Zhang is expected to retain his role as ByteDance’s chairman. The executive said that his decision to step back from day-to-day operations came after months of personal reflection.
“The truth is, I lack some of the skills that make an ideal manager. I’m more interested in analyzing organizational and market principles, and leveraging these theories to further reduce management work, rather than actually managing people,” he wrote. “Similarly, I’m not very social, preferring solitary activities like being online, reading, listening to music, and contemplating what may be possible,” he added.
The leadership changes at ByteDance’s Beijing headquarters come less than a month after ByteDance named its chief financial officer Shouzi Chew, based in Singapore, as CEO of TikTok.
ByteDance has sought a lower-profile in geopolitical affairs following a tumultuous period during the Trump Administration, when the former president singled out the firm as a potential national security threat, ordering that it divest control of TikTok, and U.S. consumers’ data, to an American firm or face a ban in the U.S. A hastily assembled deal for Oracle and Walmart to take control of TikTok’s American business has since unraveled, however.
This article was originally published by The Hollywood Reporter.