11 of History’s Biggest Corporate Blunders

aol timewarnerWhen Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer ended telecommuting at Yahoo, critics called it an “epic fail” and her “worst decision,” citing studies that working at home can increase productivity and keeps workers happy.

But the reality is, we don't know if any given corporate decision is a blunder or a stroke of counter-intuitive genius until farther down the road. If workers forced to show up at Yahoo offices end up collaborating more and creating a host of great new products that blow rival Google out of the water, today's critics will have to eat their words.

History has not been so kind to other companies, whose bold decisions turned out to be huge goofs indeed. From New Coke to a car that was pulled off the market because consumers said "it looked like it was sucking a lemon," get the inside scoop on some of the biggest business fails ever.

To see the slides in one long list, please click into the slide show and select "list view."

View Slide Show

  • Yes, but you know Coke Classic actually did use the new coke recipe right? There’s a whole story about it and I want to think it was the Money channel that had a story about it, but it’s also on snopes as well and other sites. So funny that after all that they still tricked the customers into the new recipe. I think the old recipe resides with the Mexican Coke if I’m not mistaken.

    • No; Coke Classic does not use the new Coke recipe, but it does share a key ingredient, which is why I have my own theory about how it all went down. If I am right, this was actually a brilliant move by Coca-Cola.

      Coke Classic uses corn syrup rather than cane sugar, presumably because it is tremendously cheaper to produce. It tastes enough different that it would be noticed if changed overnight. The new Coke tasted similar to Pepsi, and it was theorized that the move was to move in on Pepsi’s market. This may or may not be true, but if it was, it obviously failed.

      In the meantime, public outcry was demanding the return of the original Coke. Coca-Cola responded by simultaneously producing both new and Classic Coke, both containing corn syrup. Eventually, the new Coke disappeared and a version of the soda touted as the original remained, with a much lower production cost; and the public didn’t seem to mind.

      Again, this is only my theory, but it makes sense.