“First of all, Ron Johnson did a great job at Apple as VP Retail,” Paul Denlinger writes for Forbes. “Perhaps unconsciously though, it gave rise to blind spots, which have hit him hard after he became JCPenney’s CEO.”

“At Apple, Ron Johnson could do whatever he liked, and he never had to worry about the share price. Basically, he had to convince one person that he was on the right track: Steve Jobs. This is not the case at JCPenney’s; his critics are mainly Wall St. analysts and hedge fund managers. These are people who are not interested in operations and marketing; they just want the share price to hold. When it doesn’t, they call for his head,” Denlinger writes. “Selling Apple products was easy compared to selling JCPenney’s merchandise, which is not designed or made by JCPenney’s. Apple is a vertically integrated company; JCPenney’s is not.”

Denlinger writes, “Because of his long service at Apple, Ron may have overlooked these very basic differences and was overly optimistic about how fast he could turn things around. Before Apple, he was at Target, where he built up a good reputation in retail. It would serve him well to think about what he learned at Target, which is now considered a retail success.”

Read more in the full article here.

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