Posted Tuesday, June 2, 2015 9:36 AM | Contributed by Jeff
Walt Disney Co. Chief Financial Officer Jay Rasulo, who earlier this year was passed over for the Burbank company's No. 2 job, will step down from his post at the end of the month. Rasulo's impending departure is the latest change in the executive ranks of the entertainment giant. The moves have been triggered by Disney's elevation of Thomas Staggs — the former head of the company's parks and resorts division — to the chief operating officer role in February.
Read more from The LA Times.
Saw this coming, shouldn't have been a surprise to anyone in the business.
No surprise. While I'm no expert, I'm glad that Staggs got the nod as heir apparent to Iger. He seems to have the necessary passion and personality for the job, and hardly anyone has anything bad to say about the guy. I wasn't ever a huge fan of Rasulo because I feel WDW really started to go downhill on his watch, but I suppose he could have been a victim of the remains of Eisner's last decade. At least he seems young enough to establish himself elsewhere, likely as CEO. He has the resume.
A few months ago I was able to attend a talk with Wes McKeown (Predictable Success, among others), who said that you can generally categorize people in leadership positions into operators and visionaries. Startups are notorious for having visionaries who suck at operating the company, while big dumb companies often have operators who have no vision. In many companies, you see CEO's who lean toward visionary, and COO's who lean toward operator. This is a pretty good arrangement, because it means the tone and direction is set by someone thinking big, while the second in command executes on that direction. Staggs seems to lean toward visionary, if I'm to believe what has been written about him.
That pretty much sums up the impression I get from everything I read about Staggs. And if that's the case, good for Disney for not putting a bean counter in the top spot (although we'll see if Staggs actually succeeds Iger- no one wants the guy to leave, and I have a feeling that if he signs another long contract extension, Staggs might entertain other offers).
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