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Oral History Interview with Jim Goodnight, July 22, 1999. Interview I-0073. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007).
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  • Abstract
    Jim Goodnight describes how he and some colleagues at North Carolina State University turned their number-crunching program into the billion-dollar global corporation SAS. Goodnight describes the slow, steady growth of the company under his laid-back managerial philosophy, some of the important decisions he made at the company's helm, and the past, present, and future of industry in North Carolina.
    Excerpts
  • Segregation did not totally taint the recent history of the South
  • SAS grows from an on-campus project to an independent company
  • Clear division of labor helps SAS succeed
  • Cutting costs to ensure success
  • Technological evolution of SAS
  • Laid-back management style
  • Hiring employees is all about finding a good fit
  • Integrating user feedback
  • Climbing the language barrier during international expansion
  • Fast-changing technology sector does not allow long-term planning
  • Technology speeds up work process
  • Goodnight's goals for SAS
  • Physical expansion accompanies business growth
  • Perks keep employees loyal and present
  • Business leader gets involved in promoting education
  • Ambivalence about business-political partnerships
  • Persistence of traditional industries despite information sector growth
  • Politicians won't develop infrastructure to match growth
  • Goodnight is an old-school CEO
  • Learn More
  • Finding aid to the Southern Oral History Program Collection
  • Database of all Southern Oral History Program Collection interviews
  • Subjects
  • Industries--North Carolina--History--20th century
  • International business enterprises--North Carolina
  • Research Triangle Park Region (N.C.)
  • SAS Institute
  • Computer software industry--North Carolina
  • Employee fringe benefits--North Carolina
  • Goodnight, James
  • The Southern Oral History Program transcripts presented here on Documenting the American South undergo an editorial process to remove transcription errors. Texts may differ from the original transcripts held by the Southern Historical Collection.

    Funding from the Institute for Museum and Library Services supported the electronic publication of this title.