Before we get too excited about reports of a major shuffle among Microsoft's top ranks, let's remember one thing. Re-structurings are almost an annual sport for Microsoft. But if Bloomberg is right, and a re-org is planned, then - based on what's been happening within the last year - what's coming promises to be a unique event …
Hang on, isn't putting people who know how to make shit that works in charge rather de trop these days?
Get with the times MS! Hire a load of Management Consultants to sort your problems out.
Yes, it is a joke. MS seem to have forgotten the punchline though.
A big corporation promoting the technically literate, and what's more those from within instead of taking part in the usual "Musical Execs" game.
Colour me amazed.
Very interesting article
Much to ponder on. Changing the direction/refocusing/managerial culture of a company the size of MS is a fairly eye-crossing task and the chances of success (regardless of which company one is talking about in that kind of situation) are rarely better than 50/50. It will certainly be interesting to watch!
PS. Now cue a shit load of postings howling about Microsoft spelt with a dollar sign from the usual suspects.
PPS. Can't I please have an icon where BG has *both* halo *and* horns?
There's lot of talent in MSFT - let them shine
There's huge amounts of talent in the company but they're clearly not being allowed to shine. Consider Anders Hejlsberg, the original creator of Borland's Delphi, stolen by MSFT to build the .NET framework. This guy's got more knowledge than most of the Microsoft President's put together - it's a guy like this who should have led the WinPho7 development - he's got the creativity, the nous and the respect to have delivered something truly new + exciting.
Change the guy at the top, let the real talent shine and see what happens...
Reinforces my idea
Just looking at the mention of Elop... 2 years with MS and gotr rid of as a failure turns up as Nokia CEO (doubtless on more pay). This fits with recent other good stories - the guy who 'uink hbos' now runs boots, the ex Symbian CEO who oversaw that companies demise is CEO of another high tech, even the idea you can oversee illegal activity and become a top advisor to the prime minister...
Its amazing, my CV is in for a big rewrite tonight, no more how I did this and did that, no, I'm going to try the 'this was a failure, that a disaster... but honestly I did learn from it all!' approach.
I'll post to el -reg when I get my CEO position.
You're better off than them
Seriously, I can't imagine being in a position of trying to cover up my failures for yet another boring "exec" job and yet another failure.
What ever talent you have
You might not have the talent to run talented people, not to mention the talent of running not so talented people.
Microsoft have never innovated
Why are people always so amazed that Microsoft continue to copy other technology without innovating any of their own? That's all they've ever done. They didn't get a desktop monopoly by innovating, you know - they did it by using lots of nasty tricks which they were never properly punished for because they're so good at bribing people!
MS == Nokia == Cheap Crap
Off by one error
Microsoft needs a re-org all right, but they started too low in the management hierarchy. They really ought to clean house starting at the board of directors and work their way down from there.
Says it all, really...
Microsoft now have to come from behind...
Well, it's a company that has specialised in various forms of buggery over the years, whether legal, financial or technical.
Are we sure...?
The thing is, reading the article in a different light, that a clash of personalities or viewpoints could be seen behind a lot of these high-profile losses. They disagreed with Ballmer, they had to go. So it's highly possible that Ballmer is doing this to shape the company in his own bald-headed image - he sees himself as a Jobs, Ellison or Dell (first time around), as the sole messiah, pulling everyone into the roles he's decided for them. Of course, if he fails, it means it's all on him...
re: Of course, if he fails ...
Didn't that happen already, and we're just waiting for MS to catch up with reality? Whether the "brain drain" is just that or actually strategic pruning, it's a symptom that things are seriously wrong. They have enough cash and users to carry on for ages, but I can't help thinking it's all downhill from here.
A good coder...
...does not (necessarily) a good manager make.
That is all.
Do what Motorola just did.
Split the company into several sections and let the non-profit making entities improve or die a quiet death.
Getting away from Mr. Ballmer's "leadership" and electing a Board of Directors suited to each particular business unit is a start.
re: Split the company
The problem is that the markets that were formerly a blank cheque for MS are becoming less important, and they've yet to make significant inroads into the emerging markets. At the moment they're using the not inconsiderable residue of the old money to try to develop the next killer app, but split them up and the Windows/Server/Office divisions will slowly wither while other areas like Mobile, Bing, Live and X-Box simply won't sustain themselves in their present state.
I fear Microsoft coming from behind...
Shirley Sun did that with Java and MS just did what they always do, took the concept and simply reproduced it with their own turd flavoured secret sauce lathered on top.
Not Quite, Mr. Ballmer.........
Engineers in charge is not a good idea unless these guys represent the customer and understand intuitively what they obviously want to do. Closed computing supporting mainstream applications vs cool nested menu driven stuff for the autistic no one ever has time or aptitude to find except minority power users..
Engineers designing cool technology has always been a problem - of technology push. Most car buyers don't share mechanics skills or interests. They just want ti to go and can't switch off their fog lights because theyry don't know which button it is. What IS needed is people from an engineering background who get the problems and can extrapolate them forwards - and want to deliver what the mass of users want, the requirement often precedes the technology to deliver it. Steve Jobs does that. Most tech companies fail at it because engineering creates technology to market, not marketing creates solutions for engineers to deliver, but working symbiotically, no heirarchically.
The engineers job is to meet the need with the best available technology. e.g. I specified a fixed/mobile smartphone cloud resident solution in 1990 and asked Gassee (Apple Tech VP) when Apple expected to deliver such a device, back then there was no public network bandwidth or cloud based resources, and the computing technology had not shrunk enough. The cloud was an enterprise mainframe on leased lines. He didn't even get it and said he didn't like Swiss Army knives.. blah blah. lost the plot with Be as well. Now there is the Internet instead of X.400, MPLS (out of mainframe SNA), Flash and optical memory and mental CPU power enabling the mass access to computing and consumer commoditisation in the cloud.
A road map Isaac Asimoc laid downin a short story back in the 60s, OBTW. There's someone MS should have employed as its visionary, not some young technology de jour led techy who doesn't know what went before and can't project into the future. MS is not an innovator, its a mechanical market satisfier now run by an accountant. Can't innovate. Its semi autistic. It has a track record of innovation by acquisition (as in - "You can be bought or you can be put out of business when we buy your competitor. How lucky do you feel, punk?", not creativity, its core skills have been as a ruthless borderline monopolist with Mafia like marketing practices - look at Ballmer! He's Tony S and acts like it. MS won because they exploited a monopoly OS cash flow and control of the low level software links and mass marketed properly to the undiscerning computing masses, the competing innovators marketed to techies on excellence and got devoured by less capable but volume me too solutions acquired by MS and bundled, remember? Visionary marketing with grasp has to co-exist with the ability to apply evolving technology to old problems and create totally new but dreamed of solutions as well as re invent better solutions to old problems, not one predominate - as in Apple whose leader can do both and whose approaches' time has come.
Larry Ellison will do enterprise in the cloud. MS will slowly whither to some lesser status under Ballmer's vision by-pass. Maybe Oracle will buy it as the work station software, but they have Open Office so only need the customer base, not the software....I rest my case. Sell Microsoft. Your mileage may vary.
It doesn't matter how you rearrange the deck chairs, the Titanic still sinks.
The problem is that Windows is shite and will never be anything else. If they were to do a ground-up re-write, which is the only way to fix it, they'd end up with Unix or Linux.
You don't become CEO because you are talented
Your talent has nothing to do with it. You need to know someone, that's why it is rare you see "management" who has talent.
Steven Jobs is talented (I have no respect of him as a human being, but he is talented evil), Ballmer is not. MS needs to clean up from top.
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