What Satya Nadella's Mission Statement Says About Microsoft's Future

1 - What Satya Nadella's Mission Statement Says About Microsoft's Future
2 - Digesting the New Mission Statement
3 - Emerging Markets Are Crucial to Microsoft's Future Success
4 - It's Still All About Mobile and the Cloud
5 - Are More Layoffs or Executive Shakeups Coming?
6 - The Enterprise Is the First Concern
7 - BYOD Is Part of His Plan
8 - Azure, Office 365 Are Linchpins of Microsoft's Cloud Strategy
9 - Windows Remains an Important Part of Microsoft Product Lineup
10 - Nadella Ends the Speculation: He Loves Xbox
11 - Nadella Wants Microsoft to Show Its Softer Side
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What Satya Nadella's Mission Statement Says About Microsoft's Future

by Don Reisinger

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Digesting the New Mission Statement

Satya Nadella presented a new mission statement for his company "to empower every person and every organization on the planet to achieve more." This suggests that Microsoft will continue to pursue its traditional role of providing productivity tools to its customers around the world while it focuses on a few important business sectors with the most potential for growth—with the most important sectors being mobile and cloud.

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Emerging Markets Are Crucial to Microsoft's Future Success

Nadella said he wants Microsoft to be a major player in emerging markets. The company must "care about taking things global" and touch "all corners of the planet." Throughout his statement, Nadella drove the point home that Microsoft cannot only be a company that succeeds in developed countries, but must also find a way to be successful in emerging parts of the world.

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It's Still All About Mobile and the Cloud

One thing that Nadella has not shifted his focus on is his desire to be a company focused on mobile and the cloud. He said again that Microsoft must be a mobile-first, cloud-first company, and he has made several moves in that regard to reflect that. Look for Microsoft to continue to focus on mobile and the cloud in the coming years as Nadella prepares his troops for battle in those two exceedingly important battlegrounds.

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Are More Layoffs or Executive Shakeups Coming?

Nadella seemed to hint in his email that more changes could be coming to Microsoft. Toward the end of his letter to the troops, he said the company must "make some tough choices in areas where things are not working." He added that the "behaviors" of the people within the company would inform its culture. They were interesting comments that seem to suggest that some corporate reorganization is possible and inevitably more people will leave the company.

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The Enterprise Is the First Concern

The enterprise remains Nadella's first concern. He wrote that Microsoft must "reinvent productivity and business processes" as its first order of business. He added that it must provide solutions that help make the jobs of the IT staff "better." He goes on to talk about consumers, but Nadella seems more focused than ever on the enterprise.

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BYOD Is Part of His Plan

One way Nadella will try to focus Microsoft on both the enterprise and consumers is by taking advantage of the bring-your-own-device (BYOD) trend. He noted that his company will "drive scale and usage [of its products] by appealing to 'dual-use' customers." He went on to say that he wants to help people do more when they're at work and "in the rest of their life activities with other people." In other words, Microsoft wants to be the company of choice both at home and at work.

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Azure, Office 365 Are Linchpins of Microsoft's Cloud Strategy

As noted, Nadella believes that the cloud will play an important role in his company's future. More specifically, he believes that Azure, the cloud-computing platform he's focused on building out, as well as Office 365, are critical to that effort. As times goes on, it appears increasingly likely that Azure and Office 365 will ultimately determine Microsoft's ability to make good on its cloud aspirations.

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Windows Remains an Important Part of Microsoft Product Lineup

It's significant that Nadella didn't mention Windows until several paragraphs into his message to employees. He acknowledged the importance of Windows 10, but he stopped short of giving Windows as much weight as the cloud and mobile, which shows where the company is moving in the years ahead.

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Nadella Ends the Speculation: He Loves Xbox

There has been near-constant speculation that Microsoft could end up selling the Xbox division. In his email to employees, Nadella again said that Xbox is important and added that he plans to bring together the company's Xbox Live online-gaming platform with its Xbox One console, wearable HoloLens and PCs.

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Nadella Wants Microsoft to Show Its Softer Side

Nadella's message seemed to try to project an image—the image of a company that is more open and engaged with computer users and customers than ever. Perhaps, more importantly, Nadella seemed to show a desire to just be a better company; he said his focus was to be "diverse and inclusive." It's a smart move that could pay off as companies, such as Google and Facebook, are being more closely scrutinized by the courts and regulators at home and abroad.

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