The corporate world is still reeling with the shock of Microsoft’s latest announcement; Steven Sinofsky, long-time team member and President of the Windows Division, has chosen to leave the multinational corporation, effective immediately. This move comes hot on the heels of executive changes at rival company Apple, including the dismissal of iPhone software division head Scott Forstall. It also follows the release of Windows 8, Microsoft’s latest operating system.
While the announcement of Steven Sinofsky’s departure from Microsoft has certainly sparked widespread speculation, neither he nor the corporation have cited a reason for the decision. Sinofsky did respond to supportive messages on Twitter however, tweeting that he felt “humbled and blessed” by the online outpouring of support and positive messages.
Now that Steven Sinofsky’s time at Microsoft is at an end, let’s take a look back at the stellar career of this well-respected businessman and his rise up through the ranks in the corporate world of software creation.
Steven Sinofsky studied at Cornell University, where he obtained a Bachelors degree in Arts and Sciences in 1987, and later at The University of Massachusetts Amherst, where he earned a Masters degree in computer science in 1989. It was after this that he joined Microsoft as a software design engineer.
In 1994, Sinofsky joined the newly-formed Office Product Unit at Microsoft as the Director of Program Management. He was in charge of the shared technologies developed for use in Microsoft Office 95 and 97. He then went on to lead the Development Tools team, and helped to design the Microsoft Foundation Classes C++ library.
In the years that followed, Steven Sinofsky oversaw numerous Microsoft Office developments, and in 2009 he took on the role as President of the Windows Division. The well-received Windows 7 operating system was developed under Sinofsky’s leadership.
Philosophy and Legacy
During his time at Microsoft, Steven Sinofsky became highly involved in the recruitment process and put a great deal of effort into convincing software engineers to work for Microsoft rather than Google. His leadership style and approach to product development has influenced numerous other divisions at Microsoft to follow his example.
“I am grateful for the many years of work that Steven has contributed to the company” Microsoft chief executive Steven Ballmer told press. In return, Steven Sinofsky had only positive things to say about his former company, saying “I am humbled by the professionalism and generosity of everyone I have had the good fortune to work with”.
What’s next for Microsoft, and for Steven Sinofsky? The corporate world will be watching closely in the coming months