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True Leadership – Living Outside Your Boundaries Essay

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Updated: Nov 4th, 2021

Introduction

The paper will focus on Bill Gates as an example of a true leader. Bill Gates is Chairman of Microsoft Corporation and has been ranked as the world’s wealthiest man. His achievements have been possible through exemplary leadership and tenacity. The paper shall look at these issues against the backdrop of his challenges, innovations as well as crises handled by this individual.

Abridged ethnography approach – Biography, the life, struggles, challenges, and successes of a great leader

Bill Gates was born to a school teacher (mother) and an attorney (father) in Seattle. Gates’ passion for software was eminent early in life because he started programming at the tender age of thirteen years. Later on, Gates studied at Harvard University and it was at this institution where he developed the first software component for PCs. He founded Microsoft Corporation with a long-term friend known as Paul Allen while studying at University and even made a bold move to quit his education so as to fully concentrate on this newly formed company. His actions were guided by a firm confidence in the capacity and relevance of their product in the years to come. Gates’ vision was that businesses in the entire world would embrace Personal computers and the technologies associated with them (Foo, 2006).

Microsoft has undergone drastic changes over the past three decades of its formation. For instance, the adoption of the internet as a form of both social and business connectivity affected this company tremendously. This is because more people acquired computers hence requiring Microsoft’s software and secondly because there was a need to think of new ways to meet these new consumers’ needs. Gates was able to spearhead innovative products to deal with these opportunities. However, the technology bubble was immediately followed by the technology bust and Microsoft still had to think of effective ways of remaining relevant and profitable through such a tumultuous period. Bill Gates handled this crisis relatively way as this was a change that had already been anticipated.

Gates has written several books on information technology; some of which have been listed as best sellers by the New York Times. Besides that, Bill Gates has also invested in a series of telecommunications services such as Teledesic (a broadband telecommunications service) He also formed a company known as ICOS which deals with biotechnology, and another one known as Corbis which offers digital information on the arts. Not only has this individual diversified his business interests, but he has also engaged in several charities around the world. One way in which he has achieved this is through the Gates foundation which has donated millions of dollars to education, health as well as civic issues.

Leadership through a crisis (case study) – Issues, circumstances, and outcomes of a great leader when and while addressing a great calamity such as an economic downturn

Bill Gates has done an incredible job running the Microsoft Corporation. This is seen through its growth, profitability as well as relevance in today’s business arena. The latter has been going on irrespective of the fact that the world is in an economic recession. Maintaining such a position has not been easy. First of all, Gates ensured that his company spearheaded software developments and kept abreast of changes in the software world. This implied that they always had something new to bring to the table and the strategy kept the numbers flowing (Kotter, 1999). For instance, the company introduced different versions of Office, Exchange as well as Windows. Venturing into such new product packages at a time when the economy was low required a lot of confidence as this was a risky venture. High risks brought high rewards for the company as their boldness translated into monetary gains (Senge, 2006). Gates had also created a strong support team to launch and maintain several company products and services. Time and time again, Gates has asserted that Microsoft is not where it is because of his efforts; instead, it is the efforts of a very dedicated as well as the talented group. In other words, it can be said that Gates’s ability to select a strong human resource team as well as the strength to trust and believe in them to carry out the company’s vision placed him where he is today.

Case study – leading the change of innovation and technology in a global context

In the year 1995, Bill Gates wrote a book on the role of technology in the future of businesses. After widespread use of the internet, he wrote another follow-up book on the topic. These pieces of literature become some of the most important footprints of innovation and technology in the world.

At the beginning of Microsoft’s efforts, Bill Gates had a vision that every home and every business desk would possess a personal computer. In order to achieve this, he came up with software products that would streamline such a process. All job applicants, software code lines were thoroughly scrutinized by the latter individual in order to ensure that they had the capacity to meet prevailing computer needs. Besides that, Gates also gave a lot of precedence to the research sections within his company. In other words, he treated Microsoft research as one of the most important assets in the firms. This is seen through investment in that sector and his direct efforts in that section throughout all the company’s branches (Waterman & Peters, 2009).

Conclusion

Bill Gates is a well-respected individual who has earned his place through effective methods of dealing with numerous challenges in the technological industry, his ability to embrace change and use it for the good of his company. Lastly, investment and belief in his team have led him to become one of the most revered leaders in the world.

References

  1. Foo, F. (2006). Bill Gates’ Leadership qualities ZDNET Australia.
  2. Kotter, J. (1999). Kotter on what leaders really do. Harvard: Harvard University press
  3. Senge, P. (2006). The art and practice of learning organization. New York: Jossey bass publishers
  4. Waterman, R. & Peters, T. (2009). Lessons from America’s best run companies. London: Collins
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IvyPanda. "True Leadership – Living Outside Your Boundaries." November 4, 2021. https://ivypanda.com/essays/true-leadership-living-outside-your-boundaries/.

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IvyPanda. 2021. "True Leadership – Living Outside Your Boundaries." November 4, 2021. https://ivypanda.com/essays/true-leadership-living-outside-your-boundaries/.

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IvyPanda. (2021) 'True Leadership – Living Outside Your Boundaries'. 4 November.

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