Apple’s Cook Reveals His Own Leadership Style

Apple LogoAt Apple’s memorial to Steve Jobs, new CEO Tim Cook revealed some advice Jobs had given him:

Among his last advice he had for me, and for all of you, was to never ask what he would do. ‘Just do what’s right.’

Cook ably took the helm during Jobs’ multiple medical leaves of absence, and though he has vowed that Apple will not change, it’s evident he has a different leadership style. Many aspects of the company are not expected to change, but The Wall Street Journal, says Cook has been putting his own mark on the company.  In particular, Cook has dealt with administrative matters that held little interest for Jobs.

In that vein, Network World quotes Charles King, principal analyst at Pund-IT, saying:

You could say that Cook provides Apple a skill set very similar to what Mark Hurd offered HP — meaning the company should continue to be very efficiently and profitably run.

Among the changes:

  • Cook’s sending more company-wide e-mails that address Apple employees as “Team.”
  • Cook set up a program to match employee donations to charity.
  • He restructured Apple’s largely independent education division, dividing it into a sales team and a marketing team and folding them into the larger organization. The popularity of the iPad in schools is making that an important area of focus.
  • He promoted Vice President Eddy Cue to Apple’s senior VP of Internet software and services, putting the former iTunes manager in charge of the iAds business.
  • He’s more open than Jobs to using Apple’s $81.6 billion in cash and cash equivalents for dividends or a stock buyback.

Cult of Mac reports that Apple named Steve Cano to be the new head of retail, filling the post of Ron Johnson, who’s now the president and CEO of  J.C. Penney. Cano is described as Johnson’s long-time lieutenant and Apple’s first retail store employee.

Though “not a product guy,” Cook is expected to maintain the company’s laser focus on product design and development, and its culture of intense secrecy. He’s said to be more open with shareholders and customers, and others often consulted him on how to approach Jobs. Roger Kay, president of Endpoint Technologies Associates, believes “his diplomacy may smooth over things that Jobs made difficult.”

Post a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>