It is always a significant occasion when you spend 9,000 days at a company and then decide to part ways. This is what Antoine Leblond is doing, as Microsoft continues making upper management changes.

According to this recent report, Leblond will leave Redmond today (Monday) after nearly 25 years at the software giant. 25 years of very high-profile work.

He has held key positions in the Windows and Office divisions, and is said to have already submitted a letter to all his colleagues, that while does not actually provide any reason for his departure, but does make it clear that the man is excited for what comes next.

This is what he had to say:

“After almost 25 years, I’ve decided it’s time for me to go out and see what the non-Microsoft world has to offer.

Every single day I have had here has been amazing in its own way, and I will never look back on all of these years with anything but fondness, pride in what we’ve accomplished together, and a real appreciation for having been lucky enough to be part of so many awesome things. I am sad to leave all of you, but also incredibly excited for what comes next.”

Excited for what comes next? Well, aren’t we all?

Anyway, Leblond was the force behind the Office suite of productivity applications, having worked on it for 20 solid years. He also collaborated with former Windows boss Steven Sinofsky on Windows 8, before he decided to leave Microsoft after the launch of the modern operating system.

Call it coincidence, but other senior executives that worked closely with Sinofsky on Windows 8 have also recently left Microsoft — and this list includes names like Jon DeVaan and Grant George that have been sidelined by this reorganization thing going on over at Redmond.

That, or they really do not factor in with the strategy Satya Nadella has in place.

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  1. It sounds like this may be a product of comfort. Once one person leaves, the others comfortable working with them, start to head out as well. Maybe it’s a good time for a fresh perspective.

  2. How old is Leblond? He looks like he’s still somewhat younger, which makes this a curious decision, especially if he plans on working elsewhere.

    • Agreed, Bill. If this picture is recent, he still seems young enough to keep working. Based on that and his comments, it looks like he plans on working somewhere else. 25 years is substantial though and he did a lot for the company, so best of luck.

  3. 25 years is a long time, so it’s hard to say he’s bailing out. But as you mentioned, Fahad, it does appear as though the departure of Sinofsky has at least a little something to do with this.

  4. Obviously, he’s not going to speak negatively of Microsoft after 25 years there. However, if you read between the lines, I think it’s clear he’s not leaving in the greatest spirits. To me, it seems as though he wanted leave.

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