The Ceo As Hero And Bum

Chief executives are getting fired all across Corporate America. Some CEOs are not making the transition from Old to New Economy. Others are trying to pass off sclerotic food or washing machine companies as fast growth engines. And many high-tech CEOs are zigging when they should be zagging with new technologies. A record 350 American CEOs left their corner offices in the past three months. Those who manage to hang on can expect a job tenure half of what it was in the '80s. Wall Street believes that in an era of higher productivity and faster economic growth, double-digit earnings increases every quarter are the norm, and heaven help any chief executive who can't meet that target. The message is: Heck, if Jack Welch can do it, you can do it too.

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