Hit Refresh – MIcrosoft CEO Satya Nadella Says Empathy Key To Innovation

I prefer to read books on Kindle. However this time, a colleague of mine, Selvan D, who runs our content team @ DCKAP gifted me a hard copy of Hit Refresh. I grabbed it, and it is a different kind of book coming from the  CEO who is a few years into his job! I am sure writing this book also gave many insights on how to take Microsoft forward for Satya. Here are some of his observations/notes I found interesting/useful.

Many folks from India come to pursue their Master’s in the US right out of college when they are 21/22 years old. In 4 years they get married, Satya was no exception where he marries his wife, Anu.

Working in a company for 20 years means something, and it has been a meteoric rise for Satya.

A lot has been written/talked about being empathetic, and his children taught him empathy. The story about his first child is heart-rending and also makes one realize how gifted most of us are. He learns to cope up with it – juggling work, home and kids must have challenging and as he rightly mentions, Thanks to his wife, Anu.

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Though growing up in an illustrious family (his father was a Civil Servant in the Government of India which is considered prestigious), he still considers himself middle-class, and this generates much respect for his dad and mom!

His phone call to his Mom just before her death was touching.

The internal workings of Microsoft shared by Satya were helpful. He talks about the Senior Leadership Team (SLT), and this was a great learning. He was also open to working under Dr. Qi Li when Steve Balmer and Satya brought Dr. Qi Li on board.

A great team player, Satya also shares his views on Privacy / Artificial Intelligence, Quantum Computing and more. For any company, it helps to learn from Microsoft on their views / how they operate. Satya also mentions about key hires which are transformational for any company.

What was more fascinating was his openness to working with competitors and pretty much every major CEO of a Technology Company has a mention in his book.

Thanks for writing this book Satya.

His book and success @ Microsoft make us think about the smartness or I would say the super smartness of Steve Balmer, Bill Gates and the Microsoft Board for choosing Satya Nadella to run the company.

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