Bad Boy Ballmer: The Man Who Rules MicrosoftBy Fredric Alan Maxwell
- Author: Fredric Alan Maxwell
- Binding: Paperback
- Published: 2002-01-01
The life of Steve Ballmer is an incredible story of tremendous ambition, genius, arrogance, and charisma, an up-by-the-bootstraps saga of how the child of immigrants growing up in suburban Michigan became the only American billionaire to acquire his wealth working for someone else. In the tradition of The New New Thing and The Silicon Boys, Bad Boy Ballmer will tell this story of a man so shamelessly arrogant that he told reporters "to heck with Janet Reno," so intense and aggressive that he ripped his vocal cords by talking to loudly.
In this revealing biography -- based on in-depth study and interviews with Microsoft insiders -- Fredric Alan Maxwell provides the complete, controversial narrative of one of the technology industry's most influential, talked-about figures: Steven Anthony Ballmer, the awkward Detroit Country Day School valedictorian who rose to become Microsoft's president, and in the past two years, its CEO. Together with Bill Gates, Ballmer leads the company he and Gates took from less than 30 employees to some 50,000, and annual revenues from $12 million to more than $20 billion and rising. A balanced portrait, this book reveals the good boy Ballmer -- the dedicated son who once took three months off to care for his ailing parents, and the bad boy Ballmer -- the ruthless businessman who at the same time devised and led a scorched earth policy against other software developers, a policy that earned him the nickname "The Em-balmer."
Bad Boy Ballmer is also the definitive story of the Bill Gates/Steve Ballmer relationship, from their 1974 meeting at a Harvard dorm to the present. Providing fresh insights into the longstanding bond between this odd couple, who describe their relationship as a marriage, the book will show how Ballmer and Gates work together to form Microsoft's ego and id. Or, as former competitor, Novell's Ray Noorda calls them, "the Pearly Gates and the Emballmer: one promises you heaven, the other prepares you for the grave." One half of the new economy's most powerful partnership, Ballmer's greatest accomplishment, Bad Boy Ballmer shows, may be putting up with Gates for over two decades.
Eye-opening and thorough, Bad Boy Ballmer is a shocking look at one of the masterminds of the technological age.