10 Things You Didn’t Know about Hertz CEO Kathryn V. Marinello

Kathryn V. Marinello

Kathryn V. Marinello is the CEO of Hertz Global Holdings. Primarily, people will be familiar with Hertz Global Holdings because it is the owner of the Hertz Corporation, which is one of the best-known car rental companies that can be found in the United States and beyond. As such, Fortune considers her to be one of the most powerful women in the business world. Here are 10 things that you may or may not have known about Kathryn V. Marinello:

1. Spent Some Time Studying Abroad

Marinello spent some time studying abroad at Lund University in Sweden. For those who are curious, Lund University is one of the most respected schools in said country, which is perhaps unsurprising when it has managed to make it to the present time in spite of the fact that it was founded in the 15th century. It has several hundred courses that are taught in English for the sake of international exchange students, which is one of the factors that has enabled the school to snag some names of note such as Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

2. Studied Liberal Arts at the State University of New York at Albany

With that said, Marinello actually graduated from the State University of New York at Albany with a liberal arts degree. Said school gets overshadowed to some extent by its counterparts in New York City, but it is important to note that it is a well-respected institution of higher learning in its own right, not least because of its contributions to the Capital Region as well as the rest of the state of New York.

3. Specialized in Marketing at Hofstra University

Later on, Marinello went to Hofstra University in Hempstead, NY, from which she graduated with a MBA. Generally speaking, MBA programs cover a wide range of skills because of the wide range of responsibilities that CEOs and other high-level executives can be expected to take up. However, it is interesting to note that Marinello specialized to some extent in marketing.

4. Has Been an Executive in Various Industries

There are some executives who specialize in a particular field. As a result, while they might move from company to company, they will remain within either the same industry or within a small collection of related industries. In contrast, other executives are more far-ranging when it comes to their positions, as shown by how Marinello has worked in everything from banking and business services to automotive and consumer marketing.

5. Chosen to Turn Around Hertz Global Holdings

It seems safe to say that Marinello was chosen to turn around Hertz Global Holdings, seeing as how she was successful at a similar effort for the human capital management firm called Ceridian Corporation. In this, she received backing from the famous investor Carl Icahn, who played a very important role at changing the top leadership at Hertz Global Holdings.

6. Has Launched Various Efforts to Turn Around Corporation

Under said circumstances, it should come as no surprise to learn that Marinello has made various efforts to turn around Hertz. For instance, she has been putting together a new leadership team who are presumably more in line with her plans to make Hertz reliably profitable once more. Furthermore, Marinello has been upgrading Hertz’s fleet as well as teaming up with various tech companies to look into opportunities for innovation. Something that has important consequences for Hertz’s ability to keep pace with its competitors both within and without its chosen sector.

7. Says that Carl Icahn Has Been Understanding

It is interesting to note that Marinello stated in the Fortune interview from October of 2018 that Carl Icahn has been very patient with her efforts to turn around Hertz because he understands that such efforts can’t succeed at their intended goal within a short period of time. With that said, it is amusing to note that Icahn doesn’t actually have any recommendations for her save that she should move faster, which is a statement with more than one possible interpretation. After all, car rental companies are now operating in a business environment that is expected to continue seeing significant changes for the foreseeable future, meaning that the need to adapt has become more important for them than ever before.

8. Asks Her Candidates If They Like People

One of the factors that Marinello looked for in her new leadership team was whether they actually liked people or not. Given the huge challenges for companies seeking to turn around their fortunes, it seems safe to say that she wants a team that is capable of getting everyone on board with her plans, which is needed to make the full use of the productive potential that they represent.

9. Respects General Motors CEO Mary Barra

Marinello picked up some of her leadership skills from her familiarity with General Motors CEO Mary Barra because of her position as a member of its Board of Directors. In particular, Marinello respects Barra’s leadership during the whole incident involving the ignition switches that resulted in a huge recall.

10. Sees the Leadership of Iconic Companies As a Huge Responsibility

Speaking of which, it is interesting to note that Marinello sees the leadership of iconic companies such as Hertz and General Motors as a huge responsibility. As far as she is concerned, she believes in the need to do right by her position because her choices will have a huge impact on whether Hertz will still be around in the future or not. This is connected to a common issue when it comes to corporations, which is that the interests of the corporation may or may not be aligned with the interests of the people chosen to lead them. Something that explains why executive compensation is often tied to the company’s performance, which is an example of an effort to align those two things.


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