The gift of the gab is not enough to lead the big firms of tomorrow.
If Silicon Valley is the new Hollywood, then the land of the geeks must ensure that the dizzying success of today’s tech celebrities – far richer and more powerful than anyone who has made it on the big screen – does not lead to a culture that could stifle the next billion-dollar idea. The math geniuses, software engineers and super coders behind Silicon Valley’s creation must not be replaced by sweet-talking, inexperienced executives as the industry continues its rise. Big tech boardrooms are fully aware they need to hold onto their expertise. “We’re bringing the geek back,” Intel’s boss Patrick Gelsinger told Fortune last week, months after saying he wanted the company to go back to an “engineering-centric culture”. Days earlier, Twitter picked low-profile Parag Agrawal, its 37-year-old chief technology officer who has enjoyed maths and computers since childhood, to replace its eccentric founder Jack Dorsey.