CEO pens another missive as Yahoos ponder 'Resumegate'
Another day, another apology from Scott Thompson to the troops, as Third Point turns up the pressure on Yahoo's board.
Charles CooperFormer Executive Editor / News
Charles Cooper was an executive editor at CNET News. He has covered technology and business for more than 25 years, working at CBSNews.com, the Associated Press, Computer & Software News, Computer Shopper, PC Week, and ZDNet.
Just as the weekend got under way, Yahoo CEO Scott Thompson sent a note to the troops imploring them to "stay focused," according to a memo. Now he's back with another missive, urging them to stay really focused.
"I want you to know how deeply I regret how this issue has affected the company and all of you," Thompson writes, referring to the disclosure last week that he had inaccurately claimed to have a computer science degree. "We have all been working very hard to move the company forward, and this has had the opposite effect. For that, I take full responsibility, and I want to apologize to you."
At this point, it's hard to gauge how the touchy-feely stuff is going. Yahoo's a large company but anecdotal evidence suggests Thompson has a tough sell.
"We talked a little bit about the 'Resumegate' today at lunch, and the reaction first was that we are all surprised to learn that the recruitment standards we all had to go through are not applied to the CEO," says a CNET informer. "Yahoo is strictly checking everyone's resume, calling former employers to ensure that we had the job, and were given the tasks we said we were doing on our resumes, as well as asking for copies of our diplomas. This is the main issue here, and this discrepancy is inexplicable, as all employees have to go through this (sometimes unpleasant) process."
A duel to the death? Not necessarily. A source familiar with Third Point's thinking says the company would not necessarily reject a so-called offer of a standstill agreement where Loeb would not demand Thompson's resignation if Yahoo agreed to put his slate of members on the company's board. For the moment, though, it's not a conversation the sides have yet had, according to the source.
I wanted to share some additional thoughts with you related to the disclosure of my academic credentials.
As I told you on Friday, the board is reviewing the issue and I will provide whatever they need from me. In the meantime, I want you to know how deeply I regret how this issue has affected the company and all of you. We have all been working very hard to move the company forward, and this has had the opposite effect. For that, I take full responsibility, and I want to apologize to you.
In my note Friday, I said I would be focused on continuing to do what needs to get done. That's because I feel I owe it to all of you to make sure that nothing disrupts the progress we've made in just a few short months due to all of your focus, commitment, and hard work. As you've heard me say many times, we have a tremendous business with incredible assets, and we can win by putting our customers first. The progress I shared with you in the first quarter should make clear that we intend to move fast and deliver on the potential of the business for our customers, shareholders, and all of you.
I know the board plans to conduct the review thoroughly and independently, and I respect that process. I am hopeful that this matter will be concluded promptly. But, in the meantime, we have a lot of work to do. We need to continue to act as one team to fulfill the potential of this great company and keep moving forward. You have my word that all my energy and attention will be on that mission.