“As Apple’s retail chief, Ron Johnson walked on water,” Steve Tobak writes for FOXBusiness. “It’s hard to imagine what it must have felt like to be a chosen disciple to join in the second coming of Steve Jobs and lead Apple’s remarkable ascension to the top of the corporate world. Come to think of it, it’s not that hard to imagine. I bet it felt great.”

“And yet, Johnson gave all that up to run J.C. Penney,” Tobak writes. “Just think about that for a second. You’re one of the top guys at Apple. You helped build the most valuable company on Earth. Then you’re CEO of a commodity clothing retailer.”

“Yes, I know Johnson worked at Target before Apple. I can almost see going back to run Target. At least Target has some cache. But Penney? That’s sort of hard to make sense of. Maybe the guy fell and hit his head on something. Who knows?” Tobak wonders. “No, that couldn’t be it. The madness continued well into his tenure. Lest we forget that the guy gutted the company and its stores from top to bottom essentially betting the farm on a bizarre and grandiose strategy to remake the retailer into an apparel version of Apple. All without test-marketing the idea first. Not a good move.”

“When he was ousted by the board, Johnson’s reputation was worth about as much as Penney’s share price. Wonder if he has any regrets about leaving Apple, grasping that particular brass ring, or thinking he could somehow magically turn coal into diamonds. We may never know,” Tobak writes. “Snarky cynicism aside, there is a much bigger question here. Why did he do it? More to the point, why do they do it? After all, Johnson is far from the only successful executive to give up a prestigious gig at an industry giant for the chance to run the corporate equivalent of a popsicle stand.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Hubris.

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