Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer Gives Emotional Goodbye Speech at Final Meeting
September 27, 2013 11:32 AM
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It was his last company meeting as CEO
CEO Steve Ballmer attended his very last company meeting as leader of the Redmond, Washington-based company, giving an
speech and his usual energetic dancing.
Ballmer took the stage at Seattle's KeyArena in front of about 13,000 Microsoft employees to give one last performance as CEO. He came onstage while "Can't Hold Us" by Macklemore and Ryan Lewis played over the speakers.
He gave a speech about an hour long, with tears streaming down his face at points. He discussed his time at Microsoft, the deal with Nokia and handing the torch over to a new CEO.
"I want to say thank you…this isn't about any one person," said Ballmer. "It's about a company that's important, that's forward thinking, that's innovative.
"We will deliver the next big thing...we will change the world again."
Ballmer managed to take a few jabs at the competition as well, describing Apple as being "fashionable," Amazon as being "cheap," Google as "knowing more," but Microsoft as "doing more."
He departed the stage to Michael Jackson's "Wanna Be Startin' Somethin'," which is the song that played at Microsoft's first employee meeting in 1983. "(I've Had) The Time of My Life" by Bill Medley and Jennifer Warnes played afterward, as Ballmer sang and danced along.
"You work for the greatest company in the world, soak it in," said Ballmer before exiting the stage. "I believe in you, I believe in the mission. We've been a great company for years. We will be a great company for many more years."
Ballmer joined Microsoft on June 11, 1980 as the company's 30th employee and the first business manager hired by Microsoft Chairman and Co-Founder Bill Gates. Even though Ballmer has been a public figure for Microsoft for many years, some believe the company is in need of an executive shake-up -- including a new leader.
Ballmer announced last month that he
plans to retire
sometime over the next year. The company is currently undergoing a major
that will unify devices like Windows Phone, PC and Xbox One.
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Better the enemy you know than the enemy you don't.
9/28/2013 10:53:48 PM
I just had one of those moments when I realized that even though I wasn't keen on all of Balmer's decisions losing him might be a more drastic change for the worse than the ones we experienced after Gates stepped down.
Windows 7 is my primary platform, I love it and I know it well. It was an excellent successor to XP. Windows 8, not so much, but it sounds like they plan to fix the mistake with 8.5.
My concern is where new leadership may take us. Something far worse than Windows 8 is a terrible thought.
"It's okay. The scenarios aren't that clear. But it's good looking. [Steve Jobs] does good design, and [the iPad] is absolutely a good example of that." -- Bill Gates on the Apple iPad
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