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By now you may have heard that Men’s Wearhouse Inc. has ousted Executive Chairman George Zimmer, the iconic face (and voice) of the suit-and-tie company he founded 40 years ago.
Remember the gentleman with a smooth husky voice who coined the slogan, “You’re going to like the way you look. I guarantee it”? That’s him.
The board didn’t give an explanation for the ouster, but Zimmer thinks it was because he expressed concerns over the direction the board was taking his company, reports San Francisco Bay Area’s KNTV. As in-house counsel, you should take note of the Zimmer ouster. Here are a few lessons to keep in mind:
It's important to make clear whether you have a "limited life" corporation or one whose value to society supersedes the founder. For Zimmer's company, it's a tough voice to replace.
During times of internal upheaval, you are an important link between the founder and the board. You need to bridge the gap during transitional periods. You also need to help management understand aspects of the organization so they will have the necessary tools to hire and evaluate the founder's successor.
You're going to like the way your company looks. I guarantee it.