"The Buck Stops at the CEO"

Q: What was the high point?

A: It was right after I took over as CEO. The first 60 or 90 days, the speed with which we were able to change behavior was great. It told me there were fundamentally good brands. There was a good cadre of hard-working, dedicated people. I'm not going to bash Linda. She was hot for many years. She's very charismatic. She fills a room. She's also a very hands-on manager. That's terrific -- until you become too big.

Q: What was a low point in your career?

A: I was brought in to Phar-Mor [a chain of discount drugstores]. The day I came in, all the top guys were fired. That was tough. The creditors were telling me this was unfixable. How could Phar-Mor sell at the price of Wal-Mart (WMT ) and still make money? The answer was: The

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