For over 10 years, the WWE has been run with the same power structure.
The day-to-day operations of the individual shows are run by general managers while a mysterious board of directors hovers above them ready to enact random acts of interference.
When this system was initially set in place, the board were rarely seen or heard from. These all-powerful figures only revealed their existence when it was time to move a general manager on from their position of authority or to stop an injustice that was being performed by someone massively over-reaching from their position of power.
Now, interference on behalf of the board seems to happen on a month-to-month basis.
First Triple H, then John Laurinaitis and now Vince McMahon have interfered in situations before any real good or evil has been done by a general manager. Therefore, potentially interesting personalities are only given short-term reigns in power, and the only enduring authority figures are bland and unoriginal.
It would appear that the WWE has backed itself into a position whereby it has to change the power structure if it is going to run long, authority-based storylines again.
Here are five possible scenarios that would allow the WWE to have a different power structure.
The easiest way to force widespread changes within the corporate atmosphere that has been established in the WWE is for the company to go through a takeover.
This would mean new boss characters with all the power that the original general managers had. More radical changes could also be made if desired, as new owners means new objectives.
If nothing else, this would produce a new set of faces for people to campaign against rather than a puppet general manager and the faceless board.
Returning the McMahons to television would only require them to repurchase the company—or more likely, reveal that they were behind the takeover in the first place—and everything would be restored.
Breaking down the rather robotic "business must come first" attitude of the board is another option in changing up the power structure.
One way to corrupt the board would be to install a secret society within the foundations of the WWE. This could allow certain figures—from general managers to wrestlers—to get away with far more than others and create a natural injustice within the very fabric of the company.
This would make the WWE Universe far more unpredictable and could lead to some truly shocking moments if booked correctly.
Such a storyline may have a limited shelf life, requiring a return to the status quo of the current system afterwards. However, even after that return to normality, it could never be certain that every element of the society was gone.
Putting power back into the hands of one person is another way that the authority issue could be resolved very quickly. The easiest way to achieve this is for Mr. McMahon to officially step down as chairman and hand the reigns to his daughter Stephanie.
It could then be revealed the Stephanie has been putting her people on the board for years, allowing her to dismiss the general managers entirely and take a hands-on approach like her father did before her.
She would then be the omnipotent power of the WWE Universe, and her word would be law. This would offer a very different WWE to the one we have today.
If the WWE wished to reintroduce competition back to the brands—or just create two all-powerful forces within the company—then the company could do another handover angle where both McMahon children get 50 percent of the business each.
This time, the board of directors’ power would be negated by the split loyalties amongst its members. General managers could be employed to run the shows for the siblings, but there would always be the knowledge that either McMahon could interfere, like the gods from Greek mythology.
This last option does not feature the monumental change suggested in the other slides, but it may be the most practical, and the most likely to improve things for the better.
The advantage of renegotiating the role of the day-to-day authority figure is that the WWE Universe can continue without major upheaval. Despite this the chance to start doing big storylines with manipulative bosses—that aren’t immediately neutered by board interference—becomes possible again.
A perfect scenario would consist of the WWE signing up a legend—or two if the company insisted on maintaining the farce of Raw and Smackdown being separate—to fulfill the general manager role. Then the WWE would announce that as a part of the deal, the general manager will have new exacting powers over the talent.
From this point on, the general manager could once again be a source of intrigue, terror or incompetence, without the shadow of the board being ever present, and that leads to a whole world of possibilities.