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Who Moved My Cheese? or “We have lost our passion to WIN”

“Who Moved My Cheese” is a best selling book about change. It is a hideous read. When I first saw it, I am not sure which made my stomach turn harder – trying to read it, accepting that someone had paid money for it, or accepting that someone in upper management believed that everyone below him needed to read it.

But I was reminded of it when I read this:

Change is hard.

That is an excerpt from a leaked internal Yahoo! memo from Yahoo! Senior Vice President Brad Garlinghouse, as published on Search Engine Journal. Garlinghouse is calling for big changes at Yahoo!, and among my favorite parts are:

We have lost our passion to win…

Existing business owners must be held accountable for where we find ourselves today – heads must roll…

We need to fundamentally rethink how we organize to win…

There was some discussion about Yahoo! on ThreadWatch last week, and I suggested that maybe when mid-level executives leave Yahoo! for start-ups it is a reflection of their desire to be in on a startup, or a reflection of their lack of commitment to Yahoo! (desire to be somewhere else) and not necesarily a sign of problems at Yahoo. Now it is clear that change is coming down from the top.

Problems at Yahoo? Maybe. I’m not qualified to say. Perhaps the big change came after those mid-level people jumped ship. But that memo is a good read. You didn’t see one like that from Xerox or Digital back in the past, right?

To me, things look very promising for Yahoo when someone sends a memo like that.