Top Stories

What is the fastest way to get promoted at Google?

One of the best kept secrets at Google is that although the promotion process is described as being very fair, meritocratic and objective, in many cases promotion is given for reasons that are completely unrelated to performance.

What are the real reason(s) Toys R Us went bankrupt?

I do not work for and have not worked for Toy R Us but I have seen enough of this to know one truth - the reason almost all companies like this go under is bad management. It would seem that with the KKR and others buyout they would have brought an excellent management team on board but depending on how that is done it can actually be worse. Sometimes these high end teams come with an extremely high price tag. Sometimes in situations like this the top execs are retained with extremely lucrative contracts which hurts a company’s ability to get back on its feet.

Why didn't Sears adapt?

I led a small marketing team at Sears briefly in 2015. The experience was so terrible that I quit ~5 months into the role (at great financial cost) and was so depressed that I took the same amount of time off to stop hating myself for ever getting involved.

Why is GE failing?

I can echo Brad Woods’ of GE’s collapse from another industry. I retired from a large transportation company. At one point, a group of shareholders managed to force on the corporation a chairman of the board who wasn’t satisfied with the primary company’s financial performance. He thought the industry was mature which was another way of saying it had no growth potential. Instead, he viewed it as a cash cow to finance other, more modern and, in his expectation, better prospects. He bought several companies that were peripheral to the main one. They weren’t bad investments except that he paid too much for them.

What was the best "drop the mic" moment you've witnessed in a business meeting?

Many years ago, I was the tech lead on a project in Asia. (I’m going to specifically be a little vague). I was there to lead a large IT development project out of trouble and past a check point the client had set. We were already in “liquidated damages” when I arrived — we were paying the client $4,000/day because we had missed a hard deadline.

Is Amway a fraud group?

I was interested enough to go to an introductory session and ask enough questions that I was satisfied that I understod how it worked. Which is to say that if I had gone ahead with it I would have been walking in with my eyes open and I wouldn’t have been defrauded, at least in my own eyes, even if I had lost money. But I am not at all sure that the information I gleaned would have been handed out if I had not asked. It’s complex stuff with a lot of numbers.

How can you tell if someone is truly an expert in Excel?

Pretty much every resume I received as an engineering manager included a statement that the applicant was an expert in Excel. I immediately discounted such statements, because most people have no idea how much they don’t know about Excel. And if such a person came in for an interview and bragged about their Excel abilities, it only took a couple of questions to establish otherwise.

How can I make big money from little deals?

Some people risk $10 a day on lottery tickets. I spent around $10 a day to buy slivers of land, land sold for non-payment of taxes, abandoned storage containers. In my career as a wheeler dealer, I probably made thousands of little deals. If I told you how much money I made, you wouldn’t believe me. So I won’t tell. Today I will mention only one of many places I got my leads on little deals that sometimes made big money.

What is the most profitable tweet in history?

The good news: it was a pithy tweet from Elon Musk, about possibly taking Tesla private, with a thinly veiled marijuana reference (target share price was cited as being $420), netting $40 million in a matter of months.

What's the naughtiest experience you've had at a company party?

Ive had a few actually, but one time especially springs to mind, which would have been hugely embarrassing and humiliating if work colleagues had found out each time, but luckily no one did. And it involved large quantities of alcohol being consumed…

© Voyager Vault·Home·Privacy·Not Found