Year End Management Changes

Trumpjpg Last December I wrote a post about how December is the time of year when a lot of startup Boards decide to make management (read CEO) changes.  I was reminded of this as I was reading a TechCrunch article about how Dan Nye is out as CEO of LinkedIN.

In this case the founding CEO Reid Hoffman is back as CEO (he had previously been kicked upstairs to Chairman).  This is reminiscent of Yahoo bringing Jerry Yang back to be CEO (in that case they did it knowing that a potential sale was on the horizon).  I wonder if LinkedIN is thinking the same thing?  Or perhaps they’re just kicking the ball down the field to see if another, more capable CEO candidate frees up next year as companies wind down and merge.  Despite how high the bar is for M&A today, I think there is still a market for companies like LinkedIN (that generate cash) and there remain buyers on the sidelines with cash (like Microsoft and their $37 billion).

If you find yourself facing a similar situation, take heart.  It’s been almost 2 years since I walked out the door of my first founder/CEO gig and I have to say that “things appear a lot smaller in the rear view mirror” than they do in front of you.