上周二，雅虎公司（Yahoo）CEO卡罗尔•巴茨与美国银行（Bank of America）财富管理主管萨莉•克劳切克双双遭遇解雇，《财富》杂志（Fortune）最具影响力商界女性（Most Powerful Women）榜单遭受双重打击。
2. 聘用“特立独行的人”，要能够应对她们引起的“骚动”。雅虎显然是一个生动的反面教材：要想扭转公司颓势，巴茨并非合适的领导者，但无能的董事会却未能及早发现这一点。而克劳切克是金融服务业最闪亮的一颗明星，早在37岁时，她便登上了《财富》杂志的封面，并被冠之为“华尔街最后一位诚实的分析师”（The Last Honest Analyst），当时她正担任桑弗德•伯恩斯坦公司（Sanford Bernstein）的负责人，而华尔街的其他公司却纷纷陷入利益冲突丑闻无法自拔。之后，花旗集团力图重塑被玷污的声誉，于是克劳切克临危受命。但在就投资不善对客户进行赔偿的问题上，克劳切克却与公司高层产生了分歧，进而遭到了排挤。她在美国银行的任职虽然还算顺利，但公司业绩每况愈下，而她又一直无法融入莫尼汉的核心集团，所以实际上，她的命运早已注定。
5. 遭遇解雇并非世界末日。莫尼汉对美国银行高层重新洗牌，克劳切克被排除在外。但这却不能抹杀克劳切克曾经取得的辉煌成绩：她成功重建了美国银行的财富管理业务，其中包括重组美林证券公司（Merrill Lynch）。在她任职期间，公司的主要指标均大幅提升，包括公司收入、利润、销售利润率，以及员工的士气等；于此同时，公司各方面的损耗也显著下降。银行分析师迪克•波夫对克劳切克有所了解。上周，他在接受美国全国广播公司财经频道（CNBC）采访时称，对于这次被解雇，克劳切克应该学到的最重要的一点是选择更适合自己的职业——甚至可以重操旧业，重新做一名分析师。虽然克劳切克对此保持了沉默，但从之前与她的对话中可以看出，她更喜欢接受巨大的、严峻的挑战。失败阻止不了她前进的脚步。她还会东山再起。
It was a double hit to Fortune's Most Powerful Women list last Tuesday when YahooCEO Carol Bartz and Bank of America's (BAC) Sallie Krawcheck got fired.
Bartz, No. 10 in our 2010 MPW rankings, went out with a bang--as my explosive interview with her, F-bombs included, shows. Meanwhile, Krawcheck, BofA's global wealth management chief and No. 24 on our list, exited without a sound.
I know both women well, and it's worth observing that they are, in certain ways, a common type: They're both fierce, sometimes defiant executives who like playing "outsider" inside organizations and proudly take the flak that comes with it. "That is really good," Bartz said of this characterization, when she called me last Wednesday night, 27 hours after getting ousted.
There are more differences, though, between Bartz, who was the tech industry's most powerful woman, and Krawcheck, who was Wall Street's woman on top--and five lessons to take away from their mishaps:
1. If you must fire someone, do it in person. Bartz, who talked to Fortune exclusively, was livid that Yahoo chairman Roy Bostock fired her her over the phone. Last Tuesday, she had arrived in Manhattan for a Citigroup (C) technology conference, and Bostock "was in New York City," she said. "There's no excuse for him not meeting with me." Same day, different style: BofA CEO Brian Moynihan booted Krawcheck in person. Rather than phone her from Charlotte, North Carolina headquarters, he wisely flew to New York.
2. If you hire an "outsider," make sure you can handle the rabblerousing. Yahoo could not--this was a case of a troubled company, an ill-fitting chief, and a board too weak to acknowledge early on that Bartz wasn't right for the turnaround challenge. As for Krawcheck, here was a financial-services star who had made the cover of Fortune as "The Last Honest Analyst" at age 37 when she was heading research firm Sanford Bernstein and the rest of Wall Street was mired in conflict-of-interest scandals. At Citigroup (C), which brought her in to help heal its damaged reputation, she clashed with top management--and was pushed out--over the issue of reimbursing clients for bad investments. Her run at BofA wasn't so acrimonious, but outside Moynihan's inner circle at a shrinking company, she was practically doomed.
3. Speak no evil. As my colleague Dan Primack reported on Friday, Bartz's Yahoo employment contract has a non-disparagement clause. And she put a $10 million pay package at risk by calling the Yahoo directors "doofuses." If she doesn't bash the board again, she may well get her money, it appears.
4. Age matters. Bartz is 63. Krawcheck is 46. Bartz, who resigned from the Yahoo board on Friday, remains Cisco's (CSCO) lead independent director. After heading two major tech companies, Autodesk (ADSK) and Yahoo--there's scant chance she'll run another, she admitted to me last week. Krawcheck, in contrast, has a long runway ahead.
5. Getting fired isn't death, necessarily. Even though Moynihan didn't want Krawcheck in his new lineup, she did a good job rebuilding the bank's wealth management operation, including Merrill Lynch. Key measures--revenues, profits, margins, morale--went up, while attrition went down during her tenure. Some who know her, like bank analyst Dick Bove on CNBC last week, think the main lesson for Krawcheck is to choose her jobs better--and maybe even go back to her roots as an analyst. Won't happen. Krawcheck isn't talking, but I know from previous conversations with her that she loves a big and messy turnaround. Failure doesn't phase her. She'll be back.