There is one name that is synonymous with the words money and technology and that is William ???Bill??? Henry Gates III, computer programmer who co-founded Microsoft Corporation, is the world??™s largest personal computer software company. The corporation Bill Gates created along with his philanthropic works makes him the epitome of what a great business leader should be. It is the intention of this paper to explain the attributes needed to become a powerful and respected leader in corporate world and how Bill Gates has accomplished this task with apparent ease.
Bill was born to a family rich in business, political and community service history. Gates father was a highly known and respected lawyer. His grandfather worked in a bank and eventually became the president of the bank; his great-grandfather was a mayor and a state legislature. It is no surprise that Bill had ambition, competitiveness and intelligence to spare at a very young age. Recognizing this, his parents enrolled him in a private school known for its academics, Lakeside Academy. Of course Bill excelled, and then he was introduced to the computer. When he went to school, computers were large and costly that the school could not afford to have them for the students. Instead they purchased time on a computer from General Electric Corporation. Bill and several classmates began spending every spare second in the computer lab, learning everything they could about writing code and creating working programs. This meant that his once pristine grades began to drop drastically, work wasn??™t being turned in and he regularly skipped class. (Mirick, 1996)
In 1968 Computer Center Corporation opened its doors to the public. It was offering computer time for affordable rates and one of the chief programmers had a child that attended Lakeside Academy so the school was offered a lot more computer time than used to be available. Of course Bill Gates and his group of friends couldn??™t wait to get in on this time. Bill and friends began immediately researching this new machine and quickly learned how to hack into its operating programs (Mirick, 1996).
Computer Center Corporation soon realized that if a group of students could hack into and destroys their operating systems; just about anyone else with time and money could. They hired Bill and several other students to play with their computer and find any bugs in the systems and expose any weaknesses they may find. He invested every second he could into educating himself on the ins and outs of computers. He and a couple other students decided to form a Lakeside Programmers Group. The group was determined to find their way to apply their computer skills in the real world. This is how Microsoft began to come to fruition. (Mirick, 1996).
In 1973, Gates started at Harvard University. He was not sure what he wanted to study; so he and his father started to explore the opportunities that Harvard had to offer. While they were exploring he decided to enroll in the pre-law program. Now that he was going to be a freshman, he took the standard freshman courses with the one exception. He signed up for Harvards toughest math courses. He did do well in his classes, but just as he did in high school, he did not give all in to his studies. Once he located the schools computer lab, he lost himself in the world of computers once again. Gates spent many nights learning and working on the schools computer and the following day??™s asleep in class. Computers began to over power his life and his fascination continued.
Gates was convinced that the software market was created. Within a year, he became the most successful Harvard dropout. This is when Microsoft was formed along with his friend Paul Allen. Gates came from a family that had many successful professionals in its past. Bill Gates was expected to be successful too. Family history and expectations were part of the Bill Gates that we know today, and he formed the strong belief that software and its uses would eventually become more important than the hard ware that it was developed for, which was in disagreement with the opinion at the time.
The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation founded in 2000. Their man goal is to enhance healthcare and reduce extreme poverty, and in the United States, to expand educational opportunities and access to information technology. It is the largest charitable foundation in the United States and now has more than two hundred people employed and is worth $30 billion. Over a billion dollars is given away every year. The foundation has invested almost a billion dollars on education. In the mid 1990??™s Gates entered the philanthropy world; with big investments in libraries, hoping to make internet access universal, especially for the poor. Melinda and Bill Gates believed Internet Access would become a precondition for entry to the new economy, and they wanted to make sure poor families and poor communities weren??™t left out.
As of 2006, the foundation has an endowment of approximately $34.6 billion. For the foundation keep its status as a charitable foundation it has to donate at least 5% of its assets each year (www.wikipedia.org). The foundation as of April 2006 has been organized into four divisions: finance, public relations, human resources, administration, with three grant making programs. The three grant programs are: global health program where the foundation provides 17% of the world budget for the attempted eradication of the poliomyelitis (polio), global development program which combats extreme poverty through grants throughout the world United States program. The United States had installed software and computers, and provided training and technical support in partnership with public libraries nationwide. The foundation gave $12.2 million grant to a Southeastern Library Network to help libraries on the Gulf Coast of Louisiana and Mississippi; many of them were destroyed or damaged by Hurricanes Katrina and Rita (www.wikipedia.org).
So in conclusion, William Gates III is a great leader. He has shown that anyone can do, think of new ways or just create anything if they set their mind to it. He has also shown his generosity by creating the foundation to donate so much money to people that need it. He will always be remembered for many century??™s to come.
Friedenberg, M. (2008, February 15, 2008). Thank you, Bill. CIO, 21, 8.
Mirick, J. (1996, September 29, 1996). William H. Gates before Microsoft
http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/exec/billg/bio.mspx written by bill gates
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