Top critical review
One person found this helpful
The Ego Has Landed
on 6 December 2015
Referring to a speech he made at a shareholder meeting, Woodford says 'My crescendo would have made Laurence Olivier proud'. You won't have to search hard for other self-aggrandising remarks - they litter the book. To be clear as to his 'whistleblower' status - Woodford never uncovered any wrongdoing personally, an underground Japanese magazine did that. He confronted the board with the articles, in emails copying partners at KPMG, and was dismissed as a result. He then began a media campaign, eagerly contacting journalists across the world, to highlight the creative accounting in play.
The first 100 pages are entertaining and worth a read - after that, the book begins to pall. You realise that there is nothing Woodford loves more than media attention. He laps up the flattery from journalists and editors, basking in their words, seemingly unaware that their coverage doesn't mean his point of view or personality is more compelling than any other - they just need to fill pages and airtime.
He thinks Japan needs to 'wake up' (he actually says that, p. 214), if only they would adopt the ways of the West. It seems that in 2011 he misread his new job title as president of Olympus to mean President of the country. After speaking to the media on an extensive scale, he naively believed he'd be welcomed back to his position on the Olympus board, so that he could continue 'saving' them. This wasn't to be.
Credit to him for taking a stand against corruption, but a far more dignified approach would have been to continue his career at another company, not on the dinner party circuit.