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Best Buy Debacle Offers Lessons in Crisis Management

Jaclyn Jaeger | May 30, 2012

When Best Buy CEO Brian Dunn resigned suddenly in April over allegations of inappropriate personal conduct, it reminded many in Corporate America of the resignation of Mark Hurd from Hewlett-Packard, an episode widely considered to have been poorly handled by H-P's board of directors.

Yet now that the dust has settled on Best Buy's CEO crisis, it's looking more like the board got it right in this instance. Some even say its serves as a case study in how to handle a crisis.

What made the situation at Best Buy so difficult is that Dunn resigned before the completion of an independent investigation into allegations of the inappropriate relationship. In situations like Best Buy's the board has to weigh the need to conduct a full investigation that is fair to all involved with the need to provide shareholders and the public with the facts and a transparent process.

Compliance officers are often caught in the middle. Taking part in an investigation of the CEO is...

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