Profane as ever, fired Yahoo chief executive Carol Bartz lays bare her nasty departure from the company in her first interview since leaving.
Jay GreeneFormer Staff Writer
Jay Greene, a CNET senior writer, works from Seattle and focuses on investigations and analysis. He's a former Seattle bureau chief for BusinessWeek and author of the book "Design Is How It Works: How the Smartest Companies Turn Products into Icons" (Penguin/Portfolio).
Yahoo didn't respond to a request to reply to Bartz's comments.
Bartz told the magazine that she called Yahoo Chairman Roy Bostock at 6:06 p.m. ET on Tuesday for a previously scheduled conversation. When they connected, Bartz said that Bostock read from what sounded like a legal document. In her typical blunt way, Bartz called Bostock out.
"Why don't you have the balls to tell me yourself?" Bartz recalls telling Bostock. At the end of his reading of the document, Bartz told her one-time board colleague, "I thought you were classier."
In the interview, Bartz lays bare the dilemma confounding Yahoo's board. The company is facing enormous pressure to boost revenue, particularly after having rejected Microsoft's $44.6 billion bid for the company in 2008, the year before she joined Yahoo.
"The board was so spooked by being cast as the worst board in the country," Bartz says. "Now they're trying to show that they're not the doofuses that they are."
According to Bartz, Bostock gave her two hours to resign or get fired. That's when she tapped her brief e-mail to employees, saying, in part, "I am very sad to tell you that I've just been fired over the phone by Yahoo's chairman of the board."