Mike Hayes, VMware

Chief Operating Officer

Mike Hayes Biography

Mike Hayes is VMware’s Chief Operating Officer, where he is responsible for worldwide business operations and acceleration of the Company’s SaaS transition. Mike leads with a passion for driving agility, excellence and meaning in service of customers’ missions.

Before VMware, Hayes served as Senior Vice President and Head of Strategic Operations for Cognizant Technologies where he ran a $2B P&L for global financial services. Mike also served as a Chief of Staff to the CEO and COO roles at Bridgewater Associates, an investment management firm.

Prior to joining the private sector, Hayes spent 20 years in the U.S. Navy SEALs, where his last role was Commanding Officer of SEAL Team TWO. He served in the Bosnia, Kosovo, Iraq, and Afghanistan conflicts, including ten months as the Commander of a 2,000-person Special Operations Task Force in southeastern Afghanistan. Hayes was selected as a White House Fellow, served as Director, of Defense Policy and Strategy at the National Security Council, and was the Deputy Commander for Special Operations in Anbar Province, Iraq. His military decorations include the Bronze Star for valor in combat in Iraq, a Bronze Star for Afghanistan, and the Defense Superior Service Medal from the White House.

Hayes authored the bestseller “Never Enough: A Navy SEAL Commander on Living a Life of Excellence, Agility, and Meaning," and donates all profits to pay off mortgages for Gold Star families (fallen service members). He holds a Master’s degree from Harvard’s Kennedy School and a Bachelor’s degree from Holy Cross College. He is on the boards of Immuta, a data governance company, and the National Medal of Honor Museum. Hayes is also a lifetime member of the Council on Foreign Relations.