Three leadership qualities Elon Musk’s replacement as Twitter CEO should have

in a fort response to a recent Twitter poll Posted by Elon Musk, users of the platform have asked him to step down from his position as CEO. Musk has responded that he will leave office when “find someone dumb enough” to take over as CEO, saying he will lead the software and server teams instead. But any replacement will need to be able to steer Twitter back into calmer waters, with Musk as the majority owner.

Has been a tumultuous year for Twitter and Musk. He began accumulating shares in the company in January 2022 and his US$44bn (£36bn) offer to buy the platform was accepted in April. He then tried to back out of the deal in July, before finally taking ownership in October. Since then, he has made, and at times rolled back, numerous changes to the popular social media platform.

In fact, Musk’s reaction to finally getting his hands on Twitter has been reminiscent of Christmas morning, when kids open presents, show initial enthusiasm, then quickly lose interest. Musk may have imagined that owning the website would be fun and make him feel powerful.

But the reality has been quite different. He has been criticized and abused, both online and in real life and now 57.5% of the more than 17.5 million Twitter users they have voted for him to step down as their CEO.

Musk published the survey himself and has since responded “interesting” to a suggestion that fake accounts could have skewed the results. He also agreed that only paid subscribers should be able to vote about future changes in Twitter policy.

Has been some speculations that Musk has come under pressure from other Twitter shareholders and lenders to move forward. Furthermore, Musk has been selling billions in Tesla stock and its share price is down more than 60% this year. Shareholders of the automobile firm. you’d probably like to see your hitherto successful CEO come back full-time.

So if Twitter wants to find a new CEO, what kind of person should the troubled social media platform be looking for? As a student of leadership, I can see three key requirements for anyone considering, or being considered for, this role right now:

1. Confidence and independence

A new Twitter CEO will want assurances that he will be free to make decisions about the direction of the business without Musk questioning him as the majority owner. So the new CEO will need to have confidence, perhaps even arrogance, and be ready to stand his ground.

2. The ability to face the facts

The new leader will have to “confront the brutal facts” of the situation; According to management expert Jim Collins, this is how to initiate a productive change. Twitter is struggling financially.

Musk paid $44 billion to buy it, perhaps double what it was worth. He borrowed huge sums and sold large tranches of Tesla stock. to help finance the acquisition. But now you could face interest payments to lenders for up to a billion dollars a year unless Twitter’s financial health can be reversed. These are the brutal facts that a new leader must face.

3. An imaginative approach to management

The current position of the social media platform leads to a third requirement for the new leader: imagination. Twitter is a resounding practical success. He is influential and powerful. It has certainly sped up the flow of information (certainly inaccurate as well as useful information).

And you can be a force for good, for example by providing facts and advice during the COVID-19 pandemic or helping to highlight the failings of politicians or the media, even with the bullying and abuse that seems an inevitable part of tweet.

But is it really a business proposition? It’s not a platform like Facebook or Instagram that can deliver billions of users to potential advertisers. In fact, many featured advertisers left the site apparently in response to Musk’s chaotic decision-making.

Perhaps the imaginative leap for the new CEO to take is to turn Twitter into a viable non-profit organization, one that has enormous utility and value, if not the ability to easily make money for its owners and advertisers. In this case, a central task for the new CEO will be to recognize what kind of business Twitter is and decide if it is really a conventional for-profit business.

stick with the plan

And this brings us to an important task for any future CEO of Twitter, and perhaps the heart of the problem with Twitter. Musk changes his mind frequently: sometimes in hours, as we saw recently when it appeared to backtrack on a policy change regarding users’ ability to link to other social media accounts. You may reconsider resigning, or even appointing someone just to fire them.

This brings us to a very valuable leadership lesson that the maverick Musk has taught everyone in recent months: We should hesitate to label energetic people great leaders in any setting until we have seen what their long-term impact has been. .

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