Mark Weldon walks; having full confidence of the Board isn’t enough

MediaWorks chief executive Mark Weldon has resigned. […]

Mr Weldon said in a statement this morning that he notified the MediaWorks board of his resignation last night, saying “the personal cost is now too high to continue in this role”.

MediaWorks, the parent company of TV3 and RadioLive, said the board had accepted Mr Weldon’s resignation and respected his decision.

Reaction to the controversial boss’s resignation flooded social media. Former weekend newsreader Carolyn Robinson tweeted: “Goodbye Weldon.

Don’t trip on the ruins you created as you leave.” Former Campbell Live producer Pip Keane posted: “It’s definitely a karma day.”

A string of long-time TV3 personalities have left under Mr Weldon’s watch.

John Campbell, Hamish McKay, Paula Penfold – wife of Barry’s co-presenter Mike McRoberts – and the rest of the 3D investigative journalism team, including Melanie Reid, Phil Vine, Eugene Bingham and Sarah Hall have all left or announced their departures.

MediaWorks chairman Rod McGeoch said: “The board is very grateful for Mark’s success in driving change through the entire organisation and under his leadership MediaWorks has truly become an integrated company. Mark has agreed to assist the board on strategic projects and we would like to thank him for his efforts and successes.”

“The board has complete confidence that the company will continue its momentum and growth. I would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone at MediaWorks for their dedication and support of the company. I also want to assure the company and its stakeholders that the strategy initiated by Mark will continue.”

The company will immediately start a search for a CEO. In the interim, MediaWorks’ CFO, David Chalmers will act as CEO.

On Monday MediaWorks said Barry’s exit from TV3 had not dented Mr Weldon’s position and that the board of directors had given him “full support” after a key meeting.

Mr McGeoch dismissed speculation about Mr Weldon’s position following the meeting, saying every mainstream media company in the world was undergoing significant change.

He said the changes involved major restructuring which included a focus on reducing costs. Part of that was reviewing the profitability of shows.

“MediaWorks is no different. We have to change and we are changing. We have a clear strategy for this, led by our CEO.” He said there was “full support for the CEO executing that strategy”.

It was well known that Weldon was on “stress leave”.  Ultimately, he wasn’t up to the job of gutting an organisation full of people who don’t take direction from management, and run things their own way.

It will be interesting to see who is willing to fill Weldon’s “dead man’s shoes”.  It will have to be someone who thrives on conflict because the Board is still united in seeing through the restructuring, which includes the departure of people who think they are bigger than the brand.


– NZ Herald

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As much at home writing editorials as being the subject of them, Cam has won awards, including the Canon Media Award for his work on the Len Brown/Bevan Chuang story. When he’s not creating the news, he tends to be in it, with protagonists using the courts, media and social media to deliver financial as well as death threats.

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