4-Apr-02
Microsoft President Gets Ax

Hailed for bringing a "more mature management style" on the way in, Rick Belluzzo is now said to have "never fully adapted to the Microsoft culture".

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Microsoft has announced the resignation, effective May 1, of President and Chief Operating Officer Rick Belluzzo, although he will remain with the company through September to ensure a smooth transition. Mr. Belluzzo, formerly CEO of Silicon Graphics, explained that he is resigning to start his own company and be a CEO again.

Microsoft has not announced a replacement, but instead indicates that seven operating groups will now each report directly to CEO Steve Balmer.

Analysis

Belluzzo "never fully adapted to the Microsoft culture"? Perhaps he retained some nagging remnants of ethics, and a little discomfort at violating laws. He also probably never learned to scream and dance on stage like Microsoft chief foghorn Steve Balmer.

While The Register was more literal, the Wall Street Journal and the Los Angeles Times correctly interpreted the corporate double-speak and reported the departure as "not entirely voluntary". Corporate presidents are never fired - they "resign to pursue personal interests".

Essentially, Balmer has eliminated all parental guidance between himself and the guys running the business units. Any remaining pretense of a "kinder, gentler Microsoft" should have evaporate completely within a few weeks.

Standard procedures are being followed to make this look more orderly for the stock market, so it's been announced that Belluzzo will stay on until September "to assure a smooth transition". Yeah, right - his desk has probably already been cleaned out, his login accounts deactivated and his photo posted at the guard booth. Smooth transitions aren't exactly part of Microsoft's culture either.

- Andrew Grygus

Links

  • The Register - Microsoft President Belluzzo Resigns
  • eWeek - Microsoft Prez, Belluzzo, to Leave Company
  • InfoWorld - Analyst: Belluzzo exit 'no great loss'

©:Andrew Grygus - Automation Access - www.aaxnet.com - aax@aaxnet.com
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