If he wants to, Eddie McGuire will probably become an outstanding CEO
one day – he is smart, sharp, well-connected, tough, quick on his feet
and highly admired.

But having said that, he would be a disastrous choice to run the Nine
Network now, for three reasons: he has never worked in management, he
has never run a large company or a division, and he hasn’t made his
management mistakes.

Not having made mistakes is his biggest drawback. As James Packer
knows only too well (it’s called OneTel), you need to make some big
ones in order to learn how not to (or how to minimise the impact of the
inevitable mistakes you continue to make).

To put Eddie McGuire in the CEO’s seat at Nine without him having had
any big company management experience or without having made the
mistakes you make on the way up could be as big a mistake by James
Packer as OneTel.

Tell Eddie he’s a great CEO in the making but, like all of us, you have to learn and earn your way, not start at the top.

Don’t do it, James.

Peter Fray

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Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey