BT’s new man dials in strongly

Tomorrow's Business

A first outing for new BT boss Philip Jansen and the early reports are this: the boy done well.

Jansen’s got an experienced corporate affairs team behind him so will have been well schooled, but it’s still him that’s got to do the talking.

What did he get right?

This is going to sound daft, but it is a) not that usual. And b) leaves a really good impression.

His master stroke? He actually answered the questions he was asked.

Now, he had some sort of script to work from for sure, because he gave some of the same answers on the conference call as he did on the call to me.

But he wasn’t tied to that script.

It doesn’t seem like much for a chief executive on £8 million a year to be able to think on his feet, but it’s amazing how many don’t, how many prefer to answer the question they wish you’d asked.

Not all of the commentary he gets tomorrow will be positive. Some will say he should have cut the dividend. But he had a coherent strategy and he explained it well. In press terms, he’s at least one-nil up.

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