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July 11, 2014

Nadella Memo Says Little, Prompts a Lot of Talk

Microsoft CEO Relies on Buzzwords in His Message to Employees

CEO Satya Nadella takes questions from the audience at Build in San Francisco, where he spoke about developing for Windows, Microsoft’s product strategy and the company’s future.

A lot of words but not a lot said.

Microsoft-logoThat might be the best way to summarize a memo sent to Microsoft employees by CEO Satya Nadella. The lengthy memo was sent Thursday and sparked much discussion on the Internet. While the document lends some insight to what Microsoft plans in the coming years, readers must get through paragraphs of buzzwords and inspiring messages before there’s any meat.

“Our customers and society expect us to maximize the value of technology while also preserving the values that are timeless. We will create more natural human-computing interfaces that empower all individuals,” Nadella said. “We will develop and deploy secure platforms and infrastructure that enable all industries. And we will strike the right balance between using data to create intelligent, personal experiences, while maintaining security and privacy. By doing all of this, we will have the broadest impact.”

Numerous paragraphs follow this script, inspiring employees to see their jobs as ever-important in a world that changes daily. It’s interesting but there’s not much substance.

However, Nadella did touch on some interesting concepts such as how the Cortana app will continue to feature more abilities to assist users. The app will become “even more intelligent” where, one day, it will serve as an assitant “who takes notes, books meetings and understands if my question about the weather is to determine my clothes for the day or is intended to start a complex task like booking a family vacation.”

Throughout the memo, Nadella stresses the importance of Microsoft’s role in the digital world but, in addition, recognizes the people who use the myriad services and products his company is expected to deliver.

“Obsessing over our customers is everybody’s job. I’m looking to the engineering teams to build the experiences our customers love. I’m looking to the sales and marketing organizations to showcase our unique value propositions and drive customer usage first and foremost,” he said.

Regardless, the memo has sparked discussion and thoughts on Microsoft’s future but, really, Nadella has only taken the opportunity to plant some seeds and leave people waiting.

Maybe that’s the smartest thing contained in the memo, the unknown.


W. Brice McVicar is a staff writer for SiteProNews.