There also use to be the joke that HP stood for "High Price". But everyone also understood that you were getting a reliable product of good quality. My HP calculator still works, and its corresponding manual is one of the few manuals I have read from cover to cover.
I don't want to speak out of turn here, but how many CEO's are actually worth 10's of millions of dollars per year? Some of them just seem to drain X times their salary from the bottom line, while contributing almost nothing of value. Others definitely contribute value to the company and the stockholders, but how exactly is that value determined?
I'm just wondering, because lately I've been thinking about all the 10's of millions of dollars that have left American corporations into the pockets of CEOs who might as well not even have shown up to work. In fact, for some of them, not showing up to work would've been by far the best thing they could've done for their shareholders, customers and employees.
One time I bought HP calculators and HP computers because of HP oscilloscope.
HP was synonymous of high quality and excellent engineering.
If they were making instruments they could have said 'our tablets have the same quality of these instrument'.
You're entirely missing the point -- the similarity isn't gender, it's a willful ignorance of technical culture. Carly was called "the Anti-Steve Jobs" by Infoworld by being able to alienate engineers within seconds of meeting. Ms. Whitman can aspire to such heights if she puts her toothpaste experience on the shelf and stops pushing people around, but I doubt any higher.
I wonder whether HP most needs help in knowing what its past mistakes were, so it can learn from them.
For instance, the web-pad fiasco - why did HP think it could price the device at parity with iPad? it shows a lack of understanding the market, of why people pay a premium for Apple products, etc.
Another example is HP policies in the IT world - take pricing of disks as a random example. We all know how much (little!) a 1TB 7200 RPM 3.5" SATA disk costs, so HP needs to display a bit of humility in not marking it up by a factor of 4x.
HP product lines are absurdly ramified and complex. Even just rackmount x86 servers are practically impossible to navigate without serious, sit-down study. That kind of make-it-because-we-can doesn't leave any corporate energy to purse more interesting products that might lead to future growth, rather than just carpet-bombing the same highly-competitive boring-server market.
Here's another example: imagine that HP servers used standard (ATX/SSI/etc) motherboards. would this help? a full-custom server lets you tweak each cable run, but how much actual advantage does that provide, versus leveraging the mass market? Imagine if HP could produce a line of motherboards that were actually more attractive (faster, more robust, etc) than commodity vendors. or an LCD panel that wasn't just a clone of the same thing from Dell/Apple/etc. A disk drive packaged with 4G of flash used as a cache. A bomb-proof, triple-redundant enterprise server that could timeshare 10,000 simultaneous x86 VM sessions.
Patience has its rewards. It may be unfair to label Whitman CarlyII simply because she is a strong woman executive. I will give Whitman till the end of the year to get the H-P house moving in a positive direction where perceptions are bound to change about her abilities. At the same time I'm no apologist for Whitman; just looking to give a fair shot at her leading the company I have admired since my technical school days. It was an engineer's engineering company and from what I see it still is.
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