Friday, August 23rd 2013

Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer to Retire Within 12 Months

Microsoft Corp. today announced that Chief Executive Officer Steve Ballmer has decided to retire as CEO within the next 12 months, upon the completion of a process to choose his successor. In the meantime, Ballmer will continue as CEO and will lead Microsoft through the next steps of its transformation to a devices and services company that empowers people for the activities they value most.

"There is never a perfect time for this type of transition, but now is the right time," Ballmer said. "We have embarked on a new strategy with a new organization and we have an amazing Senior Leadership Team. My original thoughts on timing would have had my retirement happen in the middle of our company's transformation to a devices and services company. We need a CEO who will be here longer term for this new direction."

The Board of Directors has appointed a special committee to direct the process. This committee is chaired by John Thompson, the board's lead independent director, and includes Chairman of the Board Bill Gates, Chairman of the Audit Committee Chuck Noski and Chairman of the Compensation Committee Steve Luczo. The special committee is working with Heidrick & Struggles International Inc., a leading executive recruiting firm, and will consider both external and internal candidates.

"The board is committed to the effective transformation of Microsoft to a successful devices and services company," Thompson said. "As this work continues, we are focused on selecting a new CEO to work with the company's senior leadership team to chart the company's course and execute on it in a highly competitive industry."

"As a member of the succession planning committee, I'll work closely with the other members of the board to identify a great new CEO," said Gates. "We're fortunate to have Steve in his role until the new CEO assumes these duties."
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74 Comments on Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer to Retire Within 12 Months

#1
Wrigleyvillain
PTFO or GTFO
newtekie1 said:
WHS 2011 isn't being killed, they've already said they are going to support it into 2016.
Yes but no new iterations, I thought, e.g. 2012 or 2013...

Edit: Also Technet going bye bye was some BS but to a degree that was ruined by people who took unfair and underhanded advantage of a pretty generous program.
Posted on Reply
#2
rtwjunkie
PC Gaming Enthusiast
Solidstate89 said:
It's only a "debacle" for those who used WHS which was less than 1% of all Windows users.
So, an extremely involved and vocal minority, composed in large part of the technet community that MS used to rely on, and that got them bad press that they had to spend time doing PR work on, isn't a debacle? When you take it as the first of a series of arrogant missteps, it certainly is. It doesn't matter if you don't like it or I like it. What it did in context was show Ballmer in a true light....one who decides what you will receive as a product, not what you want.
Posted on Reply
#3
Easy Rhino
Linux Advocate
microsoft's focus should be on office applications. they need to gear the OS towards office users and continue to bolster their entire office suite making it easier for people to collaborate across multiple mediums. instead they try and adopt a business model like apple which is consumer driven. any MBA dropout could see where that was going to go wrong.
Posted on Reply
#4
rtwjunkie
PC Gaming Enthusiast
Wrigleyvillain said:
Originally Posted by newtekie1
WHS 2011 isn't being killed, they've already said they are going to support it into 2016.

Yes but no new iterations, I thought, e.g. 2012 or 2013...
Yes, you are both right. What exists now in its cheapest form is Server Essentials, at 5 times the cost, putting it out of reach of average home user. My point was thaey announced the EOL (of 2016) a mere year after release, and the manner in which they did it sounded to any casual reader who might have considered WHS 2011 that it was just plain cancelled. So sales dropped way off after that. It was just a complete mismangement of the program and the PR all the way around.

Anyway, bottom line is he's going, which really can only be good for MS. Even if it is only to improve their Public Relations image on what they do, it will be good for them, and ultimately for the consumers, I think.
Posted on Reply
#5
Ravenas
xvi said:
My girlfriend picked up her Surface Pro on day one and has loved it ever since.

I think the issue with the Surface was with the RT version running what looks like Win8 x86, but since it's on an ARM processor, people get confused as to why it can't run "normal" apps. The iPad has the same issue (I see people trying to use it like a laptop all the time), but it's easier for the average user to understand that it doesn't run normal desktop applications because the UI looks different. While this is technically the user's fault for not bothering to educate themselves, it's also Microsoft's fault for not remembering the golden rule of marketing: People are generally stupid.

I think if Microsoft had done a better job distinguishing the RT from the Pro, it wouldn't have done much better, but it would have ended up with better publicity.

Getting back to the article, Microsoft has survived without Gates and I expect this transition to go without a hitch.
There are no software or hardware issues with the Surface Pro. The issue with the Surface Pro is the price. I have one myself but it's hard to convince someone to fork up $899 or $999 for a tablet.
Posted on Reply
#6
TheMailMan78
Big Member
I highly doubt Mr. Ballmer "got fired". He's stepping down after over a decade as CEO of one of the largest tech companies in the world. Windows 8 works fine and saying the Surface is to much just makes you sound butt hurt you cannot afford it. There is a lot of hate for MS on this forum after YEARS of them supporting an OS you have gotten THOUSANDS of hours out of. All I can hear are babies crying anymore.
Posted on Reply
#7
Solidstate89
rtwjunkie said:
So, an extremely involved and vocal minority, composed in large part of the technet community that MS used to rely on, and that got them bad press that they had to spend time doing PR work on, isn't a debacle? When you take it as the first of a series of arrogant missteps, it certainly is. It doesn't matter if you don't like it or I like it. What it did in context was show Ballmer in a true light....one who decides what you will receive as a product, not what you want.
It only got them bad press in your incredibly small circle. That's like saying Microsoft abandoning PlaysForSure was a huge debacle when almost nobody used it or cared about it. It's not a debacle because I don't care. The reason it isn't a debacle is because 99% of the people associated with, working for, or using Microsoft products didn't and still don't care. I'd wager most have never even heard of it. It wasn't a PR nightmare for Microsoft because the public didn't even bat an eye over it.

If they ever stop developing Windows Server for Enterprise, then you'll see a debacle.
Posted on Reply
#8
Easy Rhino
Linux Advocate
themailman78 said:
i highly doubt mr. Ballmer "got fired". He's stepping down after over a decade as ceo of one of the largest tech companies in the world. Windows 8 works fine and saying the surface is to much just makes you sound butt hurt you cannot afford it. There is a lot of hate for ms on this forum after years of them supporting an os you have gotten thousands of hours out of. All i can hear are babies crying anymore.
QQ

edit: damn, it won't let me capitalize those Qs.

edit 2: yay!
Posted on Reply
#9
xvi
Microsoft has made mistakes before and we still love them. This isn't Apple. Microsoft won't fall apart without Ballmer.

Easy Rhino said:
qq

edit: damn, it won't let me capitalize those Qs.
It might now that you've added that edit.
Posted on Reply
#10
rtwjunkie
PC Gaming Enthusiast
QUOTE from Solidstate89: "The reason it isn't a debacle is because 99% of the people associated with, working for, or using Microsoft products didn't and still don't care. I'd wager most have never even heard of it. It wasn't a PR nightmare for Microsoft because the public didn't even bat an eye over it."

So please, go ahead and define for all of us, would you, just how many people comprises "the public." I'd like to know, because what it basically sounds like is just because it isn't something YOU used or heard of, it doesn't matter.

But anytime a company loses the trust of the business community AND a small home user community (remember, both elements were developed in isolation and under-resourced), and both products ended up needing MS to expend funds on fixing some of the bad press and the programs. When looked at in the LARGER context, it displays a PATTERN by Mr. Ballmer.

I'm not bashing MS or it's products, just the leader who took major missteps.
Posted on Reply
#11
erocker
I don't know the guy, but best of luck to him in his (I'm sure) very "cushy" retirement.
Posted on Reply
#12
BigMack70
Good. He's not been a good CEO.

This gives me a sliver of hope for Windows 9.
Posted on Reply
#13
Wrigleyvillain
PTFO or GTFO
rtwjunkie said:
So please, go ahead and define for all of us, would you, just how many people comprises "the public." I'd like to know, because what it basically sounds like is just because it isn't something YOU used or heard of, it doesn't matter.

But anytime a company loses the trust of the business community AND a small home user community (remember, both elements were developed in isolation and under-resourced), and both products ended up needing MS to expend funds on fixing some of the bad press and the programs. When looked at in the LARGER context, it displays a PATTERN by Mr. Ballmer.

I'm not bashing MS or it's products, just the leader who took major missteps.
I didn't post what you quoted. Solidstate did. Please fix.
Posted on Reply
#14
rtwjunkie
PC Gaming Enthusiast
Wrigleyvillain said:
I didn't post what you quoted. Solidstate did. Please fix.
Fixing now. Apologies sir. All I did was hit the quote on his posting, sounds like a website issue.

EDIT: All fixed!
Posted on Reply
#15
Easy Rhino
Linux Advocate
erocker said:
I don't know the guy, but best of luck to him in his (I'm sure) very "cushy" retirement.
When they announced his retirement the stock shot up enough to give him a $1 billion stake in the company.
Posted on Reply
#16
Solidstate89
rtwjunkie said:
QUOTE from Solidstate89: "The reason it isn't a debacle is because 99% of the people associated with, working for, or using Microsoft products didn't and still don't care. I'd wager most have never even heard of it. It wasn't a PR nightmare for Microsoft because the public didn't even bat an eye over it."

So please, go ahead and define for all of us, would you, just how many people comprises "the public." I'd like to know, because what it basically sounds like is just because it isn't something YOU used or heard of, it doesn't matter.

But anytime a company loses the trust of the business community AND a small home user community (remember, both elements were developed in isolation and under-resourced), and both products ended up needing MS to expend funds on fixing some of the bad press and the programs. When looked at in the LARGER context, it displays a PATTERN by Mr. Ballmer.

I'm not bashing MS or it's products, just the leader who took major missteps.
The public being everyone. Also, you once again just gloss over what I wrote by saying shit like this; "I'd like to know, because what it basically sounds like is just because it isn't something YOU used or heard of, it doesn't matter."

I had heard of what happened even if I didn't use it. I even stated as much in my post you only partially quoted. It still doesn't count as a debacle. They didn't have stock price drop because of it. Companies didn't lose sales because of it. There was no financial downside at all for it and beyond those using WHS - no one cared or even knew about what happened. But if you ask any layperson on the street about the current state of Microsoft, they'll mention many missteps and products they don't like and I bet you money that they won't mention WHS. Because they won't know the product even existed.
Posted on Reply
#17
rtwjunkie
PC Gaming Enthusiast
Solidstate89 said:
Because they won't know the product even existed.
Yes, this is true for many. Why? For those following it, they know why. The project was underfunded on the development, mismanaged by having the same group develop both servers simultaneously (home and business), and then the advertising for it was axed by Ballmer.

And you sir, decided to gloss over why I am bringing it up. By itself, yes, it is inconsequential. If you look at it in context, it shows a PATTERN by Ballmer. He has been the deciding authority on most of the missteps, perceived or real.
Posted on Reply
#18
Scrizz
YESSSSSSSSSSSS!!!
LEAVE!!!!

GTFO!!!!! :toast:
Posted on Reply
#19
Deadlyraver
Bye! Can't wait to see you retire twice!
Posted on Reply
#20
Dos101
BigMack70 said:
Good. He's not been a good CEO.

This gives me a sliver of hope for Windows 9.
Profits increased over his tenure, and the company expanded from being just a software company to a services and devices company. How is that being a bad CEO again?
Posted on Reply
#22
MxPhenom 216
Corsair Fanboy
TheMailMan78 said:
I highly doubt Mr. Ballmer "got fired". He's stepping down after over a decade as CEO of one of the largest tech companies in the world. Windows 8 works fine and saying the Surface is to much just makes you sound butt hurt you cannot afford it. There is a lot of hate for MS on this forum after YEARS of them supporting an OS you have gotten THOUSANDS of hours out of. All I can hear are babies crying anymore.
No, Ballmer didn't get fired. He would have never gotten fired with Bill Gates still Chairman of the Board.

Dos101 said:
Profits increased over his tenure, and the company expanded from being just a software company to a services and devices company. How is that being a bad CEO again?
No idea, Ballmer was a decent CEO regardless of what is said about it. Most will never know how it takes to be CEO of a giant enterprise like Microsoft so not to many have room to talk. As a CEO of a company that exists for the money, and the fact that profits increases pretty consistently during the 13 years he was CEO, pretty much shows that he wasn't a bad CEO, but it may have not been the best.
Posted on Reply
#23
Mathragh
Haha, reading threads like these is just incredible. So much hate and badmouthing someone who's obviously been one of the most succesfull people and ceo's of all time imho. 99.999% of you would've probably done a lot worse.

Ah well, I hope they carry on in the same direction, without letting the vocal minority ruin their strategies too much. One very tightly syncronized version of windows for all devices would rock.
Posted on Reply
#25
MikeMurphy
Biggest problem with surface wasn't the product, it was the price.

Windows Phone 8 strategy is fine.

Desktop strategy is not fine.
Posted on Reply
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