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Ducks in a Row: Falling Star Marissa Mayer

by Miki Saxon

https://www.flickr.com/photos/98714794@N08/15815120475/

There is nothing wrong with Marissa Mayer’s compensation.

Yahoo! Inc.’s Marissa Mayer was the country’s highest-paid female CEO. The 39-year-old was awarded $59.1 million in 2014, making her No. 3 among the eight women on the Bloomberg Pay Index…

However, there is a lot wrong with Marissa Mayer’s performance.

The problem is, as As Wally Bock succinctly said last year, “We live in a world of microwavable answers and quick fixes” — and bosses see stars as quick fixes,” and Yahoo’s board thought Mayer the star would quickly fix Yahoo.

Hiring stars is often a function of bragging rights, better known as “mine’s bigger than yours.

But in a world where where people want star status in order to brand themselves, boards and bosses would do well to remember that they don’t come with any kind of money-back guarantee — in fact, they more often come with some kind of golden buyout.

Most star performers are a product of the ecosystem in which they perform. Change the management, culture, especially culture, or any other part of that ecosystem and stars may fall.

And never forget that that ecosystem is permeated by that insidious little detail that impacts success and is so often ignored in discussions — the economy.

As everyone knows, Yahoo isn’t Google, so…

A rising star at Google has become a falling star at Yahoo.

And a lesson learned for thinking bosses at any level, especially those responsible for hiring  executive and strategic talent — the past is no guarantee of the future.

Flickr image credit: Tim Spouge

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