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Satya Nadella to Microsoft troops: Be productive and focus. Oh and we’re not selling Xbox

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In a massive, jargon-heavy internal memo clearly tailored for an audience outside Microsoft(s msft), CEO Satya Nadella tells employees to focus on teh company’s already-stated mobile-first, cloud-first core services and values.

Read it for yourself, but my immediate impression was that Xbox is here to stay — despite calls from certain quarters on Wall Street for the company to unload it. For the record, Nadella isn’t having it.

Stating that Microsoft’s “first-party devices will light up digital work and life” Nadella added:

I also want to share some additional thoughts on Xbox and its importance to Microsoft. As a large company, I think it’s critical to define the core, but it’s important to make smart choices on other businesses in which we can have fundamental impact and success. The single biggest digital life category, measured in both time and money spent, in a mobile-first world is gaming. We are fortunate to have Xbox in our family to go after this opportunity with unique and bold innovation.


Satya Nadella microsoft employees

There was no explicit mention of layoffs — which many expect Microsoft to announce some time in the next month in the wake of its completed acquisition of Nokia and 25,000 new employees. But some insiders called attention to this snippet from Nadella’s email:

Today I want to synthesize the strategic direction and massive opportunity I’ve been discussing for the past few months and the fundamental cultural changes required to deliver on it. On July 22, we’ll announce our earnings results for the past quarter and I’ll say more then on what we are doing in FY15 to focus on our core. Over the course of July, the Senior Leadership Team and I will share more on the engineering and organization changes we believe are needed. Then, at MGX and //oneweek, we’ll come together to build on all of this, learn from each other and put our ideas into action.

The emphasis is mine. But insiders wrote in to say that confirms their impression that major layoffs are on the way.

This story was updated at 9:31 a.m. PST with more on Nadella’s comments about possible org changes.

6 Responses to “Satya Nadella to Microsoft troops: Be productive and focus. Oh and we’re not selling Xbox”

  1. Rangaprasad

    I think what Satya Nadella 3100 word long email essay is trying to tell is…


    OK. It is time to move on.

    Our Industry merely worships innovation and we suck at it. Look at the world around us. It is filled with billions of people, and their mobile devices connected to the cloud. Our previous strategy – Devices and Services doesn’t help us here. What helps is to think of us as a Productivity and Platform Company for enabling the billions with their mobile devices connected to the cloud.

    Lets focus on their productivity and reinvent it. Lets us focus on their work and life experiences and blend it. Let us use the cloud to connect the dots between their work and life experiences. And let us use our Operating Systems (and a few devices) to deliver these blended experiences.

    And yes. Our company will change big time to make this happen. We will get flatter, nimbler and certainly smaller.

    A bunch of philosophers have said it in the past and I will say it too. If we don’t embrace the future now, we will have no future.


  2. BenjaminGilead

    I hope they do away the strategy of smearing it’s competitor by black propaganda and hiring Burson-Marsteller to do this for them.