Here's why SprintNextel's CEO should be fired- NOW

A good backgrounder for this rant would be Sprint's Big Pipe Dream, a piece that ran in TheStreet.com on Monday.
Written by Russell Shaw, Contributor

A good backgrounder for this rant would be Sprint's Big Pipe Dream, a piece that ran in TheStreet.com on Monday.

Writer Scott Moritz uses terms such as "dismal" and "repeated stumbles" to set up SprintNextel's  19-city, 4G wireless broadband intentions as a bright spot in contrast with what he- and I- term "more pressing priorities."

"But Sprint's wireless pipe dream faces some immediate challenges from its deteriorating business," Scott writes.

I believe that poor execution is the overarching issue here. Sprint's already replaced several execs, but the problems are endemic and don't seem to be getting any better.

As a result, it is time to take into account where the buck stops- and to take appropriate corrective action.

That action, I believe, should be the immediate termination of SprintNextel's incompetent chairmand and CEO, Gary Forsee

Scott adds these zingers, to which I will add mine: 

Analysts and industry insiders say the Reston, Va., telco has taken its eye off some of the more pressing priorities. The company's integration of Nextel into the Sprint organization has been poor to date, say observers.

Nextel's prized two-way walkie-talkie network was neglected and customers, including at least one federal agency, responded by dropping the service. Field sales representatives for Verizon and AT&T say Sprint has become a much smaller presence in the business services market.

In fact, the overall marketing effort seemed slightly scattershot, with different messages for different customers. Sprint has only recently decided to unify its marketing theme, changing ad agencies last week. The neglect was reflected in the numbers. Sprint posted four consecutive quarters of financial disappointment.

The company capped off that performance by getting handed a stunning decision by the federal contracting agency that it would be banned from seeking government business for 10 years.

It's not only the deprioritization of Nextel that sticks in my craw.

The merger was announced on December 15, 2004, and formally approved on August 12, 2005. That's 20 months since approval and nearly 2.5 years since first revealed.

But you know what? Check SprintNextel ads in your local paper. You'll still see a listing of Sprint-centric and Nextel-centric stores. Go to one or the other, and they are not likely to have the other's products in stock or the in-store expertise to help you with such a purchase.

The billing systems are still separate as well. I receive one bill for my Nextel cell, and after I signed up for Sprint EV-DO, I received a separate invoice. That even though the logos on the envelope were the same.

Tender mercies might be inclined to give this integration a break, but the stores and the billing really should have nothing to do with the fact that the Sprint and Nextel networks use different technologies. These are service issues, and two and a-half years should have been way long enough for these to get fixed.

Oh and did I mention Sprint's stock price has declined 27% over the last year, while, as Scott Moritz points out, AT&T is up 45% and Verizon has gained 10% during the same period?

Oh, and don't let me forget to mention that SprintNextel could'a should'a put in a bid for Vonage to broaden their services portfolio? A services portfolio weakened by their inexplicable decision to sell off their local calling services?

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