Steve Stone

Developer. Designer. Youth Worker. Nerd.

Hit Refresh

August 9, 2021

Just finished Hit Refresh by Satya Nadella, the current CEO of Microsoft that came in after Steve Balmer. The book talks about how he is attempting to turn Microsoft from stagnation and the butt-of-jokes back to being innovative, empathetic, and a desired place to work. His method starts with changing the culture of the company, then innovate from there. Here are a few key takeaways:


He mentions that he considers the C in CEO to stand for curator of culture. Thought that was fun.

Three C's

He talks about his 3C’s of building and sustaining innovation-producing and customer-pleasing products. They are concentric circles:

  1. Concept (outer ring) - they need to have an outstanding strategy or product idea.
  2. Capabilities (middle ring) they need the resources and skills to build that strategy/idea, product.
  3. Culture (inner ring) the team needs to feel safe/empowered/valued enough to embrace new concepts and new capabilities so they can move forward.


He noted how they needed to build a learn-it-all culture rather than know-it-all. A good culture can help the company to accelerate towards set goals and targets faster than a company with little culture or a harmful culture.

Formula for trust

He has a formula for trust. He points out that it is silly to mathematically define trust, but I thought it was a creative way to look at what goes into trusting something/someone.

E + SV + SR = T/t

Empathy + shared values + Safety and reliability = trust over time