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Hit Refresh: The Quest to Rediscover Microsoft's Soul and Imagine a Better Future for Everyone
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Hit Refresh: The Quest to Rediscover Microsoft's Soul and Imagine a Better Future for Everyone

3.80  ·  Rating details ·  11,610 ratings  ·  1,162 reviews
As told by Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella, Hit Refresh is the story of corporate change and reinvention as well as the story of Nadella’s personal journey, one that is taking place today inside a storied technology company, and one that is coming in all of our lives as intelligent machines become more ambient and more ubiquitous. It’s about how people, organizations and socie ...more
Paperback, 288 pages
Published August 23rd 2018 by Harpercollins Publishers (first published September 26th 2017)
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Alex Shrugged Satya addresses the fear of Artificial Intelligence by offering arguments against "Skynet". I agree that the author is mostly positive about AI, but I…moreSatya addresses the fear of Artificial Intelligence by offering arguments against "Skynet". I agree that the author is mostly positive about AI, but I think he has lost his marbles. He seems to be betting the farm on a pair of twos.(less)
Sendhilkumar Alalasundaram Not High Performance Habits, But the book talks about High Performance behaviour/Practices like Empathy, Listening, Collaboration and Continuous Learn…moreNot High Performance Habits, But the book talks about High Performance behaviour/Practices like Empathy, Listening, Collaboration and Continuous Learning and Innovation.(less)
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Caroline Berg
Another reviewer says this is "Recommended for only Microsoft employees" but I disagree. This book isn't even for all Microsoft employees, for it leaves out a very large percentage us - the contractors. In fact, I wouldn't have read this book at all if my boss, who is a full-time employee and not a vendor contractor, hadn't picked up a number of these (the Employee Edition was given away on the Microsoft campus for free - but not to contractors) and dispersed them about the team so that everyone ...more
Sanjay
Sep 28, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: bought
Recommended for only Microsoft employees.
Bharath
Mar 31, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a story about how Satya Nadella, CEO of Microsoft sought to change Microsoft’s culture and rediscover it’s soul. It makes for interesting reading, especially with his emphasis on empathy being the bedrock of his thinking – trying to move public perception of Microsoft being a big uncaring giant falling behind competitors like Apple, to a more forward-looking organisation which invests in research, it’s people and it’s culture.

The culture change which Satya talks about does come across a
...more
Graeme Roberts
Oct 01, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
In the first half, I despaired of any value in this book, though I did enjoy hearing about Mr. Nadella's youth in India, his family, and his love of cricket, which would endear him to anyone from the Commonwealth, including me. Like all companies that have owned a powerful franchise (DOS/Windows and Office) Microsoft had lagged in innovation, and come too late to the Web and mobile, and almost too late for the Cloud. This is central to the very nature of technology business, and not a failure of ...more
Wen
Jan 18, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This read was entirely for work; I nevertheless decided to write a review for those thinking about picking up the book.
To me this book was the written form of an inspirational speech by Satya Nadella, the current CEO of Microsoft, who succeeded Steve Ballmer in 2014.
The book consisted three parts. Nadella first gave a brief description of his background: growing up in India, obsessed in cricket, studied EE in college and moved to the U.S. to obtain masters in CS, joined Microsoft shortly after
...more
Du Nguyen
Why does Microsoft exist? And why do I exist in this new role? That was the questions Nadella asked of himself when he was offered and appointed as the CEO of Microsoft - only the third CEO in its 40-year history. Why am I writing this book is another question that I think Nadella should have asked himself.

Hit Refresh is according to Nadella, not a biography, nor is it a book solely about himself. It's not really a book about technology although that does feature a lot. Nor is it a book about th
...more
Vartika
A VERY long memo to Microsoft employees - I didn't get the sense that the book's purpose was anything more than explaining to the employees why Satya was a great CEO choice, how he is on top of knowing what will take Microsoft to the next level and how some of the initiatives he has taken since joining are all "first of its kind"/ "never heard of"/ "ones he has a knack for".

I also didn't like the tone of superiority and 'look I have growth mindset, but I will still go ahead and proclaim this wil
...more
Shaina Magat
Sep 29, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Really loved the first half of this book. Overall information was really good but it got a little too technical and regulation based in the back half.
Scott Lerch
As a current Microsoft employee I now like Satya even more after reading his book: Hit Refresh. He comes across as more humble and thoughtful than any other current CEO in the tech sector, yet is just as driven and intelligent. I particularly like his mantra of having empathy for our customers and colleagues. Listen first and seek to understand before making any judgement, but be willing to challenge long held beliefs. Satya convinced me changing culture from the top-down and bottom-up is critic ...more
Vinayak
Jan 01, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Ranging somewhere around 3.5 stars, this book is Satya Nadella's manifesto. His worldview on how technology is going to shape up the world in coming times. The beginning parts present stories from his life - school, Microsoft, transitions etc. The end parts however contain more of his manifesto, about how technology and society should interact etc which makes this difficult to read at times. Still not a bad read from one of the new CEOs of a tech giant. 1 time read for sure. Also, follow the sou ...more
Ed Limonov
Oct 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I've got this book from a FRIEND and spent an etnire weekend on reading it. It is definitely the book you want to read if you are serious about progarmming and computers. I will rceommend it to a few friend programmers.
S.Ach
I believe, it is easier to be the CEO of a successful start-up that you founded, than to become a CEO of an already established company by working your way up. And probably, for that reason, I have more respect for Satya Nadella and Sundar Pichai, than for Zuckerberg. Or maybe I am biased, because I am an Indian, after all. :)
Nevertheless, I was interested to know more about Satya Nadella to understand how an average Indian Engineer became the CEO of one of the most powerful IT companies of the
...more
Ashok Krishna
Mr. Satya Nadella begins the afterword of the book with some serious questions of existential nature. He uses questions like, why am I here, why Microsoft exists and so on, to explain his points. Wish he had asked a similar question about the purpose of this book, clarifying himself before even penning the foreword, for this book is a potpourri of thoughts and ideas, all lying disorganised across the pages.

What is one allowed to expect from a book written by the CEO of a tech giant like Microsof
...more
Kavitha Sivakumar
Jan 06, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: usa
4.5 stars

This book is a partial memoir of Satya. In the first part of the book, he described his time in Microsoft and how he ended up as CEO. In the second part, he explains the increasing privacy concerns after Snowden whistle blowing, the benefits (outweighing these privacy concerns) to be gained by increasing reliance on technology, his suggestions/advices to world leaders to promote local entities for technological development, etc, etc.

To be honest, the recent privacy concerns made me decr
...more
Scott
Feb 23, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Satya Nadella is the third CEO at Microsoft, following Bill Gates and Steve Ballmer. “Hit Refresh” is his story and journey, one that is in the middle of still being told.

It covers his physical journey included growing up in India, college in Wisconsin, early jobs in Silicon Valley, and finally his long-term career at Microsoft, from engineer to leader to CEO.

It covers his philosophical journey of discovery through personal pain and family challenges that truly understanding diversity and inclu
...more
Gorab Jain
This had been my breakfast companion for a month. Loved to start the day with some positivity and insights on Microsoft's mental shift.

Satya sounds true to his name and has candidly expressed his opinions, strategies, beliefs and changes that he wanted to manouvre in Microsoft. Writing in hindsight is always easier, but here he has taken up the challenge to write in present-tense.... in spite of being well aware of how much of the stuff could backfire.

One unique thing that captured my fancy was
...more
Rajesh CNB
Oct 22, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
For the first time in 2016 Microsoft offered a free upgrade to Windows 10. That was surprising to me as I had never seen Microsoft offer anything for free. But at that time I didn't pay much attention to the fact and happily upgraded to Windows 10 and encouraged others to do so as well. I checked out the new Internet Explorer and Bing for a month before I decided to switch back to Google Chrome and Google search. I now realize that unwittingly, I was a part of the Microsoft's new campaign and I ...more
Simant | Flipping Through the Pages
Full review on: FLIPPING THROUGH THE PAGES
This book is not for everyone. It is for those who understand technology a bit and are interested in knowing the inner workings of an organization like Microsoft. Not just about Microsoft, you need to learn what a person Satya Nadella is how is reached from a small place in India to where he is today.

Now let’s move to the probable reasons as to why you should read it.

1. To know Satya Nadella’s journey from India to Microsoft
Satya Nadella’s journey is enc
...more
Venky
Oct 01, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Mixed Reality, Artificial Intelligence and Quantum Computing. These are the three most passionate exhortations one finds in "Hit Refresh" by Satya Nadella, the CEO of Microsoft. An autobiography subtly disguised as an expression of the current cultural ethos prevailing inside the world's largest tech behemoth, "Hit Refresh" is an alarmingly thought provoking book. Emphasising his reluctance in writing a memoir ("I'll save that for my dotage"), Satya Nadella briefly traces his origins and adolesc ...more
Pericles
Oct 23, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I'm a Microsoft employee, but this opinion is my own.

This book describes three topics, at a high level:
- Satya Nadella's career and personal life: from a student in India to becoming the CEO of Microsoft, and everything in between, including his personal challenges
- Microsoft's transformation under Satya's tenure
- Industry trends, policies, regulations and how tech companies should enable people to become more productive

Satya's story is encouraging. This is the true story of someone who is tal
...more
ScienceOfSuccess
Jun 17, 2018 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: waiting
I believe that a little bit of PR in a book is good, but 100% PR makes me sad.

TL;DR if you want to make something good, just give all your money to Microsoft, because they are the best.
Vojtech
Jun 08, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The story of how Microsoft changed from an universaly hated ugly duckling of the Windows 95 era to the developer friendly company of the 2020s is to me one of the most interesting ones in the modern tech industry's history. And apparently, this was in no small part thanks to Mr. Nadella and the change of Microsoft's culture he championed. Therefore, I enjoyed quite a bit reading about his opinions and perspectives. If you are interested in this story of a ship turned around and crave more insigh ...more
Frank
It is difficult capture how one speaks in one's writing. Satya, however, does exactly that; he has a distinct composure when he speaks in public; he does not rush over sentences, or become overtly enthusiastic with his facial expressions; he conveys his emotions through the eloquence of his speech to the way his eyes "light up" when he is talking about his passions.

If you've ever heard any of Satya's speeches, you can literally hear his voice while reading "Hit Refresh". He writes with the same
...more
Ben
Aug 29, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed the first half where he talked about how he turned around Microsoft. Satya's empathy lead management style is more aligned with my own preferred management style. It was nice to see that he can be successful with this as opposed to the Bezos Amazon culture. It made me think Microsoft might be a good company to work for. But the second half expanded into solving world problems, here I felt his plans lacked much depth, he would put forth 3-5 bullet points with little reasoning or details ...more
Arunothia Marappan
Satya's views on most things are very deep! He details his own personal evolution in an absolutely honest manner. I could connect with his emotions at many places and that made reading this book even more personal for me. And as a new hire at Microsoft, I found the book very informative and encouraging. I recommend it to all who want to be leaders in any technical field.
Trung Nguyen Dang
I read to understand businesses and I thought i could learn a bit on Microsoft.
It was a waste of time.
Raghu
Nov 28, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Living in Silicon Valley, I have never been a great fan of any of Microsoft’s successful products like Office, Internet Explorer, Outlook or Windows. For personal computing, I moved to using Ubuntu for an Operating system and then moved on to the Chrome OS four years ago. Till a few years ago, even Wall Street probably looked at Microsoft as a dying corporation. Not anymore. It is no longer the evil empire. Its recent products like the Surface Pro would even win approval from design giants like ...more
Ahmad Piraiee
An interesting insight into Satya Nadella's role in transforming Microsoft as the third CEO or as he put it hit refresh on Microsoft.
The book gets better in upcoming chapters as in the beginning there is too much detailed Microsoft info but later you can use it as a point of reference. This is not an autobiography as Satya explicitly mentions it (and keep it open for his next book) but a guide for senior managers who are looking for inspirations on running big corporations and the role of sympat
...more
Greg Hopper
Jul 29, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: business
An inspiring book, and unusual content for a tech CEO. He (of course) describes emerging technologies and their impact, but the recurring theme was empathy.

His success at making Microsoft relevant again is obvious, and his willingness to think heretical thoughts (Office on iOS!) is an important part of that success.

A small thing kept bothering me as I read the book - I appreciate hearing Mr. Nadella's voice telling his story. It is compelling, and (as I said) inspiring. The nagging thought - I
...more
Andrew
Nov 01, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Satya Nadella's "Hit Refresh" is a very refreshing book. As the third CEO of Microsoft, and the first one born in India, he writes from a unique perspective. He has chosen to write this book at the beginning of his tenure, instead of afterward, as he believes there is value in communicating the story of Microsoft at the beginning of his transformation of the company. And I would have to agree. Nadella's background and worldview add much to his leadership capabilities. He is somewhat philosophica ...more
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“I discovered Buddha did not set out to found a world religion. He set out to understand why one suffers. I learned that only through living life’s ups and downs can you develop empathy; that in order not to suffer, or at least not to suffer so much, one must become comfortable with impermanence.” 24 likes
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