Long Seen as Tech's Sleeping Giant, Microsoft Is Reaping the Rewards of Its Stealth Approach

The company has found powerful under-the-radar ways to reach new heights

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As children, we’re told patience is a virtue, that slow and steady wins the race. But in Silicon Valley, where the “build fast, break fast” ethos guides companies, being a turtle is a sin. With this backdrop, Microsoft, that lumbering giant nestled among the forests of the Pacific Northwest, took the financial and tech worlds by surprise in late November by briefly surpassing Apple as the most valuable company on the New York Stock Exchange.

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This story first appeared in the Jan. 7, 2019, issue of Brandweek magazine. Click here to subscribe.