Twitter just announced that CEO Dick Costolo will be stepping down on July 1, with company cofounder Jack Dorsey taking his place as interim CEO.
It’s been a rough year for Twitter, with investors and analysts wondering lately whether it was time for a change in leadership.
At a recent conference Costolo was actually asked point-blank whether he would still have his job in the next seven months. His answer is particularly interesting now:
On stage at Re/Code’s Code Conference at the end of May, host Kara Swisher asked the million-dollar question bluntly:
“Are you going to have your job by the end of the year?”
Costolo said he wasn’t worried.
“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 overcommunicates with the board, making sure strategy and expectations align. But he admits that a constant barrage of questions and the 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 said. “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.”
He said he wasn’t 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.
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