Smart Enemies And Dumb Friends

From Zoho Blogs:

… dump the friend and embrace the enemy.

Several years ago, we had many rounds of meetings with Yahoo on ways to cooperate. It was very clear that Yahoo had lousy leadership. On the other hand, I was quite impressed by the Google leadership I met.

What did we end up doing at Zoho? We never pursued a Yahoo partnership, and we made our peace with Google. Yahoo just demonstrated, yet again, that we made a wise choice. Dumb friends are more dangerous than smart enemies.

This general point is worth thinking about, even in it’s milder forms!

This is the background to the above:

Yahoo is still one of the largest consumer internet companies, and one of the most recognizable technology brands in the world. But it’s also arguably one of the most troubled publicly-traded technology companies in the world.

In January 2009, the company hired Carol Bartz as CEO to change that. Bartz had previously led software maker Autodesk, and her successes there provided some hope to Yahoo and its shareholders that the company could be turned around.

But little more than two years later, Yahoo’s board decided that progress, if any, hasn’t been great enough, and yesterday fired Bartz.

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