The Bully CIO

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    I'm bugged by "Mechanics of a Merger," an article in last week's ComputerWorld that discusses the merging of IT systems done at Vanguard Car Rental USA. Vanguard is the corporation formed by the merging of National Rent A Car and Alamo Rent a Car.

    What bugs me is the photo showing CIO Tyler Best smiling into the camera, along with CEO William Lobeck — just under these words:

    Three days after Best showed up for his first day of work at Vanguard's Fort Lauderdale, Fla., headquarters, he fired all 85 IT people.

    Granted. the layoffs took place in mid-2003, which means most of those folks have probably gone through the denial/grieving/anger/acceptance process of losing their jobs. But the general insensitivity rankles me. This guy Best sounds like a bully in the article. Is he the kind of guy to profile and hold up as an exemplary CIO to the rest of the IT management world?

    However, there is one useful tidbit in the story: Perot is handling IT services for Vanguard. To erase the lines between the two firms, the personnel from Perot sport Vanguard logos on their business cards — people don't know that those IT people are from an external company.

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