As much as many of us use the internet, nature’s information superhighway, to our benefit, the internet has a dark and seedy side filled with propaganda, misleading information, chaos and anarchy. Tread carefully. It’s a jungle out there.
Every so often we read an article that Apple CEO Tim Cook’s days are numbered, that he needs or must be replaced for Apple to survive. English being the complex language it is, anyone can make an argument for anything– regardless of how ridiculous– and have it spread throughout the world in minutes.
Says Who? Exactly!
Opinions are easier to manufacture and distribute than facts, unless you’re using alternative facts, then it’s about the same. Nobody in general says “Tim Cook Needs To Be Replaced.” Wait. What? Says who? Exactly.
In an article written by no one in particular– writers should use a byline to enhance credibility, rather than hide in the shadows– Apple’s CEO is skewered and compared to Microsoft’s former CEO, Steve Ballmer. There isn’t much to compare. Cook speaks in complete sentences. Apple under Cook’s reign has prospered and grown. You cannot say that about Ballmer’s Microsoft.
Here are the basic arguments which, without analysis or comparison, or even a look at a list of criteria for what makes a successful CEO, could be the prologue to the last days of Tim Cook.
Under Tim Cook, Apple became the most valuable, most profitable, and most well-known company in the world.
Fair enough. Start with facts that are unassailable.
But Tim Cook simply inherited the success created by Steve Jobs, who left him with the iPhone, iPad, iMac, and the whole Apple ecosystem.
Uh, huh. Sure. On his death bed Apple co-founder Steve Jobs found Cook’s name during a Google search and anointed the homeless and unemployed engineer as CEO. No? Well, how about the truth. Cook was acting CEO on numerous occasions. Cook was one of Jobs’ early hires. Cook was the engineer that made Apple’s train– ostensibly driven by Jobs– arrive on time. Cook was at Jobs side during all of Apple’s successes from Jobs’ return to his death.
Look at any chart regarding Apple’s number of successes and you’ll see the big jumps occurred after Jobs died.
Assessment of the new products and projects unveiled under Tim Cook reflects a lack of vision and innovation required by a successful tech company CEO.
A similar assessment of Apple’s failed products and projects unveiled under Steve Jobs will show the opposite of his carefully crafted history of vision and innovation, none of which are requirements of a successful tech company. Google is considered successful but about 90-percent of the company’s successes– in the form of revenue and profits– come from the same old same old. Advertising. Just like another successful technology company. Facebook.
To be fair, iPod, iTunes, iPhone all changed their respective worlds. For awhile. iPod is on life support. iPhone won’t be the world’s best selling consumer product forever (nothing ever is). But Watch has come on strong in its second year, AirPods are still backordered, and if engineer Tim Cook can engineer a glucose monitor in Watch then such silly comparisons will end. For awhile.
Tim Cook in many ways is identical to Steve Ballmer, and for the same reasons should be replaced.
This comparison lacks the reasons, but let’s cover a few that do not compare well. Microsoft was wildly profitable under Ballmer but failed to diversify even after spending nearly $100-billion and the disasters that were Windows XP, Windows 7, and whatever else came along. He wasn’t fire because Microsoft wasn’t profitable. He was fired because he couldn’t see the future, ignored the iPhone and the mobile device revolution, and only made it to CEO because co-founder Bill Gates wanted to spend some of his ill-gotten gains to get a paid for trip to heaven.
On the other hand, Cook was and remains the engineer architect of how Apple operates; a company whose investments have paid big dividends– literally– and not only grown revenue and profits, but continues to run an efficient operation. No large and complex technology company is without problems, but before one votes to kick Tim Cook out the door, how about these few thoughts first; 1) what’s the criteria for success? and, 2) who gets to decide (Apple’s board of directors)? Or, an unnamed writer from a hedge company that is short on Apple and long on competitors?
The last days of Tim Cook could be here and we would never know it, but with the stock moving into uncharted territory, revenue and profits at record levels, and a few game changing products being rumored and not denied, I think there are more days left in Cook’s calendar at Apple.