February 22, 2006 10:23 AM PST

Fiorina: Technology will 'disappear' in 25 years

The dot-com bust signaled the "end of the beginning" for technology, Carly Fiorina, the former CEO of Hewlett-Packard, told business leaders Wednesday.

Speaking at the Global Business Forum in Sydney, Fiorina told the audience that by 2030, technology will be so integral to daily living that we will take it for granted.


Carly Fiorina

"We have entered the main event of technology...We are talking about an era where technology is woven into the fabric of life and almost disappears. It means that technology is in everything and everywhere," Fiorina said.

The change will happen gradually, "although it is clearly going on now," she added.

Fiorina also explained her decision to take up positions on the boards of two companies--Cybertrust and Revolution Health--since her departure from HP just over one year ago. "In the next five years, the biggest areas of technological change will be in cybersecurity and health care. That is why I have chosen to sit on some company boards," she said.

Managing the transformation
Fiorina offered some advice to anyone looking to transform their business using something called her "leadership framework," which means viewing an organization as a combination of hardware and software.

"I would argue that structure, process, measurement and results are, to use technology terms, the hardware of the institution. The software is culture, behavior, personality, values. Just like a computer will not work without hardware and software, neither will an institution. We can't just change the hardware; you also have to change the software," she said.

According to Fiorina, a successful transformation will also require a balance of optimism and realism. "Optimism fundamentally is the belief that things can be better and people are capable of achieving more. Realism is what provides the discipline and rigor around change," she said.

"All change takes discipline and rigor. I don't care if change is losing weight or transforming a company. You better have discipline, rigor and measurement. And by the way, change happens in small steps," she added.

Munir Kotadia of ZDNet Australia reported from Sydney.

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27 comments

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I hope Fiorina will disappear sooner...
<eom>
Posted by shikarishambu (89 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Not impressed
I worked at HP during Carly's "rule." At least in my lab she was not well regarded at all. She single handedly destroyed the "HP Way," though some say she was brought in specifically for that purpose and the board of directors were the true "culprits."

HP went from being a company that cared about it's customers, stock holders and employees to a company that cared about it's stock holders first, customers second and employees were... on the list somewhere down there. Before Carly, HP could at least argue they had never had layoffs (there were some "volunteer" retirements but no official layoffs). During her leadership my lab saw 3 layoffs, and it was worse for some other sections of the company. And she made profit sharing into a joke. Even during a RECORD SETTING third quarter company performance one year, we didn't meet MINIMUM payout requirements for profit sharing.

Carly was a disaster for HP. As a CEO she's blindly focussed on short term stock value to the detriment of employee retention and long term goals. She seems to have no grasp of the value of "mindshare." The amount of talent she sold and/or gave away is staggering. She took one the great engineering companies and tried to make it a commodities business. And her ability to understand company morale, let alone manage it, was dismal. With quotes like "We don't want to be in the chip business." and "The founders didn't intend profit sharing to share profits." I'm amazed she still has any clout in this industry.

In short, she demonstrated a fundamental lack of understanding in regard to engineering companies, what makes them great and how they bring value to the market. And instead of learning a new approach she tried to force HP into a mold that had already failed at Lucent.
Posted by pwinterrowd (18 comments )
Link Flag
Fiorina and technology!
I thought she was banished from the land of technology a while ago!

I like it when rich people assume intellectual superiority and predict the future!
Posted by pdude (65 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Most interesting
A most interesting comment, coming from the failed CEO that took the direction of HP back ten to twenty years, in the short reign at the top!

But then again, these days at the pay $$$$ to hear media events she attends, she has been made to admit to assorted simple errors of poor judgement, whilst CEO at HP!, and many other pointed questions remain unanswered.

Ah such is life, for those who choose not to learn from a past historical mistakes, are forever doomed to repeat them!

Some people, never know when they are well past the use by date, or operating above and beyond the limits of their limited talents.
Posted by heystoopid (691 comments )
Reply Link Flag
ceo's what?
technology will not be decided by CEO's...just as the advent of the printing press was a tool of the revolution so technology will be
Posted by dontdocrack (1 comment )
Reply Link Flag
Dear Carly...
Shut the @#$% UP !! The new CEO at HP has accomplished more in less than a year than you did in your entire time at the helm. You were "FIRED"! Now go away never to be heard from again !!
Posted by (3 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Thanks for the Tip!
Now I know what companies NOT to invest in: Cybertrust and Revolution Health
Posted by woggs123 (22 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Duh?
All technology disappears into daily lives as the years progress idiot - that's why proper businesses put money into R&D to develop the next generation of innovation.

Cars, radios, TVs, telephones, cell phones, home theater systems, CDs, DVDs, you name it, the list is endless.

And guess what - in 25 years there will be new technologies that real R&D departments will develop that eventually will also be integrated into everybodies everyday lives.

Retard.
Posted by ajbright (447 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Disappearing space elevators
Yeah, this lady is on crack... some things may be integrated, like maybe your ipod will get a wood-grain skin to cover it like the original Atari had... but big ugly mechanical electrical and digital equipments are going to expand at an even faster rate than nice neat aesthetic feng-schue apple computers.

Even childrens shows like Robotech were smart enough to realize this 20 years ago. Why isn't Carly?
Posted by gerhard_schroeder (311 comments )
Reply Link Flag
One Gutsy Lady
Believe me, you are all wrong. It's in fact her tenacious nature that has seen HP through rough times.

Though HP did overpay Compaq for 19 Billion, in the end, it not only gained a brand and assorted products in the server and storage spave for HP, but has also seen the turnaround eventually for HP. Otherwise HP would probably have been forced to exit the desktops altogether by now.

The board of directors did realize that, but wanted her to go away in any case as they saw her as overbearing. This was when HP eventually was on the verge of profit making.

Mark Hurd had nothing much to do except for cost cutting as he took over when all the services, (Support, PCs, printers, infrastructure, aligned services and software services) were pretty much in the packaged. In fact 25000 jobs cut was announced after he took over. Though this is not a negative feeler about him, (He is doing his best for the company in his role) I personally believe Carly had more to offer HP...
Posted by thedevilbegone (139 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Carly, is that you?
What have we told you about posting under fake names on C|Net!!! LOL...

You think this lady, who makes bad analogies about "companies are hardware and software" was this great CEO? You keep drinking that politically-correct kool-aide, OK? And maybe you can then tell us about how great Hilary Clinton is because she's a woman, and how great Kofi Anan is because he's black...
Posted by gerhard_schroeder (311 comments )
Link Flag
What's really scary...
What's really scary is not that Fiorina is spouting junk and getting
paid for it, but the idea that probably half the people at the
conference wrote down what she said like it was some spark of
wisdom!

Cmon, you know they did.
Posted by pkelley1138 (8 comments )
Reply Link Flag
What?!?!
Within two years of buying Compaq, HP's share of the personal computer market was barely above where it was BEFORE buying Compaq. In other words, HP spent $19billion to nudge it's share of the personal computer market upward... and "nudge" is being generous.

Carly doesn't understand engineering companies. She doesn't understand what makes them work, or how to run them. Most of the employees at HP that I worked with during her reign as CEO expressed similar sentiments.
Posted by pwinterrowd (18 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Wrong..
Within two years of buying Compaq, HP's share of the personal computer market was barely above where it was BEFORE buying Compaq. In other words, HP spent $19billion to nudge it's share of the personal computer market upward... and "nudge" is being generous. Carly doesn't understand engineering companies. She doesn't understand what makes them work, or how to run them. Most of the employees at HP that I worked with during her reign as CEO expressed similar sentiments.

Nope that is not the case. Refer to the below link for pre-merger information.

HP's net worth pre-merger was at

Total HP Compaq Net worth
Revenues $47.0 bill $40.4 bill $87.4 bill
Assets $32.4 bill $23.9 bill $56.4 bill
Operating
Earnings $2.1 bill $1.9 bill $3.9 bill

<a class="jive-link-external" href="http://www.hp.com/hpinfo/newsroom/press/2001/010904a.html" target="_newWindow">http://www.hp.com/hpinfo/newsroom/press/2001/010904a.html</a>

Also note the point mentioned below from the article.
The merger is expected to generate cost synergies of approximately $2.0 billion in fiscal 2003, the first full year of operations; fully realized synergies are expected to reach a run rate of approximately $2.5 billion by mid-fiscal 2004.
New HP would be the #1 global player in servers, imaging &#38; printing, and access devices (PCs &#38; hand-helds), as well as Top 3 player in IT services, storage and management software.

She was on track as stated earlier by me. Except that the revenues were slightly lesser due to lower margins from the desktop and the transitioning. Also HP's position pre merger was at 7 and Compaq's at 11. Post merger, it was the third position if I am correct.

The entire story about Carly's actual role in HP and her downfall is well documented at the below site (if you care to read).
<a class="jive-link-external" href="http://www.businessweek.com/magazine/content/05_11/b3924044_mz011.htm" target="_newWindow">http://www.businessweek.com/magazine/content/05_11/b3924044_mz011.htm</a>
also read
<a class="jive-link-external" href="http://h50043.www5.hp.com/hpnewsroom/IN/eng/fast_facts.asp" target="_newWindow">http://h50043.www5.hp.com/hpnewsroom/IN/eng/fast_facts.asp</a>
It was only that the profits after merging compaq started to seep just before Carly quit. It was pure boardroom politics that she had to quit..

I still say that she was one gutsy lady who took the major decisions.
Posted by thedevilbegone (139 comments )
Link Flag
huh?
This article sounded interesting at first. But it it turns out it is full of bcrap. Fiorina is full of bcrap too.
Posted by fgam (1 comment )
Reply Link Flag
She's really deep...
Remember the HP business strategy slogan that no one understood: "Adaptive Enterprise"?

She says... things... you know... but... if they really amount to anything... like... to start with... if they mean something...

I don't know...
Posted by Mendz (519 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Attack of the inept men
The only comments on this thread that make much sense are
Ricky Pontig's "gutsy lady" remarks. The rest are the drivel of
low-achieving men who resent a successful woman. And, I do
mean low-achieving. The men criticizing Ms. Fiorina can't even
spell or write grammatical sentences, not to mentionn think
analytically. This is a showcase of their shortcomings, not hers.

HP was foundering when Ms. Fiorina became CEO. It improved
somewhat under her tenure, including achieving a higher profile.
Since her departure. HP has been characterized by retrenchment,
including layoffs.

Last, but not least, HP is not an engineering firm. Yes,
engineering is part of what a manufacturer of products does.
But, anyone who thinks that it is the only important aspect of a
manufacturer should be put out to pasture. Maybe the fellow
who said that will get his walking papers soon.
Posted by J.G. (837 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Fixes; opinion v. facts
Correction: Ricky Ponting.

ATTN Cnet: "Page not found" followed by multiple posts is
occurring more often than it used to.

What Ricky has done is demonstrate the difference between
opinons and facts. The people eager to pillory Ms. Fiorina do so
based on opinion. (With an unhealthy degree of misogyny
involved.) The facts, as he shows, don't support what they
believe.
Posted by J.G. (837 comments )
Link Flag
Attack of the inept men
The only comments on this thread that make much sense are
Ricky Pontig's "gutsy lady" remarks. The rest are the drivel of
low-achieving men who resent a successful woman. And, I do
mean low-achieving. The men criticizing Ms. Fiorina can't even
spell or write grammatical sentences, not to mentionn think
analytically. This is a showcase of their shortcomings, not hers.

HP was foundering when Ms. Fiorina became CEO. It improved
somewhat under her tenure, including achieving a higher profile.
Since her departure. HP has been characterized by retrenchment,
including layoffs.

Last, but not least, HP is not an engineering firm. Yes,
engineering is part of what a manufacturer of products does.
But, anyone who thinks that it is the only important aspect of a
manufacturer should be put out to pasture. Maybe the fellow
who said that will get his walking papers soon.
Posted by J.G. (837 comments )
Reply Link Flag
HP will 'disappear' in 25 years
HP used to be an Engineering Company, back when
Bill and Dave ran the place. By 1980, we had
critters like John Young running the place, who
wanted to be in charge of a Computer Company. . .

Today, HP makes its money from selling inkjet
cartridges. Every other division either loses
money or has an ROI below T-Bills.
It's kind of sad.

Carly did a pretty good job at Lucent's semiconductor
division (formerly known as Western Electric),
but never really understood the high-tech business
and certainly never understood high-tech culture.

Her time at HP was a disaster, and she has lost
so much credibility that she has to give speeches
on the future of technology in AUSTRALIA.
Nobody in California takes her seriously, except
maybe for those former HP employees who hate her
for laying them off.


Having said that, I think that fairness requires
that I say that HP may have been a lost cause
when she took over. The fundamental problems
which she tried (and failed) to deal with were
in place at least 10 years before she showed up.
The job sure looked like Mission Impossible. . .
Posted by (139 comments )
Link Flag
HP will 'disappear' in 25 years
HP used to be an Engineering Company, back when
Bill and Dave ran the place. By 1980, we had
critters like John Young running the place, who
wanted to be in charge of a Computer Company. . .

Today, HP makes its money from selling inkjet
cartridges. Every other division either loses
money or has an ROI below T-Bills.
It's kind of sad.

Carly did a pretty good job at Lucent's semiconductor
division (formerly known as Western Electric),
but never really understood the high-tech business
and certainly never understood high-tech culture.

Her time at HP was a disaster, and she has lost
so much credibility that she has to give speeches
on the future of technology in AUSTRALIA.
Nobody in California takes her seriously, except
maybe for those former HP employees who hate her
for laying them off.


Having said that, I think that fairness requires
that I say that HP may have been a lost cause
when she took over. The fundamental problems
which she tried (and failed) to deal with were
in place at least 10 years before she showed up.
The job sure looked like Mission Impossible. . .
Posted by (139 comments )
Link Flag
HP will 'disappear' in 25 years
HP used to be an Engineering Company, back when
Bill and Dave ran the place. By 1980, we had
critters like John Young running the place, who
wanted to be in charge of a Computer Company. . .

Today, HP makes its money from selling inkjet
cartridges. Every other division either loses
money or has an ROI below T-Bills.
It's kind of sad.

Carly did a pretty good job at Lucent's semiconductor
division (formerly known as Western Electric),
but never really understood the high-tech business
and certainly never understood high-tech culture.

Her time at HP was a disaster, and she has lost
so much credibility that she has to give speeches
on the future of technology in AUSTRALIA.
Nobody in California takes her seriously, except
maybe for those former HP employees who hate her
for laying them off.


Having said that, I think that fairness requires
that I say that HP may have been a lost cause
when she took over. The fundamental problems
which she tried (and failed) to deal with were
in place at least 10 years before she showed up.
The job sure looked like Mission Impossible. . .
Posted by (139 comments )
Link Flag
Women on Women or Men on Men- Doesn't have to be Women vs. Men
One might think you are defending Carly Fiorina because you are a woman, given the tone of vehemence in your post.

I might add that HP was facing layoffs under her direction in 2002.
Posted by afdarlington (1 comment )
Link Flag
 

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