Matt HealeyTuesday,12 February 2013

The Snap:

Tweet: “@denisleary: My vote for new pope goes to Elton John. Better music, way better outfits.”

The Download:

I would totally support that. Elton John does have some of the qualifications. He is gay so he would fit right in with the other cardinals and priests. And Leary is right, the outfits would be much better. But in all seriousness, the selection of a new pope is a big deal. Traditionally the search committee is limited to looking at internal candidates. However in this case I am not sure they should limit themselves. When large organizations face challenges, sometimes it is better to bring in an outsider as CEO. Let’s look al some of the problems. According to this Gallup poll they clearly are losing market share in the US. Granted they are a global organization, but the US still represents a considerable region and the market share loss is causing them to have to close branch offices. On a broader scale they have held share at approximately 17.5%. The problem is that most boards require market share growth as an indicator of success. Clearly they are not performing well in the market share KPI. Another key metric is the ability of the organization to recruit and keep talent. In this area they are failing badly. The total number of priests has fallen from 419,728 to 409,166 from 1970 to 2008. This is leading to shortages and an inability to service their customers. Finally in the area of innovation they are sorely lacking. While companies like Samsung can refresh their android phones every year, the church takes centuries to launch a new product. That will not work in today’s hyper connected world. Finally they clearly have an HR governance problem given the number of lawsuits they have faced in recent years. Given all of this, I think that the customers and shareholders should demand a change in management. Hire an external search firm to find a CEO Pope who shake things up. Of course given how they have failed in the past, if they did this they would likely end up with Leo Apotheker.

Hat Tips:

denisleary, Church Membership, Closures, Priest Shortage, Leo, Image Credit: Flickr

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