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The Big Picture: How Much Money Is a Good Leader Really Worth?
Gordon Bethune had inherited a mess. When he took the job of CEO of Continental Airlines in 1994, he was making the decision to commandeer a company that was losing nearly $55 million per month. The fifth-largest U.S. airline had way too many planes flying unprofitable routes. Its on-time performance consistently ranked last among the top 10 airlines, costing an average of $6 million per month in added expenses for misconnected bags, hotels, overtime and lost revenue due to canceled flights.