Long ago, Motorola was the largest employer in Arizona. My grandfather worked there. My Father worked and retired from there. My Mom worked there. Aunts, Uncles, Cousins, a lot of my family worked there. I wanted to make computer chips so when I was 18, I applied to work at Motorola. I went to their employment offices and took their tests. They used to give math and other tests because they wanted highly technical people working there.
I grew up listening to my parents talk about their work at the dinner table and even though they were as far away from the CEO as anyone could be, yet they still knew that the company was poorly run. Engadget received a letter from the adviser to Geoffrey Frost, Motorola’s Chief Marketing Officer to Greg Brown the CEO of Motorola describing how screwed up the company is.
It really angers me to see that you’re really no different from the rest of the incompetent senior executives at Motorola — but instead of merely being incompetent, you killing the company. Your lack of understanding of the consumer business doesn’t give you a valid reason for selling the business; moreover, publicly disclosing your explorations of such a move, in an attempt to keep Carl Icahn off your back, shows how much you value the safety of your incompetence. You have no interest in fighting the good fight and attempting to mould Motorola into the market leader it can and should be; taking control of the handset division, as you have recently done, will accomplish very little — it will simply give you an ability to say “we tried our best” when you finally cart the business off to the highest bidder.
Motorola was once a great company that made great products. I remember a Motorola radio in my grandfathers workshop. Everyone wanted a StarTac when they came out (I eventually had one when they got cheap, it’s around here somewhere). 68k and PowerPC chips were very competitive with x86 chips from Intel.
Now they are splitting into yet more companies because they can’t seem to figure out what it is they do. Thanks to this greedy, stupid management thousands of people in Arizona lost their jobs. Some of the former Motorola factories are still there as Freescale factories, but many of them were simply tore down.
I thankfully never went to work for Motorola. Instead I went to work for another company that makes computer chips. I look at the failure that is Motorola and compare it to what is happening at my employer. I hope my managers all the way up to the CEO learn from these failures too.