World Brifing

Memo to the COO: Update Your Resume

According to a new study, chief operating officers can be likened to your appendix. Not only are they unnecessary, but they can also turn into expensive problems. The study, which will appear later this year in Strategic Management Journal, concludes that companies with a CEO-COO combination substantially underperform those without a second-in-command. For boards of directors, the COO position is always a thorny issue, particularly if they have strong-willed CEOs. Researchers examined 10 years' worth of data, from 1987 through 1996, for more than 400 companies in 21 industries to yield a sample of...

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