Why Jensen Huang is the best CEO in the world?
In October 2019, Jensen Juan was named “The best CEO of the year”
In October 2019, Jensen Juan was named “The best CEO of the year” by Harvard Business Review (HBR). Jensen has been working for many years to get the title, running one of the most successful companies in Silicon Valley- NVIDIA.
A few weeks before the HBR rankingswere announced, I was fortunate enough to visit NVIDIA's Santa Clara, California office. I spent there several hours and spoke to top managers and employees of the company. Thereby, I understood how Jensen Huang got the first place in the HBR rankings. Taking care of the company's employees is one of his top priorities, and the team contributes back by high-quality work and high loyalty to the company and the product.
Let us start with what NVIDIA is. In 1993, Juan founded his own company with a start-up capital of $ 40000 with the friends: Chris Malakhovsky and Curtis Prem, who worked as engineers at Sun Microsystems. By that time, Jensen had worked at ADM and LSI Logis in various positions and had received his master's degree in electrical engineering from Stanford University. The company's first product turned out to be a flop, but that did not stop the team: in 1999 they introduced the successful GeForce 256 graphics processor, which became the basis for an entire line of GPUs (Graphics processing unit).
Today NVIDIA is the leader in GPU design with over 80% of the discrete graphics market. The company's products have spread to the video games, professional visualization and automotive industries, where NVIDIA on-board computers are used as the basis for self-driving cars.
The NVIDIA headquarters, designed by Gensler, is a complex of 46,000-square-foot triangular open office. The head office is a self-contained, monofunctional, and extremely high-tech building. One of the main tasks in the design of the new office was to reflect the character and personality of the main ideologist and founder of the company, Jensen Juan. When you look at this magnificent building, you understand that the idea was 100% successful.
Entering the central entrance, you immediately find yourself in a room with ceilings 15 meters high, filled with diffused and soft sunlight. The first impression is that you are in the world of the future with white walls, black soundproofing panels, unusual architecture and triangular patterns that permeate the entire building.
We were greeted with a pleasant smile and led through the turnstiles. In the center of the large hall, we received brief instructions that photos and videos are not welcome here, as we will be shown prototypes and developments that have not yet entered the market.
The central staircase is considered a unique structure in the office. It is called "the heart of the building", since employees from any corner of the building must walk to the center of the office and walk up the stairs to move to other floors. Thanks to this arrangement, the staircase with special platforms has become a place of people's intersection, encouraging them to raise issues important for business development, make appointments on the run, and just say hello. In addition, all common areas, from lounge cafes to restrooms, are located near the stairs, which stimulates a lot of employee traffic at any time of the day.
We were escorted to the third floor, into a fully blackout presentation room with huge screens and with an assembly of the world's best systems, including a compact supercomputer powered by their GPU. We were presented with the latest processors and new projects based on artificial intelligence and self-driving vehicles. They gave me a 3 by 3 cm chip processor capable of processing 30 trillion operations per second.
On the top floor of the office, we were treated to a delicious lunch from the chef and we were taken to the tour around the Shannon’s restaurant, where employees can hold their meetings and dinners, as well as bring guests for informal communication. I asked why the restaurant was called “Shannon's”, and the answer surprised me and made me laugh. It turns out that when the new office was designed, when considering plans and proposals, NVIDIA Chief Executive Officer David Shannon "showed an attitude" and said that he would never approve a restaurant serving alcoholic beverages in the company's office.
However, knowing Jensen's character and influence in his company, it was naive to think that the restaurant will not exist. As a result, the restaurant was built and named “Shannon's” in honor of David Shannon.
Such actions reflect the whole essence of NVIDIA' s leader and its' management model. All 14 thousand employees of the company speak of him extremely positively, admiring his work efficiency and ability to organize people around.
Jensen's talent is mostly expressed not only in the success of the current business, but also in building a flat management structure, where any employee has direct access to him personally. Jensen regularly holds open events for employees, where he talks about the company's strategy and gives the opportunity to ask any questions. About 300 people attend the event, and the same number of people join online.

There are many legends about Jensen's charisma and explosive nature. Some of them are true some are exaggerated. But the fact is that he managed to build an amazing company, and this fact is beyond dispute.
One of the main tasks of a leader of this level is to inspire people by their own example and motivate them to perform. This is what Jensen Huang masters better than anyone else does in the world and this is why he received the award last year.