Morning Coffee Sep 22 2011

The Times Are A-Changin' at H-P

By joseph walker

UPDATE: Meg Whitman Has Been Named H-P CEO

Leo Apotheker's reign as CEO of Hewlett-Packard Co. could be very short-lived. The company's board of directors met yesterday to discuss dumping the man it brought on just last November to replace the last CEO it fired, Mark Hurd. Former eBay CEO and failed California gubernatorial candidate Meg Whitman is considered the front-runner to replace him -- though some have doubts about the wisdom of that choice.

Apotheker's seemingly schizophrenic strategy to turn H-P around has shaken investor confidence in the 70-year-old company. When he first came on, he raised the company's earnings forecast, only to lower it in every subsequent quarter. Initially, he was a fan of the company's PC and tablet prospects; then last month he said the company would dump those parts of the business and concentrate on providing software and cloud solutions to enterprise customers. To top it all off, Apotheker said he'd purchase U.K. software firm Autonomy for $10.2 billion, a price that analysts said was much too high.

The stock plunged to a low of $22.47 this month from $42.07 the day his hiring was announced in September 2010.

But H-P isn't alone in its struggles. Amid the frenzy over technology stocks and start-ups, it's easy to overlook that a number of high-profile companies are fighting to remain relevant. When turmoil hits, whoever is at the helm is at risk, as the leaders of Cisco and Research In Motion, who have faced calls to step down, know all too well.

Speed -- the prospect of an idea or start-up becoming a billion dollar company virtually overnight -- is what makes the technology sector so exciting. But it's also what makes it terrifying in terms of job security. (WSJ)

UTC to Buy Goodrich (Reuters)

United Technologies Corp., the aerospace conglomerate, plans to buy Goodrich Corp., a smaller airplane component maker, for $16.4 billion. If the deal is approved by regulators, it would be UTC's biggest-ever acquisition.

Staying Put (FINS)

In theory, everyone wants to advance in their career. But sometimes promotions aren't all they're cracked up to be.

What Would You Do?

Answer the question and see how you match up with the rest of the FINS community.

You've just been offered your dream job, but... no one in your new group has been promoted in four years.


Schmidt Defends Google (WSJ)

Former CEO and current executive chairman Erich Schmidt sat before a Congressional committee yesterday to defend Google against charges that it is using its dominance in search to steer consumers to its own products and services at the expense of competitors.

Microsoft Helps Lure Indian Co. to Washington (Seattle Times)

HCL Technologies, an Indian software maker, says it will hire at least 360 engineers and business managers for its new facility in Redmond, Wa. HCL's customers include Microsoft and Boeing.

Jobs in the Heart of Georgia (Atlanta Journal-Constitution)

Mando, a South Korean auto parts supplier, is opening a high-tech manufacturing plant in Meriwether County, Georgia. Initially, the company will have 200 employees, and plans to expand to 426. The company qualifies for $24 million in tax breaks.

New VP at Nokia (TechCrunch)

Finnish phone maker Nokia has appointed Henry Tirri as its new chief technology officer and executive vice president. Tirri was most recently head of the company's research center, and will be based in Silicon Valley.

Up Is Down (San Jose Mercury News)

Silcon Valley's tech-centric professional and business services sector added 1,900 jobs this July, a month that typically sees losses.

How Not to Recruit (WePayBlog)

If you want to find the right job, you've also got to find the right recruiter. Head hunters who just pass along every resume that crosses their desk don't get much respect from hiring managers. Here's what not to do.

Incompetence, Not Malice (WSJ)

A lawyer for Full Tilt Poker, the gambling web site being sued by the U.S. government, says the company may have been mismanaged, but was not a Ponzi Scheme.

Buzz Around the Office

How to Get Fired (YouTube)

Wouldn't it be fun to sing a song about how much you hate your company, then put it on YouTube and have it go viral? Yeah, of course, and then you're fired -- like this guy. (Warning: sNSFW)

List of the Day: Five Reasons Your LinkedIn Profile Isn't Working

LinkedIn helps make networking and applying for jobs easier to manage. But it doesn't work on autopilot. Here are the main pitfalls to avoid:

1. You forgot to apply the principles of SEO.

2. Your profile text looks like a dry bio.

3. You gave away the store.


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