The Impact of a CEO

Hugh Martin, Pacific Biosciences

John Sculley, historic CEO of Apple, and Bill Gates, CEO of Microsoft, both demonstrate the impact that effective leadership can have on business and technology. Both of these large companies missed the ground-floor opportunities of the Internet, says Hugh Martin, Chairman and CEO of Pacific Biosciences. But there is a lesson to be learned in how each CEO responded. Apple mostly ignored the Internet boom, says Martin, and faced years of weak financial footing as a result. But Microsoft turned the company around to establish a deeply-rooted Internet presence – particularly its web browser Internet Explorer – in just three days. Martin uses this anecdote to demonstrate how essential leadership can be in corporate success.