Why a new CEO from outside of the company means greater job security for a CPO by Jon Hansen

Posted on June 27, 2014


My father used to say be careful for what you wish as it may actually come true.

It was one of those sayings that took on greater meaning with both age and experience.

Well for many years now, procurement professionals have clearly wanted a seat at the executive table.  While we are still a long ways from the point of saturation that sees a CPO in every boardroom, for those who have made it, they are now being introduced to a harsh reality.  The reality to which I am referring can be best summed up by the old axiom that states; “the higher you get in the company, the closer you get to the exit door.”

Nowhere was this immutable truth better demonstrated than in the ominously titled article by Sarah Green “Who New CEOs Fire First.”  Are you starting to get the warm and fuzzies yet?

According to Green, and more specifically her reference to an RHR International graph, a new CEO from within the company is more than twice as likely to fire the present individual in charge of logistics and the global supply chain, than a new CEO coming in from outside of the company.

HBR CEO Fires First

What does this tell you?

Well for one thing, we in the procurement world are finally on the same level as the CFO and CIO meaning that in today’s dynamic yet volatile global marketplace, our heads are as likely roll as any other senior executives.

Welcome to the big leagues.


Posted in: Commentary