Presence of Gates, Ballmer on Microsoft’s board repelling potential CEO candidates

“Ford CEO Alan Mulally flirted with Microsoft for longer than previously known before driving away,” Mike Ramsey, Joann S. Lublin and Shira Ovide report for The Wall Street Journal. “Mulally on Tuesday ended months of speculation by saying he won’t leave Ford for Microsoft. But the Ford CEO had been telling people inside Ford for weeks that he wouldn’t be the next Microsoft CEO, people familiar with those discussions said.”

“Other people familiar with Mulally’s thinking said the Ford executive soured on the Microsoft job in part because of what he perceived to be leaks from Microsoft about the search process,” Ramsey, Lublin and Ovide report. “The people familiar with Mulally’s thinking said the Ford CEO also had concerns about the dynamics of Microsoft’s board, including whether Ballmer and Chairman Bill Gates remained directors.”

Ramsey, Lublin and Ovide report, “Other executives who have spoken to Microsoft directors about the CEO post have expressed similar concerns, people familiar with the matter have said.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Image (1) 050923_gates_ballmer.jpg for post 19299Whatever it takes to prompt The Flop™ next one out of the clown car is okay with us.

Monkey Boy and The Ol’ Thief should definitely stay on Microsoft’s oh-so-effective BoD.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Readers “Fred Mertz” and “Edward W.” for the heads up.]

Related article:
Microsoft close to naming CEO – January 8, 2014


    1. “Sorry, Bill, but you hired me to do this job. You need to leave and let me do it.”

      Really not hard, imo.

      Doing the job itself, however, is a monumental task. I’d love to see MS die, but not with me at the helm, so I would be leery of it regardless of who is on the board looking over my shoulder.

      1. I am surprised that such a high profile CEO like you took the time to comment on a site such as this. Obviously, you must be one of the people under consideration for the job. You make it sound so easy.

  1. They should definitely stay on the BoD. I really like that strategy, I like it a lot. I like our simian like Uncle Fester, sweaty Monkey Boy Clown. Between his social skills and looks, he exemplifies Microsoft like no other. Steve, please don’t go!

  2. I can’t imagine any competent CEO leaving a good job just to do battle with Gates/Balmer at the first crisis. Microsoft’s leadership is in crisis, and the new CEO needs a free hand to change the corporate structure to make it work. An interesting dynamic is in play. This will be fun to watch.

  3. …the Ford CEO also had concerns about the dynamics of Microsoft’s board

    Yeah. You don’t want the old guard lording over the new guard if you have any interest in CHANGE.

    I’d also be wary of The Narcissus Effect whereby the old guard have a vested ego interest in setting up those who follow them to FAIL. ‘Oh, how we pine for the good-old-days of whatshisname. We sure wish he was still running things. *Ego stroke*Ego stroke*’ I’ve personally watched this horror of a situation perpetrated on two occasions. The two narcissists involved were best buds. Both dickheads managed to destroy their former workplaces by pulling this self-aggrandizement maneuver.

    Who they need is some clueless sucker patsy. Bwahahaha! 👿

  4. OMG having those two unvisionary talentless twits looking over your shoulder, the ones who caused the mounting failures to begging with, would be a nonstarter for any potential sane candidate. Who wants to be just a CEO representative while those two are still the power behind the throne? Microsoft can only climb out of it’s hole, if it’s to have a chance, is if these two Bozo’s hit the road Jack. And doncha come back no ‘mo.

    On the other hand having Elop as CEO and them still on the Board might work out very well – for Apple.

  5. The problem with MS is they don’t copy Apple enough. They probably need to design and make their own hardware, not just farm it out to the likes of Acer etc. Even with the shrinking PC market, they could take all the business from their oems and the world would be left with Apple and Microsoft computers. Gates and Balmer would oppose this. Good thing for Apple.

  6. Why wouldn’t you take the job. He would get a big ass pension and probably parting gifts from Ford. The go to MS for a year or 2 and get a big pile of cash just for giving it that old collage roommate try.

  7. No real surprises… Why would any potential CEO look at Microsoft as an opportunity? As long as thief Gates and monkey-man Ballmer hold a position on the board there will be no change in direction (which isn’t necessarily a bad thing).

    The mantra at Microsoft will always be Windows, Windows, Windows! While that remains the status-quo, Microsoft will only be left in the hearts of IT doofuses who refuse to walk to greener pastures!

    “We need to point this sinking ship in the right direction!”.

  8. I’d happily replace Ballmer at half his salary.

    Despite all the naysayers here, there’s a lot of potential to turn MS into a force for good. The first thing would be for MS to stop trying to make all its profitable divisions drive Windows OS sales. Windows is a tainted brand. I’d work hard to evolve the personal computer OS market into a universal Intel-optimized market where the same apps can run on OS X, Linux, or Windows with no emulation required. Based on a essentially the same rock-solid UNIX kernel, a new generation of Windows would leave behind the security mess and just be another flavor of GUI that is functionally equivalent to all the competition (not unlike how automobile companies compete). Concentrate on applications — let ’em stand on their own merits and focus on making profitable, high-quality programs instead of driving incompatibilities.

    I would also:

    1) Expand the Mac division and ensure all software titles have equivalent & ribbon-free Mac versions (i.e., make emulation of Intel software unnecessary). Compete on software capability and quality, not via intentional incompatibility.

    2) Redouble efforts on servers and enterprise. make servers and services OS-agnostic, making it easier for Linux and Macs to play. Again, make MS the best quality server tools company, and let any hardware maker connect portables seamlessly.

    3) wage nuclear war on Google, exposing in public all of Mountain View’s privacy/datamining over-reaches.

    4) do whatever it takes for Nokia to blow Android phones out of the water — which will likely mean immediately impelmenting an iOS application layer. In the long term, as I proposed for the desktop, lead the ARM-chip portable industry to embrace a common app interchange that allows use on iOS, Windows Mobile, Firefox Mobile, Blackberry 10, or whatever. Add VPN capability and BB-like security options. Retain the Nokia brand, and push the Windows Mobile brand into the background, more like just a removable “Windows inside” sticker. Refine the cheesy flat “tiles” look” into more attractive, legible icons — i.e., more like the Mac’s Dashboard but more unified in appearance. Leave the cheap junk to Android and take over the middle market behind Apple’s premium products.

    also, enhance Nokia Maps to provide the absolute best navigation and mapping experience.

    5) Backtrack as fast as possible on the Windows 8 touchsreen & desktop UI convergence. Get desktop-only Windows 9 out of the gate with a more conventional, refined, and robust desktop look, with more comprehensive security. follow that with Windows 9 Mobile, and tick-tock major deployments every other year with the same experienced development team.

    6) Form alliance with Apple, Roku, Netflix, and others to leverage cable industry for true consumer-friendly a-la-carte ad-free, subscription-free media rental and purchasing options.

    7) Demonstrate superior leadership in gaming industry, driving more parental controls, more educational titles, more Kinect development, more 3rd party hardware ecosystem, etc.

    8) Partner with Apple, Blackberry (QNX), Sony, and others to compete with the Google automotive alliance, and other areas like Airplay where interoperability is beneficial for both Apple and MS.

    9) lower licensing fees for Windows but increase requirements for hardware quality/environment/labor/etc. i.e., leave the junk market to Google and move Windows into a more premium position behind Apple. Concentrate on application profitability, not OS profit.

    10) fix retail by having less music promos and more product selection, including 3rd party stuff: make it the go-to Nokia store with the absolute best ad-free try-before-you-buy experience anywhere.

    11) streamline workforce. instead of constantly whining about not getting enough green cards, open up development centers around the planet. Re-hire all the Nokia guys who jumped ship and get them working improvements and apps for mobile.

    12) empower the Alliance for Affordable Internet to actually deliver affordable high-speed internet worldwide.

    13) aggressively kill off or open-source products that have become obsolete or are market duds: Silverlight, the Ribbon, major parts of Azure, VirtualPC, and the entire “Metro” UI look, Surface RT, etc.

    14) Continue refining and integrating business CRM/POS/etc services & packages (MS Dynamics)

    15) make Skype the de-facto video conferencing platform by making it subscription-free.

    16) fix Bing.

    17) with Apple, eBay, and leading banks, lead the development of a secure worldwide wallet & payment system to replace credit and debit cards, as well as paper coupons, etc.

    certainly much more to do to clean up the toxic management culture that Ballmer created too…

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