Changing of the Guard

I am really excited about Yahoo! appointing Marissa Mayer as the new CEO.  It is exciting that they chose a woman, a geek, and had enough of an open mind to make this move while she is pregnant.  Sadly, most companies would not have given her a shot, but Yahoo! did, and I am very excited about what Marissa represents for not only Yahoo!, but for all of us Gen X and Y’ers – ready to come out from the shadow of the boomers.

So why am I excited?  Marissa represents the changing of the guard in corporate America.  She is young, stylish, and a geek.  She is tech savvy.  She is going to struggle through parenthood.  She is just like us.  That is why I am so excited – Marissa is just like all of us! (With a few more dollars in her bank account, of course).  I bet she sleeps with her iPad and smartphone – just like we do!

We have three core generations in the US.  Boomers, who have led companies for years, Gen X, a smaller generation stuck in the middle, and Gen Y or millennial, just as large as the Baby Boomers.  Even though Gen X and Y far exceed boomers in population, boomers still lead the US in influence, income, and corporate America leadership roles.  Most Fortune 500 companies are led by boomers – often who do not use the company’s product or service, and can be out of touch with the struggles of growing a career, being a new parent, and paying off student loans.  Generation X and Y are parents.  They are educated.  And they are ready to be leaders.

I wish Marissa the best of luck.  She has her work cut out for her for sure – but overall this change took a lot of courage, and I hope Yahoo! is rewarded for that vision.


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