Steve Ballmer explains his philosophy as CEO

Whatever else you might think about Steve Ballmer’s reign at Microsoft, there’s no doubt that he’s helped the company maintain its position as an absolute cash cow with a thriving enterprise software and services business. In an interview with Fortune, the outgoing Microsoft chief distills his philosophy as CEO into five simple words repeated three times: “How do you make money? How do you make money? How do you make money?”

On the eve of his exit as chief executive officer of Microsoft, after more then a decade on the job, it is more evident than ever that Steve Ballmer’s image does not always reflect reality. As anyone who has ever seen him speak at a conference (or portrayed on television, as he was in cartoon form on the animated series South Park this year) knows, Ballmer is a larger-than-life kind of guy. His public persona is brash, bombastic, and, at times, bordering on boorish. To most people, he is known more for his manner than his management.

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