Who’s ready to be the next CEO of Microsoft?

We all know that Microsoft needs a new chief executive officer. What we don’t know is who’s going to take over this key tech-industry post. PCWorld writer Mark Hachman, though, was prepared to make a few guesses. And he highlighted those who he has pegged as the odds-on favorite for being the next Microsoft CEO.

The industry veteran

Stephen Elop carries a big advantage with regards to the CEO spot: He’s spent much of his career working at Microsoft. As Hachman points out, which means that he understands how the tech giant operates. Elop joined Microsoft’s business division in 2008 before moving into its Office group and Microsoft Dynamics. Beginning in 2010, he commenced serving as Nokia’s executive vice president of devices and .

The pro

Hachman points to 68-year-old Alan Mulally as another favorite for the key Microsoft post. This engineer worked at Boeing for 37 years, becoming chief executive officer of Boeing Commercial Airlines. He joined Ford as its president in 2006, and received praise for leading the automaker through the economic downturn while not accepting government bailout dollars. He is, though, nearly 70, and some wonder if that will hurt his chances.

The rising star

Hachman also lists 46-year-old Tony Bates as a possible Microsoft CEO. Bates thrived at Cisco, eventually overseeing thousands of employees as senior vice president in charge of enterprise, commercial and small business. He then relocated to Skype to serve as its CEO in 2010. At Skype, Hachman writes, Bates expanded VoIP technology into the business world.

Posted on: 12.11.13