All Change at the Top as BBC's Thompson Makes His Mark

23 June 2004

Mark Thompson's first day at the BBC looks set to be a memorable one. The new director general has wasted no time in streamlining the sixteen-member executive committee inherited en mass from predecessor Greg Dyke.

Dyke favoured an open management structure, boosting the committee's numbers and rewarding creative heads of drama, sports and factual programmes with top executive positions.

Whilst Thompson is expected to remove board status from executives such as Alan Yentob (director of drama, entertainment and children's programmes) and John Willis (director of factual and learning), a BBC spokesman insists the creative input will be maintained: "There will be other boards that allow people to get on with their day jobs, without getting involved with lots of stuff they don't need to."

Thompson will attempt to soften the blow with a morale-boosting message to staff, but the removal of almost half the executive committee to "get faster decision making" will undoubtedly ruffle a few feathers.

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