HP’s board can’t catch a break these days. Now it’s Jack Welch getting in on the action, terming the Hewlett-Packard board “dysfunctional” for the way it handled Mark Hurd’s ouster and for not turning to internal candidates for the top .
Leo Apotheker, a former SAP CEO, was tapped as HP’s latest CEO last week. That makes him the third HP CEO in a row to come from outside the hallowed halls of the company. The last two, Carly Fiorina and Mark Hurd, left under less-than-graceful circumstances.
The board was also broadly slammed a few years ago for its handling of a “pretexting” scheme conducted to find and plug leaks to the media.
One wag noted recently that board member Marc Andreeseen probably thought bringing Apotheker into HP was the best synergy he’d seen since the AOL-Netscape merger. We all know how well that turned out.
Bringing Ray Lane, former Oracle president and current VC power with Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, in as chairman might assuage some concerns about the board’s credibility. Or not.