Johnson & Johnson ($JNJ) hasn't opened CEO-to-be Alex Gorsky's door to the media. But just because he can't yet speak for himself doesn't mean that others can't talk about him. And that's what they do in a Star-Ledger profile.
Most of the people quoted in the article are J&Jers, and thus unlikely to speak ill of their newly tapped boss. So, the picture of Gorsky that emerges is weighted toward the positive: He's a strong leader, a direct communicator, a hard worker; he's comfortable wtih diversity and adept at motivating others. He's a runner. He's a West Point grad and former Army Ranger.
"He has a very direct, explicit way of communicating. It's almost a personal signature. He's very focused on real information opposed to generalities," said Michael Useem, a teacher at the Wharton School of Business, where Gorsky earned an MBA. "He showed a lot of grace under pressure," said Paolo Costa, Gorsky's former boss at Janssen Pharmaceuticals, adding, "I think he will very quickly provide a leadership that's needed." And former J&J executive David Norton told the Star-Ledger that Gorsky "understands the details as well as the importance of the big picture."
The central question--whether Gorsky will be able to polish up J&J's public image, tarnished by a long series of recalls, lawsuits and government probes--can't be answered without a reliable crystal ball, however, and so far we've been unable to purchase one. Gorsky takes over later this month, after J&J's annual meeting, when current CEO William Weldon relinquishes the title and remains chairman.
- read the Star-Ledger story