Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Business Insider Blog Commentary

I just finished reading an article in Business Insider about the departure of Josh Jacobs from Yahoo! Josh is a friend, a great guy and a very competent exec. This is definitely a loss for the Big Y, but much of the user comments below the piece are simply uninformed, and typically for Business Insider, uncaring.

The reality of the situation is that Yahoo's strength is its people, not one person. There is a sizeable organization that support display advertising activities at the company. Many of the people are exceptionally talented, bright, thoughtful leaders. There's no one person who, if the company failed to retain, would result in the display advertising business coming off the rails. The law of large numbers makes this a certainty.

The law of large numbers also makes it certain, however, that some people will always be departing a big organization. But there is also new talent being brought in on a consistent basis. Unfortunately for Yahoo!, there's a massive amount of bias in the coverage that feeds an availability heuristic. We all know this, but I'd like to believe that bloggers would aspire to bring a more informed viewpoint. Silly me.

1 comment:

mikael said...

Nice Post!

I doubt the majority of readers truly believe all the half-informed, listen-to-me-I-have-the-scoop type of crap being written in articles, blogs, and especially user comments, about Yahoo! and its employees. In times of change turnover, new hiring and internal shuffling is natural and part of the recipe for getting the right people in the right roles. These adjustments don't happen overnight and are only prolonged by the company having had a changing business plan for a while, with multiple external forces only adding to the uncertainty and stretching the time line for reaching more stable ground.

It's partly funny, and I think Josh should be flattered, that people think the company is doomed without him, but his departure is a natural part of the organizations evolution and not a reflection of a sinking ship.

Lots of people on the blogs, though, seem to think this Zinman-guy is a rock star. What's that all about :)