“I am very sad to tell you that I’ve just been fired over the phone by Yahoo’s chairman of the board. It has been my pleasure to work with all of you and I wish you only the best going forward,” Carol Bartz wrote to Yahoo staff on Tuesday night to inform them of her sudden departure as chief executive.
While Bartz’s contract still had 16 months left to run, which suggests she will leave with generous severance pay, her exit has not come as a surprise to Silicon Valley insiders.
Last week I interviewed Indra Nooyi of PepsiCo – the most consistently highly ranked woman chief executive on the planet. We talked about the impact of her paternal grandfather: his expectation that his grandchildren would achieve exceptional results, and the imperative of working as hard as necessary to do an outstanding job.