Satya Nadella, Microsoft's chief executive, has been in charge of the world's largest technology company for six years, In a recent media interview, he talked about the role of technology in society and the future of the technology industry in detail.The following is the full text of the interview:
(data chart, from:Microsoft)
- questions of trust
There are three things we need to think about. First of all, is the economic growth brought about by technology fair and reasonable? You can't just let technology flourish; you need to develop all industries. Integration between emerging and developed markets needs to continue.
The second is trust. The unintended consequences are not what we want to see. Privacy – You must regard data and privacy as a human right. Cybersecurity - The economic damage from cyber attacks is close to $1 trillion, with small businesses and consumers hardest hit. As a technical supplier, we are on-site first aid workers. We must develop core infrastructure, even engineering processes, to ensure that there is more trust in technology.
Finally, sustainability. Regardless of the earth's protection, growth and trust are impossible.
Q: that said, how will the industry regain trust when consumers see technology companies abusing their personal information or learn that they have been victims of data leaks?
Nadella:Many other industries have more or less such experience, we can learn from it. For example, why do I trust the food I eat and the food safety laws and regulations? For us, the first thing to do is to allocate talents and resources so that we can think about the unexpected consequences of the developed technology.
Let's take artificial intelligence ethics as an example. You are introducing a model, for example, based on human language. Based on the training data, this model will form some biases. The first line of defense against bias is to train the model from the beginning by a diverse team. We can't give up control. So do we have internal processes to ensure team diversity? We have engineering processes for executing security code - so what is the engineering process for executing security ethics?
That's what we have to do. But the society must also formulate corresponding laws and regulations. The combination of the two can help us trust technology.
Q: The analogy in the food industry is interesting because, like technology, food affects everyone. Not only that, but also because of the buzz caused by the book "The Jungle," published by Upton Sinclair, convinced Americans that we need food safety regulations. Does our tech world need something similar to wake us up and make changes?
Nadella:I hope not. We already live in a world where technology is everywhere. deeply embedded in our lives, society and economy.
- The greater the capacity, the greater the responsibility
Q: How do you think Microsoft should be regulated?
Nadella:We can't wait for regulators to act - so the question is, how should we regulate ourselves? Taking the General Data Management Ordinance as an example, we are in compliance with it and, more importantly, we need to focus on data rights and make them guaranteed worldwide. Because in the United States, I hope there will be more federal regulators around data privacy, and laws that can be complied with.
Q: I've been thinking about the role of the private sector in society. The influence of a modern technology company is extensive and profound. How do you distinguish between government responsibility and Microsoft responsibility for social malpractice?
Nadella:That's a good question. I love the definition of Colin Mayer, an economist at Oxford University: companies exist to create profitable solutions to the challenges facing humanity and the planet. I believe that private enterprise, as a social institution, is the best mechanism we can use to allocate resources effectively. But the private sector also needs to be regulated to ensure that these private companies are indeed creating solutions rather than problems. And, I think, that's the real crux.
Your core business model must be aligned with your surroundings. You can't commit yourself to the ESG business (environment, society, and governance) while you go against the world. This is not acceptable. Every night before going to bed, I'm thinking that if Microsoft does well enough, we can help small businesses increase productivity or help big companies make their employees more competitive. To be honest, it is this that gives me the opportunity to operate globally. If not, who would welcome a multinational company operating in their own community?
Then you have to consider your obligations. At Microsoft, we have full-time employees and part-time employees. Part-time workers cannot enjoy the same maternity policy as full-time employees, but they are still fighting alongside us. So we thought," you know what? We'll pay them for the benefits. The same goes for low- and middle-income housing. We need people from all levels of income. They can't be tired of commuting. So, with the shareholder's permission, we used some of the money on the balance sheet. It has nothing to do with spreading virtue. This is a practical obligation in the interests of our long-term shareholders.
Q: I still don't know how you can distinguish between corporate responsibility and government responsibility. Let's get back to the topic of maternity leave. Despite this economic clout, the United States remains one of the developed countries that does not provide federally paid maternity leave. It's good for private companies to provide benefits, but shouldn't it be a national policy?
NADELLAThat's right. One of the American legislation that I really appreciate is the Americans with Disabilities Act. It's a great thing for the disabled - and I personally know that. This is what enlightened government should do for a large number of citizens in need. It's not about any company building wheelchair ramps, it's about everyone making it possible for people with disabilities to participate fully in our economy.
-Beyond cloud services
Let's change the subject. In 2016, when we reported on you, Microsoft's share price was at an all-time high. Today, Microsoft's share price is three times that of that time. You invested heavily in cloud services. As it turns out, you are right. But the explosive growth of cloud services is starting to slow. So what's the next step?
Nadella:Calculations are reaching out to people, things, places, etc. Digitization in the economy is taking place on a wide scale. And we're still in its infancy. The technology sector's production value is only 5% of GDP and will reach 10% in the future. But the question is, what does the remaining 90% of GDP have to do with technology? I don't need to look for the next plan. I just need to see what's going on right now. What are we doing in precision agriculture? How do medical outcomes improve? How does e-commerce and retail become more personalized? And how can banks be more inclusive?
Q: for you, it's all about technology.
NADELLA: Yes.These technologies have an installation phase, followed by a deployment phase. In the next decade, I look forward to software and digital technology, like electricity, to help every industry. We are a platform company. One of the core rules of a stable platform is that the value outside the platform must be greater than the value inside the platform.
Q: six years ago today, the company announced the appointment of you as the third CEO of Microsoft. What's the worst advice you've received since then?
Nadella:Think back to the past, think that the success of the elements, can bring new success. But this is not the case. History will give you a blow. That's my idea. You must have a constant learning mentality. No change. There is no talent for theocracy because you succeed once, you can ensure that you continue to succeed.
Q: past performance does not guarantee future results.
NANDRA: this is it.