Leadership by Geoff Colvin

Power Point: Worry about your people

May 5, 2009: 6:57 PM ET

"At the end of a day the performance of a company like Kraft has everything to do with the quality of the people that we have in the key roles and so I spend most of my time worrying about whether that's the case, making sure...we have the right people in the right places, that they have the resources that they need to get the job done."

-- Kraft (KFT) CEO Irene Rosenfeld in a recent interview with NPR's Marketplace. Today Kraft reported first-quarter profits were up 10% over last year. It was the one bright spot in a sea of bad quarterly earnings news from companies with top women from Fortune's Most Powerful Women list.  Avon (AVP), whose chief is Andrea Jung, and Archer Daniels Midland (ADM), led by CEO Pat Woertz, suffered steep profit drops of 36% and 98% respectively. The announcement from Disney (DIS)--where Anne Sweeney is president of the Disney-ABC Television Group--was also dismal: net income plunged 46% to $613 billion from $1.13 billion a year ago. While Rosenfeld pays lip service to the importance of people, cost cuts and price increases are credited with Kraft's standout performance this time around. --Jessica Shambora

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