Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer made the decision to develop the original Xbox just a month into his tenure as CEO, and regarded the move as “my decision, my accountability,” he told Fortune.
“I believe in accountability,” Ballmer told Fortune. “I’m in. I’m accountable. I’ll make this work—not that I had to drive it—but we had some bumps on the road. And it was important that I stay accountable, stay patient, and stay behind the decision that we made.”
According to Microsoft’s former president of entertainment and devices Robbie Bach, Ballmer conducted research for six straight months before deciding it was a move Microsoft needed to make sanctioned development of Xbox.
“He was willing to step out into a space that Microsoft had never been in, look at a business model, and say, ’This is something we need to try,’” Bach said.
Ballmer, who has been serving as Microsoft’s CEO since January 2000, is set to step down sometime 2014.