Unsurprisingly we have Randians rising in the business world as well. One example lies in the current CEO of Sears who was an investment broker that eventually took control of Sears Holdings by way of an external power grab. He was touted as a wunderkind of sorts when he was handling investment accounts before, so certainly he's well qualified to dictate the leadership of a large retailer, right?
Well, not really.
An outspoken advocate of free-market economics and fan of the novelist Ayn Rand, he created the model because he expected the invisible hand of the market to drive better results. If the companyâ(TM)s leaders were told to act selfishly, he argued, they would run their divisions in a rational manner, boosting overall performance.
So how is that working out?
Sears Holdingsâ(TM) sales have dropped from $49.1 billion to $39.9 billion, and its stock has sunk 64 percent. Its cash recently fell to a 10-year low. Although it has plenty of assets to unload before bankruptcy looms, the odds of a turnaround grow longer every quarter
But clearly, it's not for lack of trying, right? As CEO he must be there all the time, right? Wrong. He is known to visit Sears HQ no more than twice a year, due to his "dislike of flying". He spends most of his time at his $40M Florida mansion. Is the leader partying while the empire burns? Just consider what you would do if you had such digs.
Being as each division now manages itself with complete disregard (or even disdain) for other units that effectively operate in the same store, one cannot help but wonder if this is part of why Sears Craftsman tools are increasingly being made in China.