There are a lot of things that go into creating success. I don't like to do just the things I like to do. I like to do things that cause the company to succeed. I don't spend a lot of time doing my favorite activities.
I can predict things. I can improve the uptime and the reliability. I can intervene and cause a better outcome before there's a problem.
One of the interesting things about the Dell-EMC combination is that we don't have a lot of overlap.
The interesting thing is when we design and architect a server, we don't design it for Windows or Linux, we design it for both. We don't really care, as long as we're selling the one the customer wants.
It's through curiosity and looking at opportunities in new ways that we've always mapped our path at Dell. There's always an opportunity to make a difference.
I can't ever remember being struck by lightning when making a big decision. It's always about taking in more and more data points and making tack adjustments as you figure it out. I call customers, suppliers, industry analysts and try to get as much information as possible.
You don't have to be a genius or a visionary or even a college graduate to be successful. You just need a framework and a dream.
The best customers for us are the ones that present us with a new problem because chances are, if one customer has that problem, 100 more have it, or 1,000, or 10,000. So you start thinking about solution development rather than product development.
If I come to Aspen for one or two nights, I stay at the St. Regis.
I think it is going to be very difficult to be a company in silos. I think the game has changed. We won't define our success by looking at the competitors but at how satisfied are our customers, how engaged are our internal stakeholders, and how good is our product pipeline.
We tell prospective hires, 'If you want an environment that is never going to change, don't come here. This is not the place for you.'
I do think a founder has special permission to make sweeping changes across an organization.
Microsoft's an important partner for Dell, an important company in the industry.
Rural technology is moving from kind of the back office to where everything, every company - sales, marketing, customer acquisition, new product development, media - all industries are becoming technology industries. And it's not information technology: it's business technology.
When we acquired Secureworks, if we had taken it and made all the salespeople into Dell salespeople, we would have totally destroyed Secureworks. Instead, it remained Secureworks but with capital from Dell and access to Dell's customers. And now, it's a great business.
Buying a company that is number one in its business is hard to do. When something is for sale, it's often not a leader.
I called up a bunch of the CEOs of Silicon Valley companies and said, 'Hey, can I come and see you? And I'd like to learn about what you're doing.' And I don't know, most of them said yes.
Relative to other economies in the world, India has a good feel to it.
You have to do stuff that you're actually incredibly passionate and excited about and you know something about. The 'oppor-tuneurs' don't do as well as the entrepreneurs.
Every breakthrough business idea begins with solving a common problem. The bigger the problem, the bigger the opportunity. I discovered a big one when I took apart an IBM PC. I made two interesting discoveries: The components were all manufactured by other companies, and the system that retailed for $3,000 cost about $600 in parts.
VMWare, as you know, remains a public company, and Secure Works is also a public company. And it's possible in the future that within the group, we could have other public companies.
There are many different kinds of PCs. You have fixed, virtual, tablets, notebooks, ultrabooks, desktops, workstations. What you find in commercial PCs, business PCs, is that there's a really long tail of usage on client devices.
In taking Dell private, we plan to go back to our roots, focusing on the entrepreneurial spirit that made Dell one of the fastest-growing and most successful companies in history.
Productivity is grounded in the PC. Where does the computing power come from? How would you run 'USA Today' without PCs? Run a hospital without PCs? People don't want products, they want solutions.
People assume that the executive branch has more power than it actually has. Only the legislative branch can create the laws; the executive branch cannot create the laws. So, if the executive branch tries to create a branch one side or the other... you go back to the founders of the nation. They set up a system that ensures that it doesn't happen.
If you think about computing, there isn't just one way to compute, just like there's not just one way to move around. You can have shoes, you can have a car, you can have a bicycle, submarine, rocket, plane, train, glider, whatever. Because you have one doesn't mean you get rid of another one... But PCs continue to be important.
One of the biggest challenges we face today is finding managers who can sense and respond to rapid shifts, people who can process new information very quickly and make decisions in real time. It's a problem for the computer industry as a whole - and not just for Dell - that the industry's growth has outpaced its ability to create managers.
People ask me all the time, 'How can I become a successful entrepreneur?' And I have to be honest: It's one of my least favorite questions, because if you're waiting for someone else's advice to become an entrepreneur, chances are you're not one.
Dell will participate in tablets and all sorts of client devices. Our main business is helping our customers secure, protect their data and access it from any device they want to.
Real entrepreneurs have what I call the three Ps (and, trust me, none of them stands for 'permission'). Real entrepreneurs have a 'passion' for what they're doing, a 'problem' that needs to be solved, and a 'purpose' that drives them forward.
I've been fascinated with technology since I was a boy banging around on my father's adding machine. Back then I'd type in an equation, the device made some cool noises, and out came my answer. I was hooked.
The world got enamored with smartphones and tablets, but what's interesting is those devices don't do everything that needs to be done. Three-D printing, virtual-reality computing, robotics are all controlled by PCs.
When you found a company, you feel a deep sense of responsibility for it. I'll care about Dell even after I'm dead. So this is a pretty personal process. And when you're doing what you love, and it's working, you don't get tired working what other people might consider long hours or crazy schedules. It's just fun. It's energizing.
Computing shows up in many different ways. You have computing that you wear, computing that you carry. What you think of as the traditional PC market has a long tail of usage, particularly in the commercial world, but also in consumer.
At Dell, we believe the customer is in control, and our job is to take all the technology that's out there and apply it in a useful way to meet the customer's needs.
The whole idea behind virtual integration is that it lets you meet customers' needs faster and more efficiently than any other model. With vertical integration, you can be an efficient producer - as long as the world isn't changing very much.
The customer reaction to Dell going private has been a lot more positive than I would have ever imagined. Customers see it as - 'You don't have to be distracted. Now you can totally focus on your business.' So they see it as a positive.
IT for a long time has been about how do you make old processes more efficient. But with all of the progress in digital technology, there is a kind of digital transformation that is occurring. And you see it with the explosion in the number of devices; you see it in the explosion in the number of applications.
Twenty years and $40 billion. They seem like good round numbers.
Dell's a company that has changed the IT landscape in making PCs and servers more affordable. There's enormous opportunities to make IT more accessible to tens of millions of companies, kind of democratizing the ability for companies to gain access to IT.
Our business is about technology, yes. But it's also about operations and customer relationships.
You have to imagine a world in which there's this abundance of data, with all of these connected devices generating tons and tons of data. And you're able to reason over the data with new computer science and make your product and service better. What does your business look like then? That's the question every CEO should be asking.
I was in seventh grade math class, and we had this thing called Number Sense. So, I wasn't on the track team. Wasn't on the football team. Wasn't on the basketball team. I was in the Number Sense Club.
I started Dell with $1000 dollars. Now it's a billion dollar company. Impossible is nothing.
The IT organization can't drive or lead a digital transformation. It has to come from the business and the business strategy, because they're fundamental to how a company or an organization evolves.