Happy Monday to everyone. Based on this morning’s forecasts, it looks like another rough day is ahead for the financial markets. On the bright side, Goldman Sachs analyst David Kostin “believes the technology sector will continue to outperform in the near term, describing it as the ‘unrivaled market leader’ year-to-date,” writes Sam Meredith of CNBC
Kostin’s perspective is reassuring, and it supports my longstanding contention that now is truly the best time to be a technology executive. Despite the pandemic and the ongoing social unrest, I am optimistic about the role of technology and its positive long-term potential for elevating the lives of billions of people all over the world.
One of the best items I read last week was an especially insightful article by Eric J. Savitz in Barron’s, in which he reflects upon the astonishing success of two tech titans, Apple and Microsoft, and their exemplary leaders.
“In Apple’s case, 86 percent of the company’s current market value has been generated since (Tim) Cook took the reins in 2011. At Microsoft, 80 percent of the value creation has come under Satya Nadella, who took over for Gates’ successor Steve Ballmer as Microsoft CEO in 2014. Finding a great leader is a company’s most important task. Apple and Microsoft prove the point,” writes Savitz.
As Savitz notes, both Apple and Microsoft closed the mid-week trading session “with a market value of $1.5 trillion, the first time any American stock had reached that level, and the twin titans of American technology crossed the line together.”
Clearly, Cook and Nadella embody the kind of hyper-focused leadership required in today’s turbulent and continually evolving global economy. Steadily and without a lot of fanfare, these two exemplary tech leaders have delivered exemplary results. In the final analysis, this is what great leadership is all about – staying focused on results, no matter how many distractions you encounter along the way.
“I’ve written in this column before that all of the tech titans — Amazon.com, Alphabet and Facebook in addition to Apple and Microsoft—would come through the Covid-19 crisis stronger than ever, and the past few months have strengthened my view. All five stocks are higher on the year, with an average gain of 17 percent,” Savitz writes.
It’s hard to argue with the overall numbers. If there’s a lesson to be learned here, it’s stay the course and don’t lose your focus. That might sound like simple advice, but it’s stood the test of time, and it’s worth remembering in the days and week ahead.
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