When Meg Whitman was named CEO of HP last Sept. 22, the company was mired in one of the most tumultuous periods in its 72-year history. The questions hanging over HP when she came on board cut right to the heart of the identity HP has carved out over decades.
Customers and partners were still in shock over HP's decision to ditch the TouchPad and put its PC business up for sale. And they questioned the business acumen of ex-HP CEO Leo Apotheker, whose zealous crusade to transform HP into a software and services company led to the controversial decision to spend more than $10 billion on Autonomy.
Since taking the helm, Whitman has methodically sought to restore stability to HP. In a recent interview with CRN, edited excerpts of which follow, Whitman discusses the rationale behind the decisions she's made so far, as well as HP's tablet plans, its rivalries with Cisco and Oracle, and the future role she sees for partners.