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Former CEO returns to Twitter

Next to speculation over what is going on in some Hollywood marriages, watching and speculating on the outcome of the shakeouts of major corporations' boards and their upper management makes great sport. Who is up, who is down, who is in and who is out can be amusing and sometimes instructive.

This week, Jack Dorsey, the founder and former CEO of Twitter, was named again as permanent CEO of the company, after working the last four months as "interim" CEO. Some positions on the Board of Directors also changed and apparently, this presages a complete revision to the entire board. 


The company, which has experienced explosive growth, is now suffering something of an existential crisis as to its basic purpose. Whether Dorsey can play a role similar to that of Steve Jobs after his return to Apple remains to be seen.

But if you own, run or manage a smaller business, you may recognize the danger that accompanies such drama. When managers are struggling to determine who is supposed to do a particular job, leadership may be in short supply.

When your business encounters difficulty, it is important that you have a clear operational guide, with the decision-making authority unambiguous. Because some small businesses begin with friends, informality can often rule. "We are all on the same page, so we don't need formal rules," may be the thought.

However, when problems develop, lack of a clear structure can become a tremendous distraction and make effective decision-making impossible. When you are building your business, make sure you speak with your attorney and develop a structure of control that works well for your business, both when times are good and when things go south.

Source:, "Twitter Names Jack Dorsey CEO, Adam Bain Becomes COO, Dick Costolo Steps Down From Board," Romain Dillet, Ingrid Lunden, Drew Olanoff and Matthew Lynley, October 5, 2015

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