Our Leadership Series: Bill Gates

Our Leadership Series: Bill Gates

Today we continue our leadership series, where we illustrate important leadership strategies and management tactics from some of the top leaders in the world, like Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, Navy Commander D. Michael Abrashoff and our top takeaways from legendary CEO Jack Welch. Our next installment takes a look at one of the most successful leaders of the 20th century: Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates. Gates saw immense potential in the future of personal computing and rode that wave to immeasurable success, creating a multi-billion dollar empire catering to people’s technology needs and amassing one of the largest fortunes on Earth. But he also set new standards for how far one could take hard work, passion and dedication. Here’s several of Gates’ leadership qualities outlined, useful for anyone looking to step up their entrepreneurial game.

Be ready to out-work everyone - Gates once described unhappy customers as one's "greatest source of learning." Even when Microsoft dominated the marketplace and turned huge revenues, Gates refused to be complacent; personally involving himself in efforts to diversify the company’s portfolio. “Don't let yourself be lulled into inaction.” he remarkedand if his annual reading lists are evident, he has not shown any signs of slowing down.

Have a vision - How often have you heard the phrase ‘think big’? It couldn’t apply any more to Gates who dreamed that every home and office would have a Windows PC and in many ways, worked to achieve that dream with very little compromise. “We always knew that we didn’t want to have a single product that was a dominant product,” he says. “We wanted to hire in more software people and have a full product line.”Microsoft’s success came from predicting what their market needed and catering, but they strayed very little from their core strength: delivering quality software that could be used everywhere.

Care about those around you - Gates’ philanthropy and humanitarian efforts are amazing for a man likely to become the world’s first trillionaire. The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation is one of the world’s leading philanthropic organizations, donating billions of dollars to causes all over the world. “As we look ahead into the next century, leaders will be those who empower others.” He says. Reflect upon that statement and how it applies to your role as a leader. Of course we don’t all have the deep pockets Bill does, but this could mean getting involved in your community, helping out the less fortunate or working to be more personable with your co-workers or employees.

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