Three Envelopes
Posted by Bal Vallah on September 02, 1998 at 01:15:26:

A fellow had just been hired as the new CEO of a large high tech corporation. The CEO who was
stepping down met with him privately and presented him with three numbered envelopes. "Open these if
you run up against a problem you don't think you can solve," he said.

Well, things went along pretty smoothly, but six months later, sales took a downturn and he was
really catching a lot of heat. About at his wits's end, he remembered the envelopes. He went to his
drawer and took out the first envelope. The message read, "Blame your predecessor."

The new CEO called a press conference and tactfully laid the blame at the feet of the previous CEO.
Satisfied with his comments, the press -- and Wall Street -- responded positively, sales began to
pick up and the problem was soon behind him.

About a year later, the company was again experiencing a slight dip in sales, combined with serious
product problems. Having learned from his previous experience, the CEO quickly opened the second
envelope. The message read, "Reorganize." This he did, and the company quickly rebounded.

After several consecutive profitable quarters, the company once again fell on difficult times. The
CEO went to his office, closed the door and opened the third envelope.

The message said, "Prepare three envelopes."

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