award for failure


News headlines on CNN Business yesterday was this Award for Failure.

Merrill Lynch’s ousted CEO, Mr Stanley O’Neil, reportedly resigned after 5 years serving as Merrill Lynch’s top executive. After the USD 8 billion reported losses earlier this week, he was in the light for the stock he has accrued during his tenure. It could amount up to $129 to $160 billion.


Somebody leave a company deeply troubled with losses and might be held accountable for $15 billion of troubled debt obligation and still walk out with stash of cash is unspeakable and I might say, well done!

This is how I am going to teach my children (if I have any in the future – knock on wood) :

  • Work hard at school, so you will get into good business school
  • Work your butt off at grad school
  • Work  the rest of your butt and other parts of your body off at big firm so you can become one of the top man in the industry
  • Relax and just act cool – if the company you are responsible for does well, great – if not, continue below
  • Walk off with big stock options and possibly big severence package
  • Share your new fortune with your momma (aka me)

Nevertheless, Mr O’Neil is one more living testament how anyone, regardless of skin colour and background, can make it big in America. Hats off to Mr. O’Neil!

Check out the rest of the story at


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