Yang, Cuban, and the Limits of Entrepreneurship


Is there any correlation between two big stories -- Jerry Yang's resignation at Yahoo!, and Mark Cuban's problems with the SEC?

Both involve technology entrepreneurs who overreached, or are alleged to have done so. Yang, by insisting that he could run the company he founded. Cuban, allegedly, for acting as if the rules did not apply to him.

It's a cliche of the industry, and of business in general, that starting a business is no guarantee of managerial competence. Yet creators often seem compelled to prove themselves as managers, or to keep taking risks long after they've reached a pinnacle of success.

Yang proved to be no match for the dealmakers and market forces he encountered while trying to save Yahoo!. Cuban, who has done a good job of managing the Dallas Mavericks, may have thought he was bigger than some musty SEC rules.

Sad chapters for two compelling figures.


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