modest and willful, humble and fearless. Colman Mockler, CEO of Gillette from 1975 to 1991 was all of those things.
During Mockler's term, Gillette faced three attacks that threatened to wipe out the company's opportunity for greatness.
Two attacks came as hostile takeover bids from Revlon who had a reputation for breaking apart companies. The third attack came from Coniston Partners, an investment group that bought 5.9 per cent of Gillette stock and initiated a alternative battle to seize control of the board, hoping Gillette would sales the company to the highest bidder and pocket a quick gain on their shares. Looking at a $2.3bn short-term share profit across 116 million shares, most executives would have capitulated, pocketing millions from flipping their own stock and cashing in on generous golden parachutes. He concentrated on a limited number of promising markets, particularly high-volume, repeat-purchase consumer items, selling Ziegler's least successful acquisitions, pumping money into promising companies compatible with already-existing manufacturing or distribution capabilities
Colman Mockler did not capitulate, choosing instead to fight for the future greatness of Gillette, even though he himself would have pocketed a substantial sum on his own shares. A quiet and reserved man, always courteous, Mockler had the reputation as a gracious, almost noble gentleman. Yet those who mistook Mockler's reserved nature for weakness found themselves beaten in the end.. In the substitute fight, senior Gillette executives reached out to thousands of individual investors - person by person, phone call by phone call - and won the battle. Colman Mockler exemplify a key trait of Level 5 leaders: ambition first and foremost for the company and... [continues]
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