Sunday, April 06, 2014

Musings on a wounded giant

Long way from the garage
Shanghai, China
May 2012
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You don't hear all that much about HP these days. The company also known as Hewlett-Packard is one of Silicon Valley's true innovators, the one that first institutionalized the kind of engineering-driven culture that made technology an everyday part of ordinary people's lives. Yet in recent years, as the market has shifted from traditional PCs to mobile devices, HP has stumbled.

In fairness, the company is hardly alone. Many of its generational equivalents have similarly failed to adapt to the new world order, and have also had to wrestle with tumbling market share, red ink and one tortuous corporate reorg after another. But HP isn't just any company. And my own history with them - lots of coverage as an analyst, and lots of memorable moments along the way - makes me just a little sadder whenever I see a troubling headline.

Because in the end it isn't just a company or a logo. It's people. And this is a company filled with truly good people. And their impact lingers long after the logo itself fades from view.


rashbre said...

Didn't they start in a garage and become the founders of what is nowadays Silicon Valley? Incredible heritage.

Michael Manning said...

My late father mistakenly thought that the "Packard" part of the company's name was a carry forward from the ex-car maker. What comes to my mind is the tenure of Carly Fiorina and how the board clashed. I'm curious now about this company, thanks to your blog, Carmi. I wish them well.

darlin said...

I used to swear by HP, unfortunately as you've mentioned they've failed to compete with the market and today sadly I will no longer support their products due to poor quality products. It is sad to know people are losing jobs, what I am left to wonder now is did the owners of HP go after the big market and make their money in a relatively short period of time and then forget to reinvest in not only keeping up to the new technology but investing in the future of those who helped them along the way? I'm going to take a quick look online at this and see if I can find anything which may inform my curious mind.

My ever questioning mind, keeps me up later than anticipated most evenings! lol Cheers.