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Bill Gates

Management style workaholic

Although Gates was long known as a boy wonder in the computer and business worlds, his management style was anything but immature. As was noted in a BBC News article, Gates has come to be known for his aggressive business tactics and confrontational style of management (January 26, 2004). Although he was considered a charismatic leader within his own company, he was also extremely tough he fired Microsofts first company president after only 11 months on the job.An intense businessman who typically put in 16 hour days and took only two three day vacations in the first five years after establishing the corporation, Gates was demanding and strong willed about implementing his vision. Coworkers, clients, and industry analysts also remarked, however, that he did not surround himself with yes sayers but was more than willing to change his mind if someone convinced him of a better alternative. Analysts also observed that one of the keys to Gatess success was his ability to focus on the fundamentals of the business while keeping office politics or his own ego from getting in the way. Most of what I do is leading, Gates once said in Electronic Business. Managing applies to the people who work directly for me (August 15, 1988).

Gates was known from the beginning of his career as the epitome of a hard driving businessman respected by his allies and feared by his competitors. It was his vision that guided Microsofts immense success. In addition, Gates had an uncanny ability to tackle both the managerial and technical sides of Microsofts operations. He was especially noted for his success as a marketing strategist who priced his products for the mass market rather than computer specialists. In 1999 the Journal of Business Strategy listed Gates among a handful of people who had the greatest influence on business strategy over the last century.Gates also had his fair share of critics. In addition to accusations of predatory and possibly illegal business practices, some analysts remarked that Gates did not really foster in house product innovation but tended to focus his attention instead on blocking advances by other companies.

On the other hand, supporters of Gatess managerial style and business acumen pointed out that Microsoft continued to prosper even in the midst of the 2002 information technology slump, growing at 20 percent each quarter and posting a phenomenal 35 percent after tax profit margin. Despite all his financial success, however, Gates remained a fiscal conservative. He was renowned for his penny pinching traveling habits, demanding that his schedule be filled for the entire day when he was on the road promoting his company.

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