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Ex-Procter & Gamble CEO to Be Nominated as VA Secretary

 
 
Reply Sun 29 Jun, 2014 03:13 pm
http://online.wsj.com/articles/ex-procter-gamble-ceo-to-be-nominated-as-va-secretary-1404073211

"His 33-year tenure at P&G prepares him well for a huge agency with management challenges in servicing more than eight million veterans a year," the official said.

Mr. McDonald served as chief executive of Procter & Gamble Co. from 2009 until May 2013.

Mr. McDonald, a former paratrooper, graduated at the top of his class from West Point and served as a captain in the U.S. Army for five years.

Mr. McDonald resigned from Procter & Gamble last year after 33 years at the company after investors grew concerned that he wasn't doing more to cut costs and deliver more consistent results.

The White House also highlighted Mr. McDonald's work serving veterans, noting that he has been a significant supporter of the U.S. Military Academy and is a life member of the U.S. Army Ranger Association.

"This is step one in a much larger plan that will be necessary to reform the VA," said Paul Rieckhoff, founder of Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America, a veterans' advocacy group. "One person isn't going to fix this massive bureaucracy."

Mr. Rieckhoff criticized the president for what he said has been an opaque selection process. "He's really doing this without any counseling from the veterans' community," he said.

Sen. Bernie Sanders, an independent from Vermont who leads the Senate Committee on Veterans' Affairs, struck a neutral tone on the expected nomination.

"The VA needs significantly improved transparency and accountability, and it needs an increased number of doctors, nurses and other medical staff," Mr. Sanders said in a statement. "I look forward to meeting with Mr. McDonald next week to ascertain his views on these important issues."

Mr. McDonald, who lives in Cincinnati with his wife, has donated to Republican candidates, including 2012 GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney, House Speaker John Boehner and Ohio Sen. Rob Portman, according to filings tracked by the Center for Responsible Politics.

Mr. McDonald was appointed by President George W. Bush in 2007 to an advisory committee on trade policy and reappointed to the panel by Mr. Obama in 2010.
 
RABEL222
 
  2  
Reply Sun 29 Jun, 2014 03:56 pm
@edgarblythe,
Gee! Another big business CEO appointed to high office by a (democratic?) president who is supposed to be a liberal. We cant find any liberal person who could do the job. It once more appears that no matter who a liberal votes for he is going to get ultraconservative government. I am beginning to think the only way to achieve change is by armed means.
hawkeye10
 
  2  
Reply Sun 29 Jun, 2014 04:05 pm
@RABEL222,
Quote:
Gee! Another big business CEO appointed to high office by a (democratic?) president who is supposed to be a liberal
In this case a failed CEO...one has to wonder how he so quickly lost the support of his board of directors, to the point that they forced him out.
0 Replies
 
JPB
 
  4  
Reply Sun 29 Jun, 2014 04:34 pm
Obama has never been a liberal. That's spin that has never held muster. He's a centrist. I've always seen him as such and this appointment is another in a long line of centrist moves. I don't know anything about this particular appointee, but he seems to have a centrist mindset. Not cutthroat enough for the shareholders of P&G, not liberal enough for the liberals. I like it. Everything he ever said or did will be scrutinized over over the coming weeks, but if he's willing to do the job and he's willing to cut out a bunch of middle managers while propping up the quality of care for the vets then I'm ok with the appt at this point.
edgarblythe
 
  4  
Reply Sun 29 Jun, 2014 04:37 pm
@JPB,
I think the man has a background to be sympathetic to the needs of veterans. And he will not make all the decisions. Whoever has the job will need lots of help.
JPB
 
  2  
Reply Sun 29 Jun, 2014 04:39 pm
@edgarblythe,
true
0 Replies
 
JTT
 
  -1  
Reply Sun 29 Jun, 2014 05:37 pm
@edgarblythe,
Ever wonder why the USA has so many vets, Ed, when the last war was almost 70 years ago?

I didn't think so.
0 Replies
 
Brandon9000
 
  2  
Reply Sun 29 Jun, 2014 06:07 pm
It can't hurt that he's a veteran, West Point graduate, winner of the Meritorious Service Medal, etc.
JTT
 
  1  
Reply Sun 29 Jun, 2014 06:11 pm
@Brandon9000,
The USA is deeply and seriously infected with the dreaded military disease.
0 Replies
 
plainoldme
 
  1  
Reply Mon 30 Jun, 2014 02:01 am
I understand that the actual running of the VA has been terrible. Still, P & G represents the worst of corporate America to me. I am not comfortable with this appointment.
hawkeye10
 
  1  
Reply Mon 30 Jun, 2014 02:04 am
@plainoldme,
This is a reformer?

Doubtful.
plainoldme
 
  1  
Reply Mon 30 Jun, 2014 02:58 pm
@hawkeye10,
Not sure what you mean here. When you ask This is a reformer? are you talking about the guy Obama appointed? It may be his business experience will help him bring efficiency to the VA but P&G is a pushy organization.
hawkeye10
 
  1  
Reply Mon 30 Jun, 2014 03:38 pm
@plainoldme,
plainoldme wrote:

Not sure what you mean here. When you ask This is a reformer? are you talking about the guy Obama appointed? It may be his business experience will help him bring efficiency to the VA but P&G is a pushy organization.


Yes, the way I understand it Obama sent a white house insider over to VA to figure out WTF has gone wrong, and to see if the solution was reform or scrap (most likely break up). The answer was reform. I see nothing in the history of this failed CEO that tells me that he is a reformer. The most important skill in the reformers toolbox is political skills, and I dont think you get that in a failed corporate CEO. This guy seems like maybe the guy you get to manage a huge bureaucracy when you want it to hum on its current course.

Maybe he has some surprises up his sleeve,?
0 Replies
 
RABEL222
 
  1  
Reply Mon 30 Jun, 2014 03:50 pm
@JPB,
Your probably right about his cutting out the middle managers but I wouldent bet on the improved care. It has been my experience that the middle and low managers know better as to what is going on at the business end of care than a CEO who is on his ass behind his big desk and only gets out to eat lunch with some other big shot.
0 Replies
 
engineer
 
  1  
Reply Tue 1 Jul, 2014 07:44 am
@edgarblythe,
edgarblythe wrote:

I think the man has a background to be sympathetic to the needs of veterans. And he will not make all the decisions. Whoever has the job will need lots of help.

I can't argue with that, but this is a strange pick. This guy was not tremendously successful as the CEO at P&G. The stuff he did well was around cost cutting, not expanding the company or the brand. From what I've read, he looks like the type of manager that runs a company from a spreadsheet instead of providing vision and leadership. This guy is also a solid republican, giving a few thousand to each Romney and Boehner. If I was the President, I would be looking for a strong, no nonsense, kick butt leader type, not a corporate manager type and I certainly would be looking for someone who I thought was overall in tune with my administration. This doesn't seem to be that guy.
hawkeye10
 
  1  
Reply Tue 1 Jul, 2014 10:32 am
@engineer,
This pick so far seems to validate the theory that the VA is so huge and far flung that there are only 7 guys in America with the skills to run it, and Obama needs to talk one of them into taking the job. This guy was out of work with no prospects, he was available and interested. BINGO!
plainoldme
 
  1  
Reply Wed 2 Jul, 2014 09:11 am
@hawkeye10,
I was thinking that Obama was after organizational savvy, hence a CEO. P&G doesn't need brand expansion: about 40 years ago, its business plan was to double by weight the volume of each product sold every decade.

but if this guy does not have organizational skills, what good is he to the VA?
engineer
 
  1  
Reply Wed 2 Jul, 2014 09:35 am
@plainoldme,
My belief is that CEO's don't need any organizational skills. A CEO needs drive and vision. If he is driving his vision down the organization, his staff can handle the organization. It is completely possible that this guy has great organization skills so he was tapped to lead P&G, only to discover that the leadership and vision skills are lacking. I don't think the VA needs organization, I think it needs a clear vision and someone who is going to ensure that every person working for the VA understands and shares that vision.
0 Replies
 
 

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