Bob's Gutsy Leadership Blog

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As Appeared on SmartBlog on Leadership…

Lou Gerstner, the guy who saved IBM in the mid-1990s, likes to tell the story that back in 1993, very few people would correctly answer the question: What is the biggest software company in the world? Nearly all said Microsoft, but the correct answer was IBM.

Why the misperception? It was due to the fact that IBM never thought of itself as a software company and did not even have a unified software strategy. Software to IBM was simply one part of a hardware-based offering.  Since every computer needs an operating system, and most need databases, and transactional processing capability, IBM had built many of these software assets but never viewed them as a unique business. Rather, they were buried inside IBM hardware or sold as an add-on feature.

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