Feb. 4: He buys more books than he can finish, signs up for more online courses than he can complete and quotes Oscar Wilde.
Looks unlikely Andhra-born Satya Nadella will finish his books and courses anytime soon — now that he has to run the world’s biggest software maker called Microsoft.
“There is no better person to lead Microsoft than Satya Nadella,” said Bill Gates, the Microsoft founder who will step aside as chairman and play technology adviser to the Indian-origin CEO.
It marks an epochal change of control at the company that drove the PC revolution but is struggling to find its feet in the new arena of mobile computing. ( )
Satya has been with Microsoft for 22 years. He will now get to spend more time with Gates. “Satya’s asked me to step up, substantially increasing the time that I spend at the company,” Gates said in a video statement. “I’ll have over a third of my time available to meet with product groups.”
In Hyderabad, Satya’s father Yugandhar, a retired IAS officer, said: “He is a very studious and hard working boy and has achieved his goal.”
Much has been written about the boy who attended Hyderabad Public School in Begumpet, graduated from Manipal University and reached the US.
But the new CEO chose to introduce himself to his colleagues a few minutes after the official announcement was made today. The following is the picture that emerges from the over 1,000-word letter signed off with a “Satya”.
Today is a very humbling day for me. It reminds me of my very first day at Microsoft, 22 years ago. Like you, I had a choice about where to come to work. I came here because I believed Microsoft was the best company in the world. I saw then how clearly we empower people to do magical things with our creations and ultimately make the world a better place.
While we have seen great success, we are hungry to do more.
Our industry does not respect tradition — it only respects innovation. This is a critical time…. Make no mistake, we are headed for greater places — as technology evolves and we evolve with and ahead of it. Our job is to ensure that Microsoft thrives in a mobile and cloud-first world.
Family and hunger
Like anyone else, a lot of what I do and how I think has been shaped by my family and my overall life experiences. Many who know me say I am also defined by my curiosity and thirst for learning…. I fundamentally believe that if you are not learning new things, you stop doing great and useful things. So family, curiosity and hunger for knowledge all define me.
I am here for the same reason I think most people join Microsoft — to change the world through technology that empowers people to do amazing things. I know it can sound hyperbolic — and yet it’s true. We have done it, we’re doing it today, and we are the team that will do it again.
The decade ahead
I believe over the next decade computing will become even more ubiquitous and intelligence will become ambient. The co-evolution of software and new hardware... will intermediate and digitise — many of the things we do and experience in business, life and our world. This will be made possible by an ever-growing network of connected devices, incredible computing capacity from the cloud, insights from big data and intelligence from machine learning.
This is a software-powered world. It will better connect us…. and share our world in ways never before possible.
In our early history, our mission was about the PC on every desk and home, a goal we have mostly achieved in the developed world. Today we’re focused on a broader range of devices. While the deal is not yet complete, we will welcome to our family Nokia devices and services and the new mobile capabilities they bring us.
As we look forward, we must zero in on what Microsoft can uniquely contribute to the world. The opportunity ahead will require us to reimagine a lot of what we have done in the past for a mobile and cloud-first world.
Qi Lu (the executive vice-president at Microsoft) captured it well in a recent meeting when he said that Microsoft uniquely empowers people to “do more”. This doesn’t mean that we need to do more things, but that the work we do empowers the world to do more of what they care about — get stuff done, have fun, communicate and accomplish great things. This is the core of who we are.
To paraphrase a quote from Oscar Wilde — we need to believe in the impossible and remove the improbable.