Yahoo CEO’s Popularity Slips After One Year, Survey Shows

Yahoo! Inc. Chief Executive Officer Marissa Mayer’s popularity among employees of the largest U.S. Internet portal has slipped since she took the reins one year ago, according to research by Glassdoor Inc.

Eighty-four percent of Yahoo staff approved of Mayer’s leadership in the second quarter of this year, down from 91 percent in the third quarter of 2012, her first three-month period as CEO, according to data distributed today by the job hunting site. Glassdoor collected data from 179 anonymous reviews posted on its site by staff working for the Sunnyvale, California-based company.

Mayer has worked to improve employee morale as part of her effort to build new applications and services that lure users and advertisers lost to Google Inc. and Facebook Inc. While perks such as free food and extended leave for new parents may have helped her achieve an average approval rating of 85 percent over the past three quarters, the dip in her rating since last year suggests enthusiasm generated by Mayer’s hiring has cooled.

Reviews critical of Mayer’s leadership included a complaint about the hiring approval process -- which now takes an average of 22 days, up from eight days in the year prior to her arrival at the company, according to Glassdoor.

One Glassdoor user, identifying themselves as an operations business manager at the company, also complained about Mayer’s directive in February which asked all employees working from home to begin reporting to offices.

Less Popular

In the second quarter, Mayer was less popular with her employees than rival CEOs including Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg, with a 90 percent approval; Google’s Larry Page, with 98 percent approval; and LinkedIn Corp.’s Jeff Weiner, with 89 percent approval.

Ross Levinsohn, Yahoo’s interim CEO who preceded Mayer’s hiring, had the highest cumulative approval rating at the company after Mayer, with 76 percent, since Glassdoor began collecting the data. Scott Thompson, CEO before Levinsohn, had a 48 percent rating, while his predecessors Timothy Morse and Carol Bartz had ratings of 42 percent and 54 percent respectively.

Employee satisfaction at Yahoo is higher than during the tenures of Thompson and Bartz, Glassdoor’s data showed. The approval ratings of those CEOs also declined after their hiring.

Sara Gorman, a spokeswoman for Yahoo, did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

All Glassdoor’s data is based on individual postings on its site by staff at Yahoo and other companies tracked by the job-seekers’ website.

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