Leaving Their Jobs ?

Why A Growing Number Of CEOs Are 

Surya-Pratap Singh

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In December, 106 CEOs left their posts, according to a monthly tracker conducted by executive outplacement firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas, which noted that this October’s 142 CEO departures was the second-highest month on record. In total, the number of departing CEOs in the final quarter of 2021 was up 16 percent on a year-over-year basis.

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If historical trends hold true, companies will need to brace for an expected wave of CEO departures in January, traditionally the highest month for CEO departures going back to when Challenger started tracking the numbers in 2004.

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Dhruv Ghulati started London-based Factmata, a tech company that uses artificial intelligence to combat online misinformation in 2017, when he was just 25 years old. Prior to Covid, Ghulati already had been exploring the idea of an exit, and had a candidate lined up to replace him in early 2020. When that fell through, it was a heavy blow — and the pandemic quickly piled on the rest. “That also took a lot of wind out of my sails,” he said. “I kind of felt stuck.”

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Ghulati said he struggled with employee retention in the early months of the pandemic. Working for a startup suddenly doesn’t seem like a safe bet, he said, and operational challenges compounded his stress. I felt like I could only take that many beatings, he said.

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ZipRecruiter’s Pollak observed that the departures often have positive effects for the CEOs themselves. “I think that we’re observing what I’ve referred to as people wanting to balance their lives,” she said. “I’m seeing people who have really reevaluated their lifestyle because of the pandemic. I know executives who finally got to know their kids, and they don’t want to give that up.”

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Raising prices carries the risk that people will cancel. Netflix remains the dominant U.S. streaming service, but others, such as HBO Max and Disney+, have increased in popularity.

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Netflix shares gained in late trading after news of the price increase came out. The stock closed up $6.49, or 1.3 percent, to $525.69. The company reports its fourth-quarter financial results Thursday

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