John Thompson, Chairman of Microsoft, shares a little of his life in the fast lane

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One thing that has been apparent since the ascent of Satya Nadella to the top of Microsoft, and that is the new commitment to the idea of ‘co-petition’. That is to say, working with the opposition towards mutually beneficial goals, instead of being locked in a never-ending scrum.

Given that Nadella is, to this date, an inexperienced CEO, what exactly propelled him to this end? John Thompson, former head of Symantec and current Chairman of the Board at Microsoft can take at least some of the credit. Since last year, Thompson has worked with Nadella to cement the position of Microsoft as it heads into an increasingly difficult future, working to ensure that these changes stick.

Talking with Business Insider, he described his role at Redmond in plain terms,

“My job at Microsoft has a unique dimension to it, which is that Satya [Nadella] is a young, first-time CEO. I’ve been a CEO of a public tech company, so I do spend time with him on what I call mentoring-like things as opposed to board-like things. I think that’s helpful for him and quite frankly it’s helpful to me because some of the things he’s doing are issues that I have to deal with at my little startup”

In addition to his role at the software giant, Thompson is currently heading a startup called Virtual Instruments, which is currently enjoying a number of significant successes. His achievements at Microsoft have been no less spectacular, making up with the likes of SalesForce was no mean feat.


In the interview he goes on to talk more about his past roles and his current position at Virtual Instruments, to read more head to the ‘VIA’ link at the bottom of the page.

Do you believe Microsoft should continue in this new direction? Let us know in the comments below.