Hoodie gate: Facebook CEO's attire a sign of 'immaturity'?

Financial analyst criticizes Zuckerberg for wearing a 'hoodie' at IPO road show presentation

By , Computerworld |  Business, Facebook, Mark Zuckerberg

"He most certainly is a genius and he really has done something that no one else could do," said Pachter. "I think he is well suited to be the chief product officer, the chief user experience officer ... to decide every feature that goes in. I'm not sure he's the right guy to run a corporation and to answer to shareholders."

Zuckerberg didn't attend Facebook's presentation to financial analysts in Boston on Tuesday.

Dan Olds, an analyst at Gabriel Consulting Group, said Zuckerberg's absence from the Boston meeting shouldn't hurt the firm's IPO. The company's reputation, he said, is strong enough to sell itself.

He did suggest, though, that Zuckerberg should try to act more respectful to the people he hopes will fund his company.

"Some Wall Street types are muttering about Zuckerberg's attire being disrespectful and immature, and they could be right," he said.

"It could be taken as studied indifference, arrogance, or that he simply didn't think about what he was putting on. He was there to sell Facebook as a company and the first rule of sales is that you don't give your prospective customers any reason to be uncomfortable before you start selling them," Olds added.

Patrick Moorhead, an analyst with Moor Insights & Strategy, said that on the other hand, Zuckerberg could be getting the respect of other potential investors by not pandering to his audience.

"Zuckerberg is the 'mad scientist' of Facebook and the last thing anyone needs is him suiting up and faking it," Moorhead said. "Facebook wants to be all about being real, hip, young and cool. And suits just aren't. Zuckerberg's hoodie is about as famous as Steve Jobs's black turtleneck and blue jeans. It would be ill-advised to change for a financial roadshow."

Brad Shimmin, an analyst at CurrentAnalysis, said there's a standard uniform when it comes to the financial world. And old-school suit-and-tie types may not look so kindly on the wonder kid who balks the system and doesn't dress in a manner they think is mature and respectful.

"For better or worse, that's his decision. What matters is how investors respond to that decision," said Shimmin.

"If a police officer shows up to work in shorts and a t-shirt, she will likely risk losing the respect otherwise gained from the uniform. It is the same with the leader of a globally important brand such as Facebook. It doesn't make him any less professional or capable, except perhaps in the eyes of those he wishes to influence," Shimmin added.


Originally published on Computerworld |  Click here to read the original story.
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