New CEO Uses Corporate Jargon. Stock Falls.

Research in Motion Ltd. (RIM) just replaced co-CEOs Jim Balsillie and Mike Lazaridis with Thorsten Heins.  I have no idea how well Mr. Heins will do as RIMs CEO, nor have I spent any time exploring his background.

But I watched the video (below) and saw that Mr. Heins has perfected his MBA platitudes and corporate jargon.  It’s incredible that the RIM corporate communications team saw fit to put over seven full minutes of jargon on You Tube.  Some samples:

“If we continue doing well what we’re doing, I see no problems with us being in the top three players worldwide in the next years in wireless.”

Top three?

“What I’m really good at is inspiring teams.”

I don’t think this video is a barn burner.

“Just be bold, get on it and be proud of what we will achieve.”

Wow.

Takeaways.  If your new CEO isn’t a scintillating speaker, don’t put him or her on YouTube without extensive media training.  Don’t let them speak in jargon and platitudes.  Find the one key message they need to get across and spend the first month hammering that theme home.

RIM’s stock? Down almost 7% right out of the gate and the new announcement getting a lot of scorn right now.

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2 Responses to New CEO Uses Corporate Jargon. Stock Falls.

  1. Agree completely, Mark.

    All forms of communication (business, political, etc.) have taken an unfortunate turn towards meaningless jargon and feel good sound bites.

    It’s not the reason why RIM’s stock tumbled seven percent yesterday, as you infer in your headline. The downturn is a result of the new CEO’s commitment to follow through on the company’s existing strategy, which has proven to be ineffective.

    • markpilip says:

      Exactly. With the new CEO, his comments–when intelligible–seem only to promise “more of the same.”. I do imply causality in my headline (hey, got to drive those page views!) that may not exist. Or maybe it does? We know where that’s got RIM so far…

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