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Forrester Research CEO: Mark Zuckerberg’s skills as a CEO are overrated

November 9th, 2010 at 8:58 AM

George Colony, founder and CEO of Forrester Research, keeps a blog that “contains ideas, observations, and analyses to help drive the success of other CEOs.” In a post yesterday, Mr. Colony bluntly stated that Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg is, to date, “a one-trick pony.” In acknowledging that Facebook is an excellent concept, Mr. Colony also writes that Mr. Zuckerberg has not “morphed” Facebook all that much from its original form. It is still the same idea, and for that reason, the market-research company’s CEO is skeptical.

“We didn’t declare Andy Grove a great CEO based on Intel’s domination of the dynamic random access memory market,” writes Mr. Colony. “But when he survived a close brush with bankruptcy, pivoted the company into microprocessors, and teamed with Microsoft to dominate personal computers, we recognized what a great CEO he had become.” The article also cites Steve Jobs’ ability to turn his creativity into “important products across three generations of customers and four unique generations of computing,” as an example.

“Zuckerberg appears to have the raw material to be a great CEO,” the post continues, “but we won’t know if he is or isn’t until he creates a new popular product or morphs Facebook into a monetary engine that justifies its current irrational valuation.” It seems as though Forrester’s CEO is saying what many — especially those on Wall Street contemplating a Facebook IPO — are thinking.

Now, George Colony may be getting a bit ahead of himself, as both Andy Grove and Steve Jobs have had decades to prove their mettle. But the article does foster great discussion points about Zuck, Facebook, and the privately held company’s $33 billion valuation. So sound off! We want to know what you think about the world’s largest social network, its CEO, and its current price-tag.

Thanks, C!

[Image credit: The New York Times]


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