Poor Marissa Mayer, she’s the 5th person, this year alone, to try and helm the sinking ship that is Yahoo, I hope she’s ready for the challenge!
Massive layoffs and constant stream of competition await Yahoo’s new CEO.
Marissa did an excellent job managing the public image of Google’s search innovations, and in the 13 years at Google she made a name for herself as both an innovator and leader.
In terms of awards, and accolades, Marissa is a very successful woman in business, making Fortune magazine’s yearly list of America’s 50 Most Powerful Women in Business for 4 years in a row from 2008-2011.
That level of success wasn’t entirely recognized within Google, and after recently getting passed up for the role of senior VP of Google Local and Commerce, Marissa started taking on roles outside the company, notably landing a seat on the Wal-Mart board of directors in April of this year.
Even with all that behind her, taking on the role of CEO for Yahoo is a huge undertaking, not just because they are in the midst of laying off thousands of employees, but also because the company seems to be failing to match the offerings of it’s countless and ever growing list of competitors.
To top things off, last night Mrs.Mayer announced on her twitter feed that she is expecting a baby boy with her husband of 3 years, Zach Bogue. According to Marissa’s Wikipedia profile, the baby is due in October which indicates she took the Yahoo deal knowing she was pregnant.
Early word from interviews with Mayer indicate she’s going to focus on the core strengths of Yahoo services like Yahoo Mail, Sports, and Finance, which all have a loyal following due to the company’s long history.
If this translates out to a focus on the users, then it’s a solid strategy since Yahoo’s strength is in the users who have stuck with them through all the offerings of competition. If Yahoo can reward that loyalty and gain some fresh users in it’s strongest products, they stand a chance at regaining some of their lost user base, which is a critical first step to saving the company.