Eric Schmidt joined Google as its CEO in 2001. Even though the company was already a smashing success, he knew his job wouldn’t be easy. Schmidt, 61, understood the risk that founders take when hiring an outsider as CEO. Clashes can occur as founders chafe at the CEO’s decisions.
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The traits that served Dick Costolo well during Twitter’s early years did not help him once it became a public company. His background did not prepare him to run a huge global business with investors clamoring for stable growth.