Article on Steve Jobs

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Article on Steve Jobs

  1. 1. 1 The Show Must Go On If you are a genius, people do not expect you to make big mistakes. Steve Jobs must havebeen fully aware when he was diagnosed with cancer, several years back, that his company wasat risk. He knew well that his persona sometimes overshadowed Apple’s halo, and to let thishappen would be a hell of a mistake! Having a person as a brand is a very risky strategy because people make mistakes thatcan go public (Merriam, 2011). Take the examples of OJ Simpson and Tiger Woods. Both ofthem ruined their brands because of their behaviors(Flanagan, 2011). Being human also meansthat you will die someday. What will happen to the brand then? Die as well? “I don’t think so,”Jobs might have told himself when he thought about these things. Observers did not like thesubstandard corporate communication approach thatlackedclarity and consistency about Jobs’ health condition. Some of them saw Apple and Jobs astwo sides of the same coin. This perception was established because of what happened during thetenure of John Scully who led the company from 1983 to 1993 (So you want to buy apresident?,n.d.) During that time, sales, profit, and share price plummeted (Merriam, 2011).There was also a lot of discussion about “Jobs premium” in Apple’s share price, which someestimated at around 20 per cent (Apple, Inc.: Transparency in corporate statements about theCEO,n.d.). Other viewers had their eyes on what washappening internally. They sawthatJobswasactually implementing a succession plan by grooming Mr. Cook (After Steve Jobs, whatnow for Apple, 2011). Tim Cook, the expected successor, took charge each time Jobs was away from thepicture. And he did a pretty good job. He managed the company for two months, back in 2004,when Jobs had to go for cancer treatment. He took charge again in 2009 when Jobs had a livertransplant, and amazingly the share price rose by 62 per cent during that period.When Jobsresigned last month, the share price responded with a brief5 per cent drop in price(After SteveJobs, what now for Apple, 2011). This means that the majority of investors believes in thismanand trusts Jobs’ succession plan put in place. “It was a little murky for awhile, but now it is clearthat Tim Cook was tipped to be the next CEO all along. Apple identified him as a talented leaderfrom within the company a long time ago, and had been grooming Mr. Cook for the CEO job”(Weidner, 2011). However, having a good succession plan is not enough for the company to thrive. Theentire organization has to live and breathe Jobs’ entrepreneurial spirit, dedication, and focus on
  2. 2. 2innovation in order to keep the momentum. “A company is dependent on its ability toinstitutionalize that genius in the corporate DNA. And Apple shows every sign of having donethat,” says Terry Connelly, dean of the Ageno School of Business at Gloden Gate University inSan Francisco (After Steve Jobs, what now for Apple?, 2011). A review done byGlassdoor, a career website, shows that Apple’s employees are sohappy about their company and its visionary leader that they called him “the Thomas Edison ofthis century.” (The minister of magic steps down, 2011).It seems that the legendary CEOsucceeded in creating an organizational culture that will outlive him. The proof came recentlywith an announcement made by Millward Brown, a leading market research agency, saying thatApple led the list as the worlds most valuable brand, with an estimated value of more than $153billion(Apple becomes world’s most valuable brand, ending Google’s four-year term at the top,says WPP’S BrandZ, 2011) Apple has taken the route of other mature companies that crossed the 100 years mark andremained strong. Thomas Edison and Henry Forddid not try to develop great leaders likethemselves to carry the flag, neither did Steve Jobs. They all decided to build great companies. Inthis regard, Jobs has done a good job! ReferencesAfter Steve Jobs, what now for Apple. (2011, August 25). Retrieved September 24, 2011, from http://www.cbc.ca/news/business/story/2011/08/25/jobs-apple-future.htmlApple becomes world’s most valuable brand, ending Google’s four-year term at the top, says WPP’S BrandZ. (2011, May 8). Retrieved September 26, 2011, from http://www.millwardbrown.com/global/news/pressreleases/PressReleaseDetails/11-05- 08/Apple_Becomes_World_s_Most_Valuable_Brand_Ending_Google_s_Four-Year_Term_at_the_Top_says_WPP_S_BrandZ.aspxApple, Inc.: Transparency in corporate statements about the CEO, (n.d.) Falangan, B. (2011, April 21). You catch a falling star at your peril. Retrieved September 26, 2011, from http://www.thenational.ae/thenationalconversation/industry-insights/media/you-catch-a-falling-star-at-your-perilMerriam, L. (2011, January 23). Steve Jobs and Apple’s future brand value. Retrieved September 24, 2011, from http://www.business2community.com/mobile-apps/steve-jobs-and-apple%E2%80%99s-future-brand-value-010321PBS.(n.d.)So you want to buy a president? Retrieved September 26, 2011, from http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/president/players/sculley.htmlThe minister of magic steps down. (2011, August 27). Retrieved September 25, 2011, fromhttp://www.economist.com/node/21526948/commentsWeidner, D. (2011, September 16). A for Apple, F for Yahoo: Grading succession. Retrieved September 25, 2011, from http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424053111904491704576571151430695150.html
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