, will be published in January 2013. The tenth edition of her book, Real Estate Law, will also be published in January 2013. Her book, A Business Tale: A Story of Ethics, Choices, Success, and a Very Large Rabbit, a fable about business ethics, was chosen by Library Journal in 2004 as its business book of the year. A Business Tale was also a finalist for two other literary awards for 2004. In 2000 her book on corporate governance was published by the New York Times MBA Pocket Series. Her book on long-term success, Building a Business Through Good Times and Bad: Lessons from Fifteen Companies, Each With a Century of Dividends, was published in October 2002 and has been used by Booz, Allen, Hamilton for its work on business longevity. Her latest book, The Seven Signs of Ethical Collapse was published by St. Martin’s Press in July 2006 and has been a finalist for two book awards. Her weekly columns are syndicated around the country, and her work has appeared in the Wall Street Journal, the Chicago Tribune, the New York Times, Washington Post, and the Reader's Digest. A collection of her essays, Nobody Fixes Real Carrot Sticks Anymore, first published in 1994 is still being published. She has been a commentator on business issues on All Things Considered for National Public Radio. She has served on four boards of directors, including Arizona Public Service (1987-2000), Zealous Capital Corporation, and the Center for Children with Chronic Illness and Disability at the University of Minnesota. She was appointed to the board of advisors for the Institute of Nuclear Power Operators in 2004 and served on the board of trustees for Think Arizona, a public policy think tank. She has appeared on CNBC, CBS This Morning, the Today Show, and CBS Evening News. In 2010 she was named one of the Top 100 Thought Leaders in Business Ethics by Trust Across America. Her books have been translated into four different languages. She received the British Emerald award for authoring one of their top 50 articles in management publications, chosen from over 15,000 articles. Personal: Married since 1976 to Terry H. Jennings, Maricopa County Attorney’s Office Deputy County Attorney; five children: Sarah, Sam, and John, and the late Claire and Hannah Jennings.
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