Monday, September 12, 2016

Why Do Business Channels Ask former Executives about Economic Policy?

by Bill McBride on 9/12/2016 08:46:00 PM

A short rant - I always find this irritating.

If I interviewed Jack Welch (former GE CEO), I'd ask about company finance, marketing, manufacturing, product development, hiring and training and more. That would be a wonderful learning experience.

But I wouldn't ask if he could solve a three dimensional differential equation in real time on TV!

However business channel talking heads always ask about the economy and economic policy. Welch would give a more coherent answer if you asked about 3-D differential equation than economics: he would probably just say "I don't know". That should be his answer to economic questions.

Today's example is former Home Depot CEO Bernie Marcus. I'd enjoy asking Mr. Marcus about subjects he knows - how he financed the growth of Home Depot, marketing, customer service, and hiring and training. That would be fascinating.

I wouldn't ask Mr. Marcus about differential equations or economic policy.

I think CNBC and Fox News are doing a disservice to their viewers and to the interviewee. They have business experts on their shows and then ask them about topics they know nothing about. Frustrating.