On stage at Re/code’s Code Conference on Thursday, host Kara Swisher asked the million dollar question bluntly while interviewing Twitter CEO Dick Costolo:
“Are you going to have your job by the end of the year?”
It’s been a rough year for Twitter. Its stock plummeted after its disappointing Q1 earnings and some are wondering whether it’s time for a change in leadership.
“The board and I are totally in sync about what we need to do — we have a very clear strategy that we’ve articulated and that we’re following,” Costolo said on stage. “I don’t worry about whether I’ll be there at the end of the year.”
He added that, if anything, he over-communicates with the board, making sure strategy and expectations align. But, he admits that a constant barrage of questions and dialogue about whether he should be out of the company aren’t something that he can ignore.
“As a CEO you have to balance grit and resiliency with self awareness,” he says. “If you just have self awareness and not grit, you’ll be over in the corner with your hands over your head. If you have grit but not self-awareness, you could be delusional and spin the company off the tracks.”
At this point, he says he’s not worried about appeasing Wall Street and is much more focused on executing on the company’s long-term strategy of growing logged in, logged out, and syndicated users (people who see tweets when they’re embedded in other places, for example).
With the outside pressure and added spotlight, he and his team continually question whether they’re making their next move based on short term demands or what’s actually best for the company in the long-term.
“I don’t think the team has ever been stronger,” he says.