Satya Nadella: How Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella got the top job

How Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella got the top jobHow Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella got the top jobShannon Tellis It’s not enough to have a consummate knowledge of the industry or a vision of what you’d do as CEO. You have to really want it. Or at least that’s the advice Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella was given when the position opened in 2013. | ET Bureau | Jan 15, 2019, 03:46PM IST

It’s not enough to have a consummate knowledge of the industry or a vision of what you’d do as CEO. You have to really want it. Or at least that’s the advice Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella was given when the position opened in 2013.

Recalling how the board searched far and wide for Steve Ballmer’s successor, Nadella said, “At one point they came to some of the internal folks, and when my turn came, they asked me, you want to be a CEO? And I said, only if you want me to be a CEO. And the feedback was, well, if you really want to be a CEO, you’ve got to really want to be a CEO.”

Though the board eventually picked Nadella, he does remember reaching out to Ballmer with the board’s advice. “I remember telling him about this and he says, yeah, it’s too late to change; you are who you are (laughs). And, you know, it worked out in the end.”