The Wall Street Journal recently ran an article that is creating some (literal) buzz about corporate heads.
According to the WSJ, a new study shows that baldness actually is an advantage in the business world — it creates the perception of dominance, masculinity and can make age harder to pin down.
Don’t believe those are good things? Just look at Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) CEO Jeffrey Bezos. His bare head might not be the envy of Wall Street, but his booming stock sure is.
The perception isn’t just good news for the baldies, though; it’s also a simple (and cost-efficient) solution for companies that need a new direction. With just a pair of clippers, these six struggling companies can give their leaders makeovers for success:
Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook
Marky Mark and his pride and joy Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) are two of the most famous names on this list thanks to the movie The Social Network — and the fact that just about everyone has a profile, from high schoolers to Grandma.
Unfortunately, they also are infamous on Wall Street thanks to Facebook’s not-so-successful IPO earlier this year, and the nearly 50% loss the stock has suffered since.
Zuck has been vocal about his plans to get things back on track recently, but you know what they say: Bald speaks louder than words.
Meg Whitman, Hewlett-Packard
So the study was a little gender-focused, only discussing the impact of men being bald. But at this point, Hewlett-Packard (NYSE:HPQ) can use all the help it can get.
Meg Whitman has made it a year with Hewlett-Packard, but the company’s fortunes have far from turned around. Whitman even had to plead for patience recently, much to the disappointment of HPQ investors.
So forget a new tablet, smartphone or cloud computing; let’s start with a haircut, and maybe we can finally stop Hewlett-Packard’s revolving door of CEOs for good.
Ron Johnson, J.C. Penney
Enough with remodeling your stores, Ron — just remodel yourself!
Johnson gave his best song and dance, but J.C. Penney (NYSE:JCP) customers still didn’t believe him when he claimed they didn’t need sales. Unfortunately, nature — and a comb-over — already was set against him.
The store is giving out free haircuts to kids in an attempt to fuel a turnaround — why not have Johnson plop down in the barber’s stool and take one for the stock?
Michael Jeffries, Abercrombie & Fitch
Michael Jeffries’ spiky blond ‘do might be in tune with the style of Abercrombie & Fitch‘s (NYSE:ANF) torn jeans and scantily clad models, but both seem so five years ago.
In a profile in Salon, Jeffries was asked why he dyed his hair and replied: “Dude, I’m not an old fart who wears his jeans up at his shoulders.”
Had he only shaved his head, he could’ve responded to a similar question with “Dude, ’cause our stock is, like, totally killin’ it.”
Thorsten Heins, Research in Motion
Research In Motion‘s (NASDAQ:RIMM) BlackBerry technology is out of date — but it’s still light-years ahead of Thorsten Heins’ cut.
Sure, the head honchos at Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) and Samsung are doing great with a full head of hair, but beggars can’t be choosers.
The best thing Heins could do for his company is inspire a new generation of slick gadgets — and what better way to do that than go sleek and aerodynamic yourself?
Angie Hicks, Angie’s List
OK, Angie Hicks isn’t actually the CEO of Angie’s List (NASDAQ:ANGI), but she is the founder (duh), chief marketing officer and the upbeat face of the company.
In fact, I’m fairly sure of two things: That you’ve seen her lovely smile on your TV … and that her commercial would be much more memorable if she donned the Mr. Clean look.
The company has been public for around a year and has seen its stock shed 35% of its value in that time. Angie’s List is a great idea — it just needs a little bald branding.
As of this writing, Alyssa Oursler did not hold a position in any of the aforementioned securities.