It’s a Marathon

Michael’s Letter to Team Members

One of the best parts of my job is meeting our customers and partners where they live and work, and seeing firsthand all the amazing things they are doing with our technology. But like everyone, I’ve been grounded for nearly five months — riding out the pandemic and waiting for everything to get back to normal. But what we’re all coming to realize is that whatever or whenever normal happens, it isn’t going to be anytime soon.

When this started, there was a sense of novelty. The novel coronavirus also came with novel ways to live and work and communicate, and with all of us in it together and an abundance of goodwill and kindness and generosity of spirit, we’ve helped each other safely through. Now, the novelty is wearing thin. We’re all done with coronavirus, but unfortunately, the virus isn’t done with us.

This is going to be a marathon and it’s going to be uneven and frustrating at times. Some of our sites are opening… others are not. Some schools will start in person and others will not. And as hot spots flare up and down over the coming months, local situations will quickly change. We are all going to have to be incredibly flexible, agile and patient. Patient with each other and patient with ourselves and our families. And we are going to have to take a longer-term view of the new normal.

Back in March we made a quick pivot and kept our business running, delivering essential services and solutions for our customers. Now we’re reorienting our business toward new customer priorities, aligning with our customers’ needs to continue to do it fast and to also to do it right for the long-term transformation of their businesses. Our work and family situations also need to be secure and sustainable.

COVID-19 has made one thing clear – work is something you do, an outcome, not a place or a time. We want you to have the flexibility to weather this storm safely and productively, however long it lasts. In many cases we’ve seen that you can be more productive working remotely. I encourage you to talk with your managers about what flexibility you and your families may need. It will likely look different for each of us, and that’s OK.

This next phase will be all about resilience and grit – and we’re going to have to dig deeper into that well of goodwill and kindness and generosity, which are going to be more important than ever.

I’ve never been prouder of you, of this company and of our collective spirit and culture. Thanks to everyone for staying safe, remaining flexible and delivering for our customers during this unique period. We will get through this together.


About the Author: Michael Dell

Michael Dell is chairman and chief executive officer of Dell Technologies, an innovator and technology leader providing the essential infrastructure for organizations to build their digital future, transform IT and protect their most important information. With revenues of $91B and 157,000 team members, Dell Technologies is one of the world’s largest IT companies serving the needs of global corporations and governments to small businesses and consumers. The company's unique structure allows innovative, fast-moving startups to co-exist with, and leverage, the global reach and trusted reputation of the large enterprise. Michael’s story started when he founded Dell Technologies with $1000 in 1984 at the age of 19. Notably quoted as saying that “technology is about enabling human potential,” Michael’s vision of how technology should be designed, manufactured and sold forever changed the IT industry. In 1992, Michael became the youngest CEO ever to earn a ranking on the Fortune 500. Known and admired for his astute business vision and bold moves, Michael took Dell Technologies private in 2013, setting the stage to architect the largest technology deal in history with the combination of Dell, EMC and VMware in 2016 and the subsequent relisting of Dell Technologies on the public markets in 2018. In 1998, Michael formed MSD Capital, a private investment firm that exclusively manages the capital for the Dell family. And in 1999, he and his wife, Susan Dell, established the Michael & Susan Dell Foundation to accelerate opportunity for children growing up in urban poverty in the U.S., India and South Africa. Michael is an honorary member of the Foundation Board of the World Economic Forum and is an executive committee member of the International Business Council. He is also a member of the Technology CEO Council, the U.S. Business Council and the Business Roundtable. He serves on the advisory board of Tsinghua University's School of Economics and Management in Beijing, China and on the governing board of the Indian School of Business in Hyderabad, India. He is a board member of Catalyst and also served as the United Nations Foundation's first Global Advocate for Entrepreneurship.