Somethings to take away from the interview of Tim Cook (Apple CEO) and Charlie Rose

Tim Cook in his interview with Charlie Rose in PBS gives viewers the rare chance of the man behind Apple. Here we can take-away some lessons that will help business owners.

Time Cook as many people will know is the Apple CEO and took over this position from the late Steve Jobs in August of 2011. Since then he has continued the tradition of the company’s philosophy of great products, innovation and world’s best with much success. Here, Tim Cook speaks frankly with Charlie Rose (2014) on his position, history and what it was like to take the helm of Apple. We as business owners can take away valuable lessons from this insightful interview. I have provided a list of pertinent questions and answers that could be useful to business owners.

  1. What was it like to take over the great Steve Jobs?

This was not a specific question asked of Tim Cook, but I am just generalizing for the interest of our readers. Tim Cook replied that he had previous discussions with Steve Jobs and Steve had wanted him to take over his position. He was surprised and thought it was a bit early since he felt that Steve Jobs was going to bounce back from his health issues. Nevertheless, Steve in all his wisdom gave him some tips. Tim also says that not one day goes by when he does not think about Steve and his office still remains intact in the Apple building. He continues to work on the very foundation that Steve Jobs left behind and says that he is in the hearts of everyone that works in Apple.

What we can take-away:

Steve told Tim not to emulate him and this is important to most business folks. You will not be within your elements or enjoy it for that matter if you don’t follow your own gut feelings and intuition. He also explains that it is the indifference in all of us that makes us strive for greater things.

2. What is your current competition?

Here Charlie Rose is trying to quiz him to find out what competitive edge that Apple has and what fears they have. Presumably for the viewers of this interview. He goes on to say that there are many products that we would like to bring to market but we just cannot and explains that all of Apples products can be laid out on this very table.

What we can take-away:

Here, I don’t find Steve hiding any facts, he stands by Apple’s great philosophy of innovation, great products and time to market. He also explains with a short story that the iPad concept and development was around long before the iPhone and they disbanded that for a while to focus purely on the iPhone. What we can take away from here is that, it is much better to focus on a few things and be the best at it. Do not get frazzled or distracted by the competition.

3. What is it that makes Apple so great?

Here Charlie Rose attempts to narrow down Apple’s visions and its vision of the future. Tim replies that they have many new things in the pipeline but he is unwilling to disclose them for obvious reasons but only a handful will hit the market. They are very selective in their purpose and goals and encourages creative thought throughout their enterprise. He admits to Charlie that he can do one thing very well which is ‘switch out the noise’ from all the things presented to him and says that one needs to do that to be a good leader.

What we can take-away:

A great leader needs to see the light through the weeds despite the many noises heard ie. from the Wall-Street herd of earnings report etc. The qualities that Tim Cook embraces are the makings of a great leader.

4. Change and differences are good:

Here Tim Cook describes the early days when Steve Jobs coaxed him out of Compaq (1998) . In hindsight he says at that time, there was great vision for storage, devices, hardware and unlimited ceiling for growth. When Steve Jobs came to him, his idea of the iMac was far different from the crowd and deep inside he knew that was the way to go and accepted a position in Apple. And we all know that rest is history.

What we can take-away:

The problem with many of us is that we can get distracted with the way the crowd is moving and not see beyond this. Although, it is a good thing to follow the upward trend ie. bread and butter money, one must always peer into the future and take necessary action.

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