US media interview Nadella: 4 and a half years Microsoft CEOs wonderful journey

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 US media interview Nadella: 4 and a half years Microsoft CEOs wonderful journey


Microsoft plans to continue to drive revenue growth through cloud computing services. Its IntelligentCloud department includes Azure, which is competing fiercely with Amazons cloud computing service AWS. Nadella discussed the future of Microsoft and its cloud computing services, competitors Google and Amazon, AI, and the changes that are worth looking at this year at the Build conference. The following is a summary of the interview: Ford: its been 7 years since I first interviewed you. Nadella: Yes, that was before my Microsoft CEO. Ford: you always say, I know this is not turning, but refreshing, and there is still a lot of work to do. But Microsofts stock has recently approached the highest point in history. When can you say, with a team effort, we have completed a turn (or refresh), and now its time to go in the next mountain. Nadella: I think this is the basic attitude we must take. Frankly speaking, any company that needs to continue to update itself needs to do so. ? Ford: is the first stage finished? You can say, Hey, Ive been doing CEO for 4 years, and now we have completed this part of the work and done well. Nadella: Yes, I think its very important for me to start with two things, namely, a clear sense of purpose and identity, and how to express a sense of purpose and identity in a changing world. I think we have done very well in the past four and a half years. But I tell you, I only think of what we shall do next, because this sense of purpose must remain unchanged. Our culture allows us to move on and remain unchanged. But there will be many changes in the world, and we will have to change with it. In fact, we need to act before the world changes. Ford: speaking of the sense of purpose, youve talked a lot of interesting things recently. You say, this is what I want my legacy, that anyone who joins our company can connect their personal passion and use Microsoft as a platform to achieve it. Whats your personal hobby? When I asked myself, why do I stay in Microsoft? What makes me work for Microsoft day after day? The reason is that it has created a platform for me to relate to things I love. This is something I personally like very much. Microsoft gave me an excellent opportunity to connect this passion with real work and see its impact on the world. I think this is right for 100 thousand people. They include the local community, the country we live in, the economy, education, health departments and so on. The wide impact of Microsoft is the opportunity it creates for every employee. But I think what defines me is curiosity, enthusiasm for new ideas and the ability to turn them into influence. Ford: you are sure to launch something new at the developer conference. I am recalling our dialogue 4 years ago on why Microsoft was leading in the field of mobile and cloud computing. That sounds right, and AI has made significant progress. But what are the necessary factors to stand out in the AI field and become a large participant? How many super players are there, why is this so important? Nadella: first of all, the world we have entered, in fact, is in a huge transformation, especially what I call Intelligent Cloud Computing and intelligent edge computing. Computational structures are becoming more and more dispersed and more common. Now that you have more powerful computing power, you can put the power of GPU on the car, even more powerful than the data center a few years ago. We have just announced the AzureSphere microcontrollers. Each microcontroller can be placed in your fridge and rig. They will have powerful computing power, and each factory will have millions of sensors. Ford: your neighbor Amazon is buying smart doorbell and video camera to recognize faces. Nadella: thats right. In fact, the products we released at the Build conference include high pass cameras, which can run images in containers. This means that in the wild, you can start identifying objects or DJI UAVs. This technology will be able to run AzureEdge so that you can detect any faults in the tubing. So computing is becoming ubiquitous, which means that data will be generated in large numbers. Once you have a lot of data, what you do is to use AI to collect, process, and analyze them, and to use all the computer capabilities to give yourself, any application to predict, analyze, and automate. Nadella: I think there is definitely a scale effect in our business. If you understand Azure, you may know that we have 50 data centers, more than anyone else in this field. We also have the ability to use AzureStack anywhere you want, provided that you have the ability to embed things like AzureSphere. So you have to build a scale around a certain capability, AI or cloud computing. I think the next stage is not to create a large number of participants, but who can truly transform their size advantage into a huge impact, when each enterprise is becoming a AI enterprise. Because I think we are celebrating the AI breakthrough at this stage, and I do so myself. I am proud of Microsofts achievements in human voice or target recognition, machine greeting and understanding. These are all major breakthroughs. But for me, what defines our business success is our ability to translate it into a set of platforms and tools that are actually commercialized. Ford: commercialization? Nadella: this means that any company can become a AI developer, such as Maersk, B hler, and any company that works with us. Because unless we reach this goal, at least for Microsofts business model and our identity, its not enough to say that we have a world record in voice recognition. I have to transfer it to millet so that they can make Machine Translation equipment or voice translation equipment for every Chinese traveler. This is a breakthrough and we are concerned. Ford: at the developer conference last fall, Amazon also launched a number of AI related tools. Will we use these development tools to develop AI and build a Wall Garden? Nadella: in fact, if you look at Amazon and us, if theres a real thing in common between us, thats what we believe in our personal digital assistant, whether its Alexa or Cortana. In fact, we are cooperating with each other. This is an explanation of your Wall Garden view, and I think that sometimes the fence garden strategy is practicable at some time, but not all the time is valid. ? Ford: I want to talk to you about data ethics, because I know this is also the theme of the developer conference. Have you ever thought about redesigning Microsofts business model around data? I mean, there is an idea in this industry that, as a free service exchange, you are basically allowing some companies to track you in a digital way. Yes, you have the opportunity to choose a specific browser or specific browser settings, but generally, you can use it free of charge, and we can track the target. Is it possible that this transaction is no longer valid? Nadella: thats a good question. In fact, I think we have done a lot of work at Microsoft to ensure that our business model is fundamentally consistent with our customers and is in line with their preferences. I mean, we do have some advertising support businesses, but we also have subscription services. This is true for individuals as well as for organizations. Our companys main business model is to ensure data and data derivatives (such as AI) security, and to benefit users rather than us. So we want to be a pure software company, by subscribing, to help each organization and individual get more control over their data from their data. For me, I think this is the trend of the world, and people will pay more attention to their data. Even individual consumers will realize that nothing is free. So, this is a choice. ? Ford: is there a B plan for Bing, Outlook.com and so on? Nadella: of course. In fact, we have a lot of plans, especially in the search, we are very painful to find that only advertising can drive it, which is part of the result page. We do not record these data or use them elsewhere. We do not have any directional business, and we are very aware of the choices we make to ensure that the products we create are primarily related to user interests. Ford: in terms of cloud computing, you once said, although it may be too late to enter the market now. There are at least two big players in the market, Amazon and Google, but we will be third. Introduce me to the new situation, the competitive situation in this field, or those three companies? Will you adjust your definition? Nadella: capital investment is part of it. Obviously, I think Amazon and we have taken the first and second positions on the vast cloud platform. The game starts and you can see progress every quarter. Google is also in this field. Obviously, it also has a lot of money and a lot of investment. Ford: 2 billion dollars, I think they recently announced this figure? They began to show some progress. Nadella: for me, I think the most important thing at present is to gain trust. I mean, this is not just a matter of capital. For example, if you want to establish a conversation with an industrial company, a health care company, a Financial Services Company, or the CEO of a food company, I think it will come down to trust. Trust is not only technically, but on AI, privacy, security, and morality (all of which are important), it also needs to build trust in the business model so that you are fully in line with the interests of the benefit provider and the customer. Ford: Ive heard of rumors that some retailers are looking for Microsoft cooperation, because Amazon has now entered the grocery store and bought the whole food supermarket. Retailers are watching, Amazon has a good platform, but at the same time, will he become the core of the business model? Nadella: its not just Amazon. You must bear in mind that Amazon and Google are good at manipulating transactions. Thats not to say that Google is more friendly to retailers. They have a good bilateral market and can benefit from subsidizing one side. Besides, by the way, the advertising business is also very fashionable. This is the second price auction. I have never seen a business model with more demand, and the price there is even higher. Therefore, I think any client who subsidized his own tax increases should think about what will happen in the long run. So I think building trust in a long-term business model is very important. ? ? Ford: how do you organize your employees to get customers trust in the best way? Are there any different ways of selling and messaging? What do you tell people? Nadella: in fact, this is how you keep every part of your organization consistent, starting with your sense of purpose and mission. Thats why when I say that we want to make people around the world stronger, it should be more than empty talk. Our success is based on the success of our customers. The second is to create a business model and create a culture. We now have a new role in this field called customer success. It is to ensure that customers can do what they want to do and use technology to influence their business. ? Ford: how do you measure customer success? Nadella: just by the customers comments on you. The net recommendation value (NPS) is a good choice. ? Ford: I think we have confirmed that in the past four years, you have predicted many things correctly. So, do you have the wrong place? Nadella: I think the most surprising thing about me is diversity, and even when I started taking over Microsoft CEO four years ago, I thought it was about customers, but it was actually about our employees and shareholders. But the problem is more than that. It also concerns every community we run and serve, and many users must coordinate with your interests. That might be a place where Ive learned a lot. Ford: if I read your words correctly, can you think that Starbucks has learned from it. Someone in your store, you have made a specific brand commitment, they do not buy anything, but they will have a great impact on your brand awareness. Nadella: thats true. By the way, Im a member of Starbuckss board. I think Starbucks, Kevin Johnson (KevinJohnson) and his team team have responded to a brands commitment, and their expectations are very good. I think they set the standard. In fact, its not about perfection, but about whether it can learn from what is happening and improve and change the culture of the organization. Thats what were going to do. Ford: what is that that makes you understand? You say there is a time when you are caught off guard, and the multicomponent nature of your work. When did you realize that? Nadella: one of my most important moments is that we received a letter from the American Association for the blind. The letter said, Hey, look, you have to do something with the software, do it very seriously, especially those who have vision defects. In fact, before I became chief executive, I had been advocating barrier free work. But it suddenly occurred to me that this could not be a check box. This requires us to integrate into the mainstream, and universal design needs to be a culture and deeply rooted in everything we do. This is a remarkable achievement. For me, it is also the most exciting effect of AI, whether its gaze Technology (for ALS patients) or machine reading technology (for people with dyslexia). This is a kind of awakening for us. This is the moment of our realization. This letter from the lobby group has set the alarm bell for me. Ford: I think you can now expect more letters from the advocacy group. Is there anything special about it? ??? Nadella: Yes, so one thing we did last year was called AIforEarth. The idea is not only to build technology and progress in the AI field, but to use it to support the organizations research, in which case AI can help cope with climate change or establish early warning systems for the village card virus. So now we have to deal with the accessibility of AI in the same way. Therefore, we will invest $25 million to support research institutions and other non-profit organizations to help them use AI technology to solve some accessibility challenges. Nadella: as a matter of fact, we just returned from Hannover, where the largest industrial conference was held. Microsoft used to go to Hannover. We have an embedded business. But now this has become a major display platform for us, and if you look at the number of announcements about Azure and AzureEdge, they are finding that they are becoming a built-in function of every modern chemical plant. I mean, one of the things I talked about in the last quarters earnings is turning to material handling. Literally, they are handling materials in a specific modern chemical plant (digital plant), using UAVs to optimize the tray route and optimize the efficiency of the whole supply chain. Or Buhler, in fact, most of the corn in the world goes through their machines. It turns out that if you really want to protect the world food production related to corn, you want to find out any toxin as soon as possible, and they use computer vision to strengthen the machines ability. Ford: theyve done that. Nadella: we are working with them. So for me, it will be a killer application that I can translate what I think AI promises, or our cloud computing and its Edge, into these industrial applications. It makes me excited. Ford: there is tension between large technology companies, not only in Seattle, but also in Silicon Valley. But in Seattle, it was proposed to impose a poll tax on large companies. Basically, it costs 500 dollars for every employee in a large company to pay for homeless tramps. However, this may not be about the service of the tramps, perhaps the escalation of tensions between large technology companies, which have raised the standards and made the local cost of life more expensive. Its good for some people, but not for everyone. We need them to give back to society. Is this your opinion on this question? Will a big technology company like Microsoft make things better and push the debate forward? Nadella: first of all, I think we should have the right dialogue. Because, in a sense, I have always thought that if only a few multinational companies were the only companies that were bigger and more profitable than other economies, it would not show the same vitality when hiring employees. Generally speaking, the increase of social inequality will lead to unstable homes. This is not a good thing for any liberal democratic country. Ford: is it a good idea to levy a tax? Is this the solution? Nadella: I dont know whether taxation is a good idea, because you have to make sure that it brings benefits, but all taxes can bring unexpected consequences to economic growth. So you have to think about it carefully. This is a system. But, even so, every community should think about how to ensure that the people of the community can grow up there in all parts of the economy, where they can live. If there is a so-called middle class and housing expenditure is rising, there is no solution. Our own employees do not want to live in a community with no diversity in the long run, so we must take responsibility in every community. Not just in Seattle, not in Redmond, but in every country where we operate. Thats why I think we are a multinational company. Every time I go to the capital, city, or community of any country, I always ask myself: how many people around Microsoft live, how many partners, how many people they hire, how much their average wages are, and where is the opportunity? And without that, I dont think Microsoft will continue to flourish. ??? Ford: then what are the different ways to get different solutions? I remember when I lived in Silicon Valley 15 years ago, I had a conversation with the leading group of Silicon Valley. The cost of living there is really expensive, and its hard to recruit workers to Silicon Valley. But since then, house prices have risen by at least 2.5 times. Nadella: I think there are some solutions to this problem. I think we should first collect data and find ways to reduce housing costs, so that we will not have a runaway housing crisis. I think some of these problems - whether its out of control medical costs, educational costs, or housing costs - are the challenges that I think must be faced, and market forces should try to solve these problems. Ford: now an American trade delegation is trying to solve some problems in China. So what is the best situation? Nadella: in my opinion, the world pattern in the next 10 years, 20 years or even 30 years will be defined by these two countries (China and the United States). This will create more interdependent relationships, not less. This is good for both countries and is good for the world as well. So I hope that in any capital (or any place), any dialogue is for breakthroughs. I think there are some legitimate issues to be discussed, but you need to come up with solutions because interdependence may be conducive to world economic growth and stability. Ford: did you see the third track? Nadella: I think anything that produces uncertainty is bad. Who does it serve in the end? I think we have increasingly recognized that globalization or free trade has not created equitable growth opportunities around the world, as envisaged. This is what I think is being discussed. This means that you must return to the true principles of free trade and ensure that they are actually implemented fairly. Ford: I want to talk about the topics we discussed before, gender diversity and Microsofts female employees. About 1 months ago, the Seattle Times reported on the culture of Microsoft, saying, Microsoft culture is still male dominated, and there are all the sexism that can be seen everywhere, and the change is slow. Do you think its fair? Nadella: for me and the leadership team, this is the first problem, because in a sense, the change is really slow, but we are working hard every day, making progress every day. This is where I am responsible for myself. In fact, it starts with culture, and my leadership team and I spend a lot of time ensuring that we have inclusive culture every day. At every meeting, we can ensure that all the different groups (gender and race) we have are able to participate. Second, it can not just be written, it must be measured. For example, my own salary and the remuneration of the leadership team are now linked to a set of indicators. We must make progress in every years work. So I think you should study this question, whether it is in culture or in truly promoting diversity and inclusiveness. This is a focus for us. We are not satisfied with what we have at the moment. Ford: is this a new thing, linking salary to diversity measurement? I remember that Brian Cozzec, Intels first executive officer (BrianKrzanich), is doing some work to achieve diversity. So if electrical engineers account for 35% of women, thats our goal. The reason is not 50% but 35%, because the proportion in the past was once called quotas. We are in a diversified environment. How does it affect us? Nadella: I think, first of all, we must say: do not regard this situation as quotas, which is actually a necessary condition for business success. I mean, think about what a pluralistic team can do in a multicomponent world. Back to the question you asked me, what surprises you? to my surprise, wow, as a company, we have to serve many users and their interests, and their unsatisfied and clear needs. So every product team, sales team and marketing team need rich diversity. So for me, having diversity representatives reflects that the world we want to serve is the best thing we can do for long-term business. This is the motivation that motivates us. Even in this field, there are still some indicators of progress. For example, take women executives as an example. Over the past 18 months, the number of vice presidents of Microsoft Corp has increased by 50%. This is wonderful. Is that enough? Absolutely not. But is it going in the right direction? Yes, I think it isu3002 Ford: what book are you reading now? Nadella: I am reading a book, TheMultipleLiteraciesofLeadership. This is a very interesting book, in a sense, this is my current rational pursuit. You must take account of the complexity of things, the ambiguity of existence, and the uncertainties that exist in the world. You need to be able to translate it into understanding and express it clearly. You cant perform well in everything, even as a leader. (small) source: NetEase science and technology report editor: Hou Wei Cheng _NT4124 So for me, having diversity representatives reflects that the world we want to serve is the best thing we can do for long-term business. This is the motivation that motivates us. Even in this field, there are still some indicators of progress. For example, take women executives as an example. Over the past 18 months, the number of vice presidents of Microsoft Corp has increased by 50%. This is wonderful. Is that enough? Absolutely not. But is it going in the right direction? Yes, I think it isu3002 Ford: what book are you reading now? Nadella: I am reading a book, TheMultipleLiteraciesofLeadership. This is a very interesting book, in a sense, this is my current rational pursuit. You must take account of the complexity of things, the ambiguity of existence, and the uncertainties that exist in the world. You need to be able to translate it into understanding and express it clearly. You cant perform well in everything, even as a leader. (small)