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Ballmer's Reason For Letting Go of Windows Boss Revealed

By - Source: CNET | B 56 comments

Microsoft CEO felt the former president of Windows division became too divisive.

Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer is said to have let go of Steven Sinofsky, former president of Microsoft's Windows and Windows Live division, as he was too divisive, according to Cnet.

A Microsoft executive familiar with the senior management stressed that there wasn't a single event that led to Sinofsky's departure after the launch of Windows 8. Instead, it's said that the relationship between Ballmer and Sinofsky deteriorated as the development on the firm's latest operating system progressed.

Sources suggest the two executives came to a number of disagreements in the past months. Although Ballmer wanted Sinofsky to exit the software giant, Microsoft stressed that the decision was mutual.

Apparently, the biggest reason for Ballmer letting go of Sinofsky is his concern of the former employee not working well with fellow executives from other groups.

"Ballmer is on this big kick to get different pieces of the company working together and Sinofsky had his middle finger extended," said a former Microsoft executive.

Sources familiar with discussions to the naming of Sinofsky to manage the Windows division stated that it was an area of "concern" for both Ballmer and Chairman/co-founder Bill Gates. "Bill and Steve both knew Steven's flaws," said one former senior leader. However, the pair were willing to dismiss their worries as he fixed the problems within the Windows group after the launch of Windows Vista.

According to one former senior executive, Sinofsky had threatened to quit his position more than once due to strategic decisions not going his way. "They bet on Steven and they kept betting bigger and bigger," the ex-employee claimed.

Top Microsoft executives who clashed with Sinofsky and then lost left the firm such as the likes of former Chief Software Architect Ray Ozzie and former Server and Tools Division President Bob Muglia.

Ballmer's memo regarding Sinofsky's departure saw the CEO stating that in order for Microsoft to continue to be successful, "it is imperative that we continue to drive alignment across all Microsoft teams, and have more integrated and rapid development cycles for our offerings." Steven Sinofsky also sent his own memo to all Microsoft employees.

 

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Top Comments
  • 27 Hide
    _Cubase_ , November 14, 2012 8:32 PM
    I'm no Mac lover, in fact I am the opposite. But here is what frustrates me about Mircosoft:

    They have so much talent, resources and innovative potential, but they seem to LOVE f**king things up!

    Apple, or douche-bag republic as I like to call them, can nail a TV campaign, can nail a product launch, they can nail your frikken balls to the wall and you'd buy 3 of their products whilst hanging upside down from your sack. Yet, Microsoft seem to hear the crowd chanting "we want spaghetti!" and seem to think "wow, I think we should give them rice!"

    So over it! It's frustrating as hell!
  • 25 Hide
    Anonymous , November 14, 2012 7:25 PM
    FYI he was super against Metro and the removal of the start bar. Ballmer wanted the OS to be dumbed down and more "Mac like"
  • 25 Hide
    lpedraja2002 , November 14, 2012 7:32 PM
    The man who fixed Vista and had Windows 7 under his credentials according to other info I read is a huge loss for Microsoft considering that they now need him the most to fix the awful fragmentation that exists on Windows 8 between its Metro and Desktop interaction.
Other Comments
  • 25 Hide
    Anonymous , November 14, 2012 7:25 PM
    FYI he was super against Metro and the removal of the start bar. Ballmer wanted the OS to be dumbed down and more "Mac like"
  • 25 Hide
    lpedraja2002 , November 14, 2012 7:32 PM
    The man who fixed Vista and had Windows 7 under his credentials according to other info I read is a huge loss for Microsoft considering that they now need him the most to fix the awful fragmentation that exists on Windows 8 between its Metro and Desktop interaction.
  • 7 Hide
    vertigo_2000 , November 14, 2012 7:34 PM
    ^^^^^ Link?
  • 15 Hide
    Onus , November 14, 2012 7:36 PM
    I wonder if Sinofsky would return if Ballmer got the axe...sounds like that would be a better outcome for Windows.
  • 6 Hide
    WyomingKnott , November 14, 2012 7:38 PM
    Quote:
    icrosoft CEO Steve Ballmer is said to have let go of Steven Sinofsky, former president of Microsoft's Windows and Windows Live division, as he was too divisive

    Was the wordplay on division/divisive unintentional? If he's president of division, he should be divisive.
  • -2 Hide
    nforce4max , November 14, 2012 7:42 PM
    All I can hear is the pounding and a nail in the coffin.
  • 21 Hide
    svdb , November 14, 2012 7:54 PM
    He entered MS as a programmer and for years they kept promoting him all the way up to the top and only noticed recently he "didn't work well with others"? What a load of crap...
  • 1 Hide
    lamorpa , November 14, 2012 7:56 PM
    Well at least he got the fool Ray Ozzie out. The guy's claim to fame was riding Lotus 123 into the ground and then jumping ship on his Groove Networks employees leaving them with nothing.
  • 8 Hide
    jacobdrj , November 14, 2012 8:09 PM
    From this, I gather that Sinofsky was still in the mindset of independent Microsoft Business Groups required by the US Government Oversight that started with the loss of the Anti-Trust case for embedded IE in Windows. Since this Government Oversight has been lifted, the idea was to push Microsoft to become integrated top to bottom full team ahead, and Sinofsky's vision clashed with that... He took Windows 7 in a bubble, and made it awesome by taking the best parts of Vista and incorporating it into a lean mean OS machine... But Windows 8 should have been all about a fully integrated experience between phone, tablet, desktop and more. It does not appear like this was a success...
  • 2 Hide
    freggo , November 14, 2012 8:16 PM
    m217866666FYI he was super against Metro and the removal of the start bar. Ballmer wanted the OS to be dumbed down and more "Mac like"


    That's exactly what I was thinking first.
    Boos has one idea, division chief a different one.
    If both are the Type 'A' personality (and bosses usually are) you have
    a problem. And we all know who is going to win that every time.

    That's the Golden Rule of business, who, who has the Gold, rules :) 
  • 21 Hide
    Anonymous , November 14, 2012 8:25 PM
    Sounds like Sinofsky didn't want to see Microsoft make the same mistake that Ubuntu did with its unity interface. He was adamant about it because he knew he was right. Now Microsoft is going to suffer.

    Just another example of what happens when stupid has power.
  • 3 Hide
    nforce4max , November 14, 2012 8:27 PM
    JimmySDSounds like Sinofsky didn't want to see Microsoft make the same mistake that Ubuntu did with its unity interface. He was adamant about it because he knew he was right. Now Microsoft is going to suffer.Just another example of what happens when stupid has power.


    Indeed, Microsoft like many these days is a house built on sand and come a storm only to wash it away.
  • -4 Hide
    back_by_demand , November 14, 2012 8:28 PM
    Surely the thing that us the end user wants is a single cohesive system where everything works with everything else - a document created on Surface RT, syncs with skydrive, opens on my PC, edits it and syncs with Skydrive again, open it on my phone - if anyone was for being less integrated and wanting division then they should go because it is not what is in the customers best interests
    ...
    Not entirely sure of the legitimacy of this story as the source is "a former Microsoft executive" and "Sources familiar with discussions" but if there is a grain of truth to this and Sinofski was responsible for the departures of Ray Ozzie and Bob Muglia then let's hope that if Sinofski has gone they are free to rejoin and keep doing great things
    ...
    I want an integrated system that works, I don't care who delivers it and no one man is above the product
  • 12 Hide
    ddpruitt , November 14, 2012 8:28 PM
    Sounds like he was let go because he wasn't a Lemming like all the rest and actually stood up to Ballmer's dumb decision's. Guess the biggest sign of him being ousted is that PC's, Tablets, and Phones aren't " too divisive" at all.
  • 27 Hide
    _Cubase_ , November 14, 2012 8:32 PM
    I'm no Mac lover, in fact I am the opposite. But here is what frustrates me about Mircosoft:

    They have so much talent, resources and innovative potential, but they seem to LOVE f**king things up!

    Apple, or douche-bag republic as I like to call them, can nail a TV campaign, can nail a product launch, they can nail your frikken balls to the wall and you'd buy 3 of their products whilst hanging upside down from your sack. Yet, Microsoft seem to hear the crowd chanting "we want spaghetti!" and seem to think "wow, I think we should give them rice!"

    So over it! It's frustrating as hell!
  • 4 Hide
    tpi2007 , November 14, 2012 8:42 PM
    m217866666FYI he was super against Metro and the removal of the start bar. Ballmer wanted the OS to be dumbed down and more "Mac like"



    Do you have inside information to back it up or is that your feeling ? I'm asking this because Steven Sinofsky's words on his letter to all Microsoft employees don't necessarily imply that, much the contrary, really:

    Quote:
    The Windows team, in partnerships across all of Microsoft and our industry, just completed products and services introducing a new era of Windows computing. It is an incredible experience to be part of a generational change in a unique product like Windows, one accomplished with an undeniable elegance.


  • 1 Hide
    Anonymous , November 14, 2012 8:48 PM
    Nice title. You've got nothing new.
  • 4 Hide
    bison88 , November 14, 2012 9:29 PM
    Steve Ballmer needed to be canned along time ago. With him at the helm Microsoft is never going to break out of the mold that they are currently stuck in. He's a business man, always was, he never had the leadership skills needed to run Microsoft in the first place. He's the equivalent of Eric Schmidt with Google, except Google's co-founders realized the company was getting unnecessary negative attention from a corporate jock who understood the business world but not the technology and passion that built the company to begin with.
  • 6 Hide
    killerclick , November 14, 2012 9:31 PM
    back_by_demandI want an integrated system that works, I don't care who delivers it and no one man is above the product


    Looks like you want vendor lock-in, so when they finally do something you really hate, you'll just have to swallow it.

    I on the other hand want my data available on every device I care to use, instead of being stuck in Apple's or Microsoft's walled garden.
  • 2 Hide
    Anonymous , November 14, 2012 9:46 PM
    Give me a PC with a Type 1 hyporvisor, and I'll choose the OS or multiple of OSs to run on my computer!
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