ARMONK, NY: IBM, which last week reported lower-than-expected revenues and a decline in fourth-quarter earnings, has shuffled the cards within its massive corporate communications operation.
ARMONK, NY: IBM, which last week reported lower-than-expected
revenues and a decline in fourth-quarter earnings, has shuffled the
cards within its massive corporate communications operation.
While the moves were viewed by some as a panicky response to the
business difficulties, the PR shake-up does not involve any layoffs or
resignations and thus should not be read as a sign of trouble on the
horizon, according to corporate VP of media relations Rob Wilson.
’David Kalis (IBM VP of communications, who reports directly to CEO Lou
Gerstner) regularly rotates his staff to broaden the experience of the
IBM PR team,’ Wilson explained. ’In addition to helping our staff learn
about different parts of the company, these moves keep people fresh and
While IBM’s reorganization may simply have been routine procedure,
there’s no doubt the reorganized communications team has challenges
ahead. ’Big Blue’ is hoping to shrug off its image as an overly
corporate clunker and reposition itself as a company for the future.
Most of the changes involve rotated assignments across location and
business units. Bill Hughes, VP of communications for IBM Asia-Pacific
in Tokyo, switches places with Jeffrey Cross, VP of communications in
the personal systems group.
Within the corporate group, Carol Makovich, formerly VP of worldwide
communications for RJR Nabisco (PRWeek, Jan. 10), replaces Ian Colley,
who moves to Paris as media relations director for Europe/Middle
Global services communications VP Harvey Greisman shifts to the software
group, while Melinda McMullen, media relations director for the
technology/research unit, moves into Greisman’s slot, replaced in turn
by David Yaun. Finally, global services media relations director Brian
Doyle, moves into the same post for the technology group, succeeding Ed
Barbini, who becomes media relations director for the enterprise systems