Systems Leadership Summit, Day 2
By Josh Simons on Aug 23, 2006
The second and final day of John Fowler's System Group Leadership Summit began with a presentation by John on his leadership values, which all of the attendees I spoke with later found very valuable. I guess it's always good to know what the boss is thinking and what he values. In this case, the concept of "stewardship" is something that resonates with John. He defined stewardship as having three axes: Responsibility, Service, and Mature Leadership.
The follow-on leadership training session, run by an external trainer, was not very useful in my view. While it worked reasonably well as a teaming session, I didn't gain any real insight into improving my leadership abilities. Others seemed to feel the same way.
The balance of the day was filled with presentations by Mike Lehman, Greg Papadopoulos, and Jonathan Schwartz.
I always appreciate an opportunity to hear Mike speak because he is frank and clear about where we are, what we need to be doing, what we've done so far, and where we are going.
Greg's talk was one I'd heard before, but it reinforced the message for me. I agree with him that there is a real shift happening from delivering applications as bits on local systems towards delivering applications as services in the network. I can see that as a Sun employee, but more important, I can see it as a consumer.
Jonathan's was the last session of the day and it was more of a Q&A session that a set of prepared remarks. He was pleased with the great server market share news that was released today. Since he was talking to the Systems Group, the division responsible for designing and building those servers, he expressed his appreciation to all for the hard work that contributed to these results. He also apologized to John for running late and not being able to pick up a bottle of champagne to open in front of the team. Instead, he simulated the event by throwing a cup of water on John as an homage, which drew a big laugh from the crowd.