11-16-2012, 08:37 PM
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Microsoft -- which Ballmer rechristened as a "devices and services company" last month -- has all the parts, analysts say, but has failed to put them together. Now Ballmer looks set to reshape the company to try to make that a reality.
"I certainly expect the org chart to look a lot different six months from now," said Brad Silverberg, who ran the Windows unit during its massive growth spurt in the 1990s. "There will be attrition from Steven's (Sinofsky's) people and Steve Ballmer will have a chance to create a more harmonious organization."
Ballmer replaced Sinofsky with two executives with a reputation for cooperation. The move marks the third time in the last few years that Ballmer has replaced a single unit head with two leaders sharing responsibilities.
More fundamental organizational shifts could be in the cards.
"A lot of things are up for grabs," said David Smith at tech research firm Gartner. "How the management is structured -- there could be more changes."
No room for an empire builder
Sinofsky, a 23-year Microsoft veteran, built up a walled empire around his Windows unit.
His hard-charging but methodical style, which took on the name "Sinofskyization," alienated other groups in the company, especially the Office unit, the other financial pillar of Microsoft's success.
"Steven is a brilliant guy who made tremendous contributions to Microsoft," said Silverberg. "But he was also a polarizing guy, and the antibodies ultimately caught up with him."
The decision not to share the latest internal test versions of Windows 8 and keep the Surface tablet a secret until just before its announcement especially upset the Office group, which insiders say accounts for the lack of a fully featured Office suite on the Surface RT tablet.
Last edited by fjtorres; 11-16-2012 at 08:41 PM.