T-Mobile CEO John Legere has been called everything from outspoken to offensive — now you can add “very American” to the list.
His managerial style may not work in Germany, the hometown of the company’s parent Deutsche Telekom, but that’s fine with upper management because Legere’s approach is working. In an interview with Re/Code during Germany’s DLD conference, Deutsche Telekom’s CEO Tim Hoettges answered several questions about Legere and his company’s stake in the U.S. subsidiary.
“His management style will never be adaptable to Germany,”Hoettges said, adding that Legere’s competitive nature, however, does sync with the company’s culture. “I like people being disruptive… I like people who are brave. He is very much fitting to our DNA, how we want to be, even if he is very American in his approach.”
Previously, Legere illustrated the cultural divide between the T-Mobile and its Deutsche Telekom, saying at the GeekWire Summit in October, that his bright magenta shirts stuck out at the company’s board meetings, where everyone else wore suits, and the “average age is about 118.”
For the remainder of the Re/Code interview, Hoettges blamed the political environment for not allowing a tie-up between T-Mobile and Sprint. It’s a sentiment expressed many times in the past, and is based on the opinion that T-Mobile will not be able to compete against AT&T and Verizon over the long haul because of the amount of capital required.
“I hope that the political environment will change at one point in time,” he said, adding that he was intrigued by the idea of T-Mobile and Sprint creating a “super-maverick” in the market.