[ Reuters ] Jeremy Wagstaff and Se Young Lee:
What’s needed, according to Chang Sea-jin, a business professor at Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology, is strong backing for a push into software and services from Samsung Group heir apparent Jay Y. Lee.
Korea, generally speaking, is a patriarchal and hierarchical society; that culture is deeply seeded at the country’s chaebols. And because of this top-down culture someone at the top can greatly change the fortunes of a company, for better or for worse. If for example there was a Korean version of Steve Jobs at Samsung the company would have a solid future. Unfortunately there is only one Steve Jobs, but no one like Steve Jobs will become the CEO of a chaebol any time soon. Heir apparent? At a publicly traded global company? Could you imagine one of Steve Jobs’s children groomed to become heir apparent to Apple? You get to the top by getting in line and staying in line. Actually I’m wrong, unless you’re family or closely related, you don’t get to the top no matter what. And that’s the problem.