The interview follows a range of allegations and reports this week about Bill Gates’ workplace behavior at Microsoft and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. CNN has not independently confirmed the allegations.
A Microsoft spokesperson on Sunday confirmed to CNN Business that the company “received a concern in the latter half of 2019 that Bill Gates sought to initiate an intimate relationship with a company employee in the year 2000.”
“A committee of the Board reviewed the concern, aided by an outside law firm, to conduct a thorough investigation,” the spokesperson said. “Throughout the investigation, Microsoft provided extensive support to the employee who raised the concern.”
Nadella said on Friday that Microsoft’s review of a concern that was raised nearly two decades after the incident took place speaks to the company’s culture.
“Anyone can raise any issue, even an issue from 20 years ago. We will investigate it, take action to the satisfaction of the person who raised it; we have no forced arbitrations,” Nadella said. “I feel that we have created an environment that allows us to really drive that everyday improvement in our diversity and inclusion culture, which I think is a super important thing.”
He added that the company has had a policy requiring employees to disclose workplace relationships in place since 2006.
“Overall, the power dynamic in the workplace is not something that can be abused in any form,” Nadella said. “The most important thing is for us to make sure that everybody is comfortable in being able to raise any issues they see and for us to be able to fully investigate it.”