Volunteerism And Philanthropic Organizations Assignment

At the age of 15, Bill Gates and Paul Allen developed “Traf-o-Data,” the computer program that moderated traffic patterns in their hometown of Seattle. They netted $20,000 and wanted to start their own company, but Gates’s parents wanted him to finish high school, go to college, and become a lawyer. In the fall of 1973, he enrolled at Harvard University and spent more time in the computer lab than going to class.

In the summer of 1974, Gates joined Allen at Honeywell. A year later, the two formed a partnership called Micro-Soft. In late 1978 they moved back to Washington. They renamed the company Microsoft and it grossed $2.5 million that year. Gates was 23 years old.

In 1986, they took Microsoft public with an initial offering (IPO) at $21 a share. Gates held 45 percent of the company’s shares and his stake was estimated to be about $234 million.

Gates studied the philanthropic efforts of others and created the William H. Gates Foundation in 1994 dedicated to supporting education, world health, and investing in low-income communities. In 2000, Bill and Melinda Gates put in $28 billion to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

In February 2014, Gates announced that he was stepping down as chairman of Microsoft in order to spend more time as its technology advisor. At the same time, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer was replaced by Satya Nadella.

On July 17, 2014, Microsoft announced that it was laying off up to 18,000 employees.

Questions for Discussion

We suggest that you review the following:

Roose, Kevin. “Microsoft Just Laid Off Thousands of Employees With a Hilariously Bad Memo,” nymag.com (July 17, 2014).

Ovide, Shira. “Microsoft Brings Office to the iPad,” The Wall Street Journal (March 28, 2014), p. B1

Ovide, Shira, and Steve Rosenbush. “Microsoft Preps Office for iPad; New Boss to Deviate From Windows-First Policy, Users Are Wary,” The Wall Street Journal (March 27, 2014), p. B4.

Ovide, Shira and Spencer E. Ante. “Microsoft Pick: Change Agent?” The Wall Street Journal (February 3, 2104), p.B1, B4.

Ovide, Shira. “Why Is It So Hard to Find Microsoft’s Next Chief Executive,”; The Wall Street Journal (January 4-5, 2014), p. B1.

Stone, Brad. “Bill Gates—Philanthropist,”; Bloomberg BusinessWeek (August 12–25, 2013), pp. 52–54.

Wingfield, Nick. “Microsoft to Lay Off Thousands, Most from Nokia Unit,” www.nytimes.com (July 17, 2014).




  1. Discuss ways that the company you work for might encourage its employees to engage in volunteerism and philanthropic organizations? Get Operations Management homework help today
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