Follow us:

Brier Dudley's blog

Brier Dudley offers a critical look at technology and business issues affecting the Northwest.

February 6, 2007 at 5:14 PM

Mini-Microsoft surfaces for a lookback

Apparently all the fumbles in the Super Bowl inspired Mini-Microsoft to share his thoughts on Vista finally shipping, and review Microsoft’s accomplishments since he began blogging in 2004.

It’s a great post, but he concludes with his usual rant about Microsoft needing to cut about half its workers.

I think he’s dreaming if he thinks that Microsoft or any other big business can prune itself to eliminate frustrating bureaucracy and underperformers.

The massive downsizing scenario is scary when you think about what it would mean to everyone else around here.

Microsoft doesn’t have a responsibility to keep the Seattle-area economy afloat. But if the company suddenly shrunk by half, it would be a crisis and create huge uncertainty for people and companies around here, especially now that clouds are forming over the housing market.

There’s also a risk that downsizing would create even more angst, nasty internal politics and paralysis at Microsoft. Ask employees what happened to the culture of Hewlett-Packard under Carly Fiorina, or closer to home, at AT&T Wireless before it was sold to Cingular in 2004. Google recruiters would be thrilled.

I wouldn’t be surprised if Steve Ballmer dials down the hiring growth, though, and maybe even cuts back now that the big products are out the door and the Windows development process is being streamlined.

Microsoft is also going to be spending heavily to lure customers to its online businesses. Would Ballmer compensate for those costs by trimming headcount?

That might be good news to Mini, but it gives me the shivers.

Comments | Topics: Microsoft

COMMENTS

No personal attacks or insults, no hate speech, no profanity. Please keep the conversation civil and help us moderate this thread by reporting any abuse. See our Commenting FAQ.



The opinions expressed in reader comments are those of the author only, and do not reflect the opinions of The Seattle Times.


The Seattle Times

The door is closed, but it's not locked.

Take a minute to subscribe and continue to enjoy The Seattle Times for as little as 99 cents a week.

Subscription options ►

Already a subscriber?

We've got good news for you. Unlimited seattletimes.com content access is included with most subscriptions.

Subscriber login ►
The Seattle Times

To keep reading, you need a subscription upgrade.

We hope you have enjoyed your complimentary access. For unlimited seattletimes.com access, please upgrade your digital subscription.

Call customer service at 1.800.542.0820 for assistance with your upgrade or questions about your subscriber status.

The Seattle Times

To keep reading, you need a subscription.

We hope you have enjoyed your complimentary access. Subscribe now for unlimited access!

Subscription options ►

Already a subscriber?

We've got good news for you. Unlimited seattletimes.com content access is included with most subscriptions.

Activate Subscriber Account ►