Since Marissa Mayer took over as CEO of Yahoo in July, the business world has sat in awe of the 37-year-old for somehow commanding both the corporate boardroom and the nursery. How hard must it be to give birth to and raise your first child while running a Fortune 500 company?
Prepare to feel very inadequate: Mayer doesn't understand what all the fuss is about.
"The baby's been way easier than everyone made it out to be," Mayer told Fortune's Pattie Sellers in her first public interview since becoming Yahoo's chief. "I think I've been really lucky."
Mayer, who gave birth to baby Macallister in September, says he's been a well-behaved tot thus far.
Over the summer, Mayer said in another interview that she planned to take only a week or two away from the office for maternity leave and that she'd continue working during those days that most everyone else would consider to be time off. True to her word (and then some), Mayer was back at the office after a fortnight, and she had lured a Google vice president, Henrique De Castro, to join her at Yahoo as the company's new COO.
Impressive. So her day job as CEO must be grueling, right?
"The thing that surprised me and really puzzled me is that the job is really fun," she said during her interview with Fortune. "Yahoo is a really fun place to work."
Sigh. Now we just feel lazy and unaccomplished.
Indeed, the people who run tech companies receive the inordinate about of attention they do for their seemingly superhuman ability to get things done. How on earth, one might wonder, did Mark Zuckerberg or Bill Gates start their companies when they were just kids in college?
After running Yahoo for only four months, Mayer still has to prove she's worthy of that level of adulation, despite her four-armed juggling act with work and family. (And the fact that Yahoo's stock has been slowly gaining ground since Mayer implemented a buyback strategy in October.) Her plan for earning it and making Yahoo thrive -- just like the long-term plans laid out by top brass at Facebook and Microsoft -- is mobile.
"We have a terrific set of assets for the web. They're all the things that people like to do on the mobile phones," said Mayer of her strategy, per her sit-down with Fortune. Just don't except a big push from Yahoo Maps into the mobile space from Mayer, who toward the end of her career at Google oversaw Google Maps. "They're very expensive and very hard to do well," she said of maps. "Just look at Apple." (Burn!)