Jobs' departure won't diminish Apple's brand

Jobs' departure won't diminish Apple's brand

Summary: As Steve Jobs steps down as CEO of Apple, Inc., the immediate assumption would be that this will ruin Apple's image and brand. That assumption would be wrong.

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TOPICS: Apple, CXO, IT Employment
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If you haven't heard already, Apple CEO and co-founder Steve Jobs has officially stepped down as the chief executive and recommended acting CEO Tim Cook to fully replace him.

Naturally, many investors, analysts and Macheads are wondering what this might mean for the future of Apple. The Cupertino, Calif.-based company has been on such a roll lately that has seen it become the only major competitor in the tablet market and one of the only tech companies to actually be turning a profit off of consumer technology this year.

A lot of this can be attributed to the popularity of Jobs. Who else can garner as much applause and a standing ovation every time he steps out in public onto the keynote stage dressed in a now-signature black turtleneck?

However, to assume that Jobs' resignation will lead to a downturn for Apple is unfounded. It will be a shift in the company's history, certainly. But it has already been proven this year that Apple's momentum can continue as Jobs steps back from the company. (And, FYI, he's not completely gone from Apple as he'll still be serving as chairman of the board if approved, which will undoubtedly happen.)

For example, Cook actually stepped up to the plate as acting CEO earlier this year when Jobs went on medical leave in January. Apple has since turned out blowout earnings the last two quarters. Although iPad shipments were slightly lower in April than expected (which were still nothing to cry about), the company propelled to outstanding earnings and shipment numbers in the third fiscal quarter, propelled by the new tablet and a smartphone that is over one year old already.

As for Jobs, well this almost makes look like a hero for sticking it out this long given his well-known health problems that have plagued him for almost a decade. That is sure to stick in the minds of consumers and investors alike as to how committed Apple's employees are to its company.

Although the blog is known for its tongue-in-cheek humor, Gizmodo goes so far as to praise Jobs as "greatest businessman, CEO and product developer of our era," adding that he has become "an icon and idol who has made this world we live in a better place." Maybe that's a bit over the top, but it doesn't change the sentiment shared by many.

Of course, it would be wrong to hold Cook up to these kinds of standards from the get-go. Even more famous tech bigwigs like Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg can't compete with the aura around Jobs. Thus, the more that anyone tries to compare Cook to Jobs' image, that in itself would tarnish Apple's brand more than anything else.

Plus, just because Jobs is leaving does not mean that Apple doesn't have any talent left. Just look at iPod-designer Jonathan Ive, Apple's senior vice president of industrial design for one example.

The simplest thing to do for anyone who wants to see Apple's continued success is let Cook have his own persona and image, and then watch Apple continue to sell millions of iPads and iPhones galore.

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Topics: Apple, CXO, IT Employment

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47 comments
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  • RE: Jobs' departure won't diminish Apple's brand

    Well, it's NOT about Apple making more and more money, it's about Apple continuing to innovate. That still has to be seen. Tim Cook has been doing nothing but sue sue sue...
    tatiGmail
    • RE: Jobs' departure won't diminish Apple's brand

      There has been a lot of litigation in the air at apple
      jamesweld@...
  • POLL: What do you think will happen to Apple?

    http://www.wepolls.com/p/2073012
    crizCraig
  • I agree with you, nothing will change at Apple

    Jobs has had nothing to do with the success at Apple. Apple's most successful years have been while Jobs was gone.

    Bye bye Jobs, we won't even notice you are gone.
    toddybottom
    • You don't know how to read an annual report, do you?

      @toddybottom
      matthew_maurice
      • Yes I do. Obviously you don't.

        @matthew_maurice
        Wait, you aren't truly naive enough to believe that Jobs has had anything to do with running Apple for the last few years, are you?
        toddybottom
      • RE: Jobs' departure won't diminish Apple's brand

        @toddybottom
        I am a business student. Let me teach you the role of a CEO.
        1. Provide a vision for the company
        2. Make sure people directly under you are doing their job

        This is by far the most important job in any corporation. Apple's best engineer could disappear overnight and nobody would care, but without a good leader the company breaks down.

        Sure some leaders will go above and beyond and do more, but the best leaders know how to delegate. That's why you can be a great business leader without moving a finger. With all that said, your assertion that Steve is nothing more than a figurehead is ridiculous.
        anono
      • a report helped made jucier by

        @matthew_maurice -

        http://www.zdnet.com/blog/government/is-apples-suicide-factory-outsourcing-to-even-cheaper-chinese-peasants/9537


        For all the frothing the media does over Jobs, nobody should forget that (a) labor creates all wealth and (b) what those workers are enduring to help make Apple that much more special, since they pocket the difference in labor costs to help boost "profit".

        http://www.pcworld.com/article/197312/foxconn_plans_safety_nets_may_raise_pay_after_12th_suicide.html

        Oh, if "free market" was real, a paradigm that states lower costs means that more can purchase, as costs to build Macs (esp. the Mac Pro) go down, why don't the prices go down to follow suit? Like "trickle down economics", the "free market" paradigm isn't taken to its full concept. Not forgetting that supply-side economics pretends workers must get their money from the Easter Bunny because every corporation out there is demanding more work done for the same pay, or even less pay. When workers have less to spend... maybe that's why the banks needed bailing out...

        http://motherjones.com/kevin-drum/2010/01/vicious-cycle-stagnant-wages
        HypnoToad72
      • RE: Jobs' departure won't diminish Apple's brand

        @matthew_maurice -

        Not to mention how the annual report is made even juicier:

        @matthew_maurice -<br><br><a href="http://www.zdnet.com/blog/government/is-apples-suicide-factory-outsourcing-to-even-cheaper-chinese-peasants/9537" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">http://www.zdnet.com/blog/government/is-apples-suicide-factory-outsourcing-to-even-cheaper-chinese-peasants/9537</a><br><br><br>For all the frothing the media does over Jobs, nobody should forget that (a) labor creates all wealth and (b) what those workers are enduring to help make Apple that much more special, since they pocket the difference in labor costs to help boost "profit".<br><br><a href="http://www.pcworld.com/article/197312/foxconn_plans_safety_nets_may_raise_pay_after_12th_suicide.html" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">http://www.pcworld.com/article/197312/foxconn_plans_safety_nets_may_raise_pay_after_12th_suicide.html</a><br><br>Oh, if "free market" was real, a paradigm that states lower costs means that more can purchase, as costs to build Macs (esp. the Mac Pro) go down, why don't the prices go down to follow suit? Like "trickle down economics", the "free market" paradigm isn't taken to its full concept. Not forgetting that supply-side economics pretends workers must get their money from the Easter Bunny because every corporation out there is demanding more work done for the same pay, or even less pay. When workers have less to spend... maybe that's why the banks needed bailing out...<br><br><a href="http://motherjones.com/kevin-drum/2010/01/vicious-cycle-stagnant-wages" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">http://motherjones.com/kevin-drum/2010/01/vicious-cycle-stagnant-wages</a>
        HypnoToad72
    • Little will change because of what Steve has accomplished.

      @toddybottom

      If you can't understand that, you know very little about Apple's business.
      Bruizer
      • Little will change because Steve had nothing to do with Apple's success

        @Bruizer
        If you can't understand that, you know very little about Apple's business.
        toddybottom
      • I normally don't argue with idiots.

        @toddybottom They bring you down to their level and beat you with their experience, but this time I'll make an exception. <br><br>Love Steve Jobs or hate him, you simply can't deny that he took over a moribund company in the midst of a serious cash-crunch, made a deal with long-time competitor that brought in a big pile of money, ended stupid clone licensing deals, and then revamped its entire product line starting with the fundamentals of the OS. At the same time, he prodded the industry into abandoning obsolete technologies (remember diskettes?), moved his entire product line to a completely different processor architecture, radically altered the smartphone market, and took tablet computing from niche market to a broad consumer play. These aren't things that <i>just happened</i> while Jobs was running Apple, they were things the he, <b>personally</b>, drove forward.<br><br>And it's not to say that he was perfect. Several of Steve's pet projects turned out to be stinkers. The Mac Cube was clearly his ideal computing form, but it was expensive, slow, and totally impractical for the majority of the market. Again, these weren't things that happened while he was there, they are things he personally managed.<br><br>So, while you can argue if the company he ran made the best computers, you can't argue that he ran Apple in his own way, and that by extension the accomplishments,and failures, of that company are his as well.
        matthew_maurice
      • @toddybottom: I think most people understand Apple better than you.

        I am guessing I understand substantially more of how Steve has impacted Apple's path of the last 14 years than you ever dreamed if you really believe:

        <i>"because Steve had nothing to do with Apple's success."</i>

        Heck, I bet you share that opinion with a single person. You.

        It takes a little mind to miss the direction that Steve put the company on. From a disorganized collection of little fiefdoms (much like I see Google and MS acting now) with hundreds of side projects all in an effort to be <i>different</i> but not <i>better</i> to a company with solid foundations where there is a concerted effort to actually create a system of products all using a similar foundation of technology.

        Steve is responsible for transforming Apple from a computer company into a Systems company. So ask your self: <b>Can you honestly say that Apple would be where it is today if any of Steve's predecessors (Sculley , Spindler or Amelio) were at the helm?</b>

        Yea, he is a typically A type personality, perfectionist and bet harder than heck to work for or with because he expects others to be like him. Does not change the fact that he turned around Apple from a slow floundering.
        Bruizer
      • RE: Jobs' departure won't diminish Apple's brand

        @toddybottom
        I am a business student. Let me teach you the role of a CEO.
        1. Provide a vision for the company
        2. Make sure people directly under you are doing their job

        This is by far the most important job in any corporation. Apple's best engineer could disappear overnight and nobody would care, but without a good leader the company breaks down.

        Sure some leaders will go above and beyond and do more, but the best leaders know how to delegate. That's why you can be a great business leader without moving a finger. With all that said, your assertion that Steve is nothing more than a figurehead is ridiculoous.
        anono
    • RE: Jobs' departure won't diminish Apple's brand

      I wouldn't call the Performa an excellent computer for it's time and that was when Jobs wasn't there. He brought out the Imac
      jamesweld@...
    • RE: Jobs' departure won't diminish Apple's brand

      @toddybottom

      I am now fully convinced you are a sad individual toddybottom (aka NonZealot). Who in there right mind would think Jobs had nothing to do with the success of Apple?
      dave95.
      • I thought he seemed familiar

        @dave95.

        Glad to see I am not the only one to recognize NZ style.
        oncall
      • I have been thinking NZ Gone, toddybottom showed up.

        @dave95.

        Coincidence? I don't think so.
        Bruizer
    • instead

      @toddybottom
      of repeating your nonsensical statements why don't you actually back them up with some facts? we'll wait here.
      sportmac
  • Apple won't be any different

    @matthew_maurice
    toddybottom