Monday, October 22, 2007

Mike the headless Chicken

Pfizer Inc. Chief Executive Jeffrey Kindler's decision to scrap an unpopular drug bucked an unspoken industry rule, according to a Wall Street Journal article ("Pfizer Breaks With Norm by Scrapping Drug"). Namely, products can linger on life support as long as they pose no safety problems.

This reminds me of the story of Mike the Headless Chicken (read it here). Mike the Headless Chicken (April 1945 – March 1947; pictured above) was a Wyandotte rooster (cockerel) that lived for 18 months after its head had been cut off.

There's a parable here:

  1. Exubera could have been Pfizer's headless chicken and lived for 18 months if Kindler didn't kill it; or
  2. Pfizer is now a headless chicken until it finds another blockbuster drug.
You decide. Read my interpretation on Pharma Marketing Blog.


Anonymous said...


Thanks for picking up on my post. I think this is a wonderful idea. Perhaps we should be looking to do something not just about blacks in pharma, but people of other races.

Ordinarily, I would shy away from doing things like this. After all, "why should we highlight the contributions of one racial group over another?", some would say? However, as the recent events have shown, perhaps we need to be more proactive about showcasing talent from those "different" from the mainstream. Let's talk off-line about this. Perhaps we can do a joint-blog thing. You have my e-mail!


Anonymous said...


nice idea, its perfect. the maricle mike is a great summary. keep your work going and soon you will be greater than any person here. lol