The Blame Game

If you are a public company CEO and your company misses its numbers, what do you do?

You’ve got a choice. Tell the truth and risk losing your job or you blame something, anything, other than yourself. The latter choice is all too often the choice that bad public company CEOs make.

We saw this at work yesterday when Bill Park, CEO of Digital Impact, (DIGI) talked about their weak third quarter. He said:

“Our growth has been slowed by external factors, including a pullback in marketing budgets by some of our technology clients and the slow adoption of e-mail by enterprise marketers as a result of spam”

Well that’s just a crock of you know what. Spam concerns and lower marketing budgets aren’t hurting anyone else in the email industry that I know of. We have two portfolio companies in the email business. And I know of a number of other email companies that are having banner years.

Bill’s problem is that other companies are taking his customers. Blaming spam and lower “marketing budgets” hurts the industry and won’t help Bill out in the long run. Fixing what’s wrong with his company is the only answer to his problems.