RIM is rotting from within

Observations of current, former employees paint picture of smugness and complacency

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But since they've lived most of their lives in the rural areas of Southern Ontario, and don't have any real background or even social sensibility for culture, design and such issues, they're woefully unqualified for the task of aesthetic judgement."

And this gets right to the heart of the problem:

"The company is run by a 'good ole' boy' network from Southern Ontario. Though I actually believe there can be advantages in this close-knit, trust-based social ecosystem, it is unacceptable in this day and age that a global brand should have the vast majority of its citizens derived from a section of a small province, of a small, somewhat provincial and less important country (Canada), that does not have a history of empire, or executive class with the depth or strength of character and identity as say, Sweden, or Finland. (I say this as a proud Canadian who believes that Southern Ontario businessmen are amongst the best in the world - but that no group of localites are prepared to take on such global challenges). If Apple were to be based in Wisconsin, and drew most of their talent from the state area, I'm sure Wall St. would wonder what is going on.

Not only that, Apple wouldn't be Apple. Steve Jobs could push employees at Apple because the workers knew that if they fell short, they would be replaced by another genius developer or product manager from one of the many other top tech companies in Silicon Valley. This helped keep Apple employees hungry and motivated. That dynamic wouldn't exist if Apple were based in Iowa or Wyoming because employees wouldn't fear that their replacement could walk through the door at any moment.

But people working at RIM know they already have the best gig in Waterloo, Ontario. They also know there's not a bunch of developer hotshots or product gurus waiting in the lobby to take their jobs. This is a recipe for complacency and smugness.

But that's not just me talking. Check out some of the comments about the RIM culture from employees (via Glassdoor):

"Culling thousands of worker bees fixes this quarter's problem but clearing out the morass of SVPs, VPs, Directors is probably the only way to save RIM."

"Communicate once in a while and get rid of some of the 177 millionaire executives with title of VP or higher."

"If you have made the wealth over the years, please step aside and retire."

"Management needs to be changed, new faces and new ideas. Culture needs to be changed and more interaction between different teams and groups."

"Stop bashing the features/products of your competitor with past achievement of BlackBerry.

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