Case Study, Microsoft's Downfall

8238 words 33 pages
Microsoft’s Lost Decade

Microsoft’s Lost Decade

Final Case
Final Case

Table of Contents

Introduction 2

Part 1: Critique Unity of Purpose 3 Invest in Human Resources 5 Focus 6
Visibility Management 8
Fix Causes 9
Know Your Customers 10
Know Your Competition 12
Total Quality Management 13

Part 2: Recommendations 14

References/Links 19

Appendix 20

Microsoft’s story serves as a prime example of the pitfalls of success. In this case we can analyze, critique, and make recommendations to avoid a similar disaster in the future. While they were
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Interestingly, Microsoft began this venture in the shadow of IBM, who was also getting overly confident and comfortable with its position in the industry at the time. It actually appears as though Microsoft has reenacted the problems of their former nemesis over the past decade. As time progressed for Microsoft, however, there came to be a noticeable drop off in success of the company. Steve Jobs and his exciting, strong and, most importantly, new Apple brand seemingly booted Microsoft to the curb, out of the public’s eye. It is easy to assume that Microsoft was simply outmanned by Apple, that the latter company came into the picture and took the market share away from Gates and his supposed dynasty. This, however, does not describe the true cause of the downfall suffered by Microsoft. The real cause that sent this company on the track to irrelevance was due in large part to the lack of unity in the business purpose. Microsoft was clearly not focused on development or bringing out a new product, and their new philosophy, as expressed by the most recent CEO Steve Balmer about a decade ago, was “we won’t be first to cool but we will be first to profit”. In other words, they don’t care about coming out with some cool new technology, they will wait for somebody else to do that, and then buy their way into that market. Obviously the first problem