Mark Elliot Zuckerberg

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“By giving people the power to share, we’re making the world more transparent”

Residence: Palo Alto, California, US

Nationality: American

Occupation: Chairman & CEO of Facebook, INC

Years Active: 2004 – Present

Networth: US$13.3billion

History/Background:

Born in 1984, in White Plains, New York to a psychiatrist mother and dentist father, Mark Zuckerberg and his three sisters were brought up in Dobbs Ferry, New York. He was raised Jewish up until his bar mitzvah when he turned thirteen and has since then declared himself as an atheist. Mark is able to read and write foreign languages as such French, Hebrew, Latin, and ancient Greek. Mark has enjoyed developing computer programs, especially communication tools and games since middle school. For instance, he developed his own software program called “ZuckNet” for his father to link up his dentistry office and home network for ease of communications.

By the time he began classes at Harvard University, Mark already had a reputation of being a programming prodigy. In his course of studies, he has developed programs such as CourseMatch and Facemash which became so popular that it became an instant hit over the weekend that the program was released and the college had to shut it down because it overwhelmed the school’s network switches and prevented students from accessing the internet for schooling purposes. During his sophomore year, Mark began writing codes for a new project, namely, “Thefacebook”. He soon dropped out of Harvard to fully focus on completing the project.

Initially, facebook started off as just a “Harvard thing” until Mark decided to spread it to other schools with help from his then roommate at Harvard, Dustin Moskovitz. Along with some other friends, Mark set up their first office in mid-2004. They resisted offers from major corporations to buy his company and explained that the purpose of his project was not for money, but rather, to create an open information flow for people. The rest, is history.

On July 2010, Facebook reported that the company has reached a 500million user mark. Today, there are more than 1 billion reported active users of facebook and the numbers are still surging daily. In an interview after the death of Steve Jobs, Mark revealed that Jobs had actually advised him on how to create a management team at Facebook that was “focused on building as high quality and good things as you are”.

Having said that, Zuckerberg is not really a person who enjoys the luxury in his life, but is motivated by his work. He spent most of his time in the office. He lives in ordinary apartment and even sleeps on a mattress on the floor. So it might seem that he does not require extra cash to spend on and being a billionaire who has made significant change to the world that alone already sounds awesome to me and all his supporters.

Leadership Traits & Styles:

Mark Zuckerberg has a very dominant personality and that is reflected in his organization’s purchase of Instagram. He did not inform his board at all of his intended acquisition until all the negotiations were done. According to a member of the board, they were “told, not informed” about the Instagram buy out. He has always believed in his own capability constantly improve on the project that he conceived and developed from the start, Facebook. He stayed on as the CEO instead of selling out when many assumed that it was the only reasonable thing to do.

One of Zuckerberg’s primary leadership quality is his goal-oriented mindset. He was fully focused on the task at hand and led his team all the way until they propelled Facebook into becoming one of the best social media platform in the world. He even gave up on his college education halfway just to reach that goal.

Mark continues to learn from past mistakes made initially due to his immaturity and a lack of career experiences and has overcome many obstacles, as a result. Through perseverance and maintaining a steady focus, he becomes a bit more business savvy each day, while learning to adapt to his new fame and constantly changing environment.

Eric Vogel, the author behind “Mark Zuckerberg: The Man Behind Facebook” revealed that partners that were released in the early stages of Facebook often felt betrayed by Zuckerberg, but would not describe him as an unfair leader.

Achievements/Awards:

  • Facemash
  • Facebook
  • Ranked 66th on Forbes richest man in the world list (2013) with current networth of $13.3billion at the age of 29
  • TIME’s 2010 person of the year

 Contributions:

  • Philanthropist, gives to charity
  • Changed how the world interact socially with one another
  • Operates in more than 100 languages
  • This is a fundamentally new form of communication. In every medium that preceded it, we “sent” a message to another person—telegram, phone call, email, text. But on Facebook you merely do something. The software figures out who sees it. It is the first time real automation has come to mass human communication.
  • Facebook added 250 million new users, reaching more than 600 million in just seven years—an unprecedented achievement, the fastest-growing company of any type in human history. It surpassed Google as the Web’s top destination.
  • Facebook has enormous impact in diverse realms—including politics, media, marketing, privacy, our sense of identity, and our definition of friendship. Its use as a political tool by its members, for example, has shaken politics in countries including Iran, Colombia, Egypt, and Italy
  • Facebook’s impact on the Internet has continued to broaden even outside its own servers. Over 2 million websites now use various aspects of Facebook’s software platform, aiming to capture some of the viral communications power that Facebook uniquely makes possible. These platform tools include the “like” button now increasingly ubiquitous across the Web (including the widget next to this very story).

Additional Comments:

If there is one word that could be used to describe Mark Zuckerberg, it would be genius. From the conceiving of the grand idea of Facebook, to finding the courage to drop out of an ivy league college such as Harvard, and then to refusing to sell the ownership of his company for a hefty profit, Mark Zuckerberg has demonstrated that not only is he good at coming up with ideas to groom his creation, he is wise enough to take risks such as refraining himself from selling the company even though many believed that Facebook has already peaked. Then on, everyone was proven wrong and he is right. Facebook today continues to grow under his visionary leadership and sits comfortably at the top of the social networking kingdom. Even acquiring over other different social media platforms to increase their competitive edge.

To say that he has impacted the way the world interacts using social media would be an understatement as he has totally changed how people live! Many other social media platforms have tried and failed within a few years of prosperity, such as myspace and friendster, whereby users have been dipping as time goes by even with the constant, but stale and unwanted updates. Yet, facebook has been around for at least 8 years and are still going strong and growing as the days goes by. They are also capable of coming up with changes that constantly refreshes our users’ interface and even though the changes are often met with disagreement initially, majority of the users tend to adapt to them quickly and soon realize that it was a change for the better. Needless to say, without Mark Zuckerberg’s leadership and vision (as seen in his solo decision to buy over Instagram), Facebook will never be the way it is today. And hey, who would actually argue otherwise, right?

Credits:

http://www.forbes.com/sites/ericjackson/2012/04/18/the-power-of-millennial-zuck/
http://nweeksed614.blogspot.sg/2011/02/leadership-qualities-of-mark-zuckerberg.html
http://www.personal.psu.edu/bfr3/blogs/leader/2013/01/maturation-facebook-and-mark-zuckerberg.html
http://www.fastcompany.com/3003771/how-mark-zuckerberg-and-facebook-gave-new-life-old-management-style
http://socialleadershipdevelopment.com/leadership-qualities-1/mark-zuckerberg-ce
http://www.forbes.com/billionaires/list/