Register now for free access to - this week only.

Missing Stefan Jacoby

PARIS -- The news that Stefan Jacoby suffered a mild stroke last week provided a somber reminder that life doesn't always respect our plans. I heard about the Volvo CEO's troubles on Monday while preparing materials for an interview we had planned for today at the Paris auto show.

I will miss speaking with Jacoby because he's always well-informed and he's a straight-talker. He proved this during our first chat, which came two years ago at Paris, as he was able to provide concise, complete answers on two tough topics in just 5 minutes.

At the 2011 Detroit auto show, he was able to provide a full, detailed summary of Volvo's ambitions for the next decade for Europe, China and the United States in less than 30 minutes. The only other CEO I know with this type of talent for communication is Renault-Nissan boss Carlos Ghosn.

The last time Jacoby and I met, which was just three months ago, he gave an inspired speech to the 2012 Automotive News Europe Rising Stars in which he provided the next-generation CEOs, CFOs and board members the following tips:

  1. Be flexible because the side roads lead to the most interesting places
  2. Take risks because fear of failure can be a road block to success
  3. Live for today and don't worry about tomorrow because if you do a good job the future will take care of itself
  4. Find a work-life balance so that your job is stimulating and challenging but it is not the only focus.

That night in June, Jacoby said that he continued to struggle with No. 4 on his list, but he vowed to never stop trying. His body sent him a clear message that the his work-life balance needed to be addressed immediately.

The good news is that Jacoby is a fighter and he's already well on the road to recovery. In a statement this week, the 54-year-old German said he is focused on resting and exercising so that he can get back to work as soon as possible.

Everyone at Automotive News Europe wishes him a quick and full recovery, and we look forward to meeting up with him again very soon.

ATTENTION COMMENTERS: Automotive News has monitored a significant increase in the number of personal attacks and abusive comments on our site. We encourage our readers to voice their opinions and argue their points. We expect disagreement. We do not expect our readers to turn on each other. We will be aggressively deleting all comments that personally attack another poster, or an article author, even if the comment is otherwise a well-argued observation. If we see repeated behavior, we will ban the commenter. Please help us maintain a civil level of discourse.

Email Newsletters
  • General newsletters
  • (Weekdays)
  • (Mondays)
  • (As needed)
  • Video newscasts
  • (Weekdays)
  • (Weekdays)
  • (Saturdays)
  • Special interest newsletters
  • (Thursdays)
  • (Tuesdays)
  • (Monthly)
  • (Monthly)
  • (Wednesdays)
  • (Bimonthly)
  • Special reports
  • (As needed)
  • (As needed)
  • Communication preferences
  • You can unsubscribe at any time through links in these emails. For more information, see our Privacy Policy.