Michael Dell is no Steve Jobs

“Michael Dell, who conceived a new way to sell a then-hot product, is returning to Dell,” Marek Fuchs reports for TheStreet.com.

Fuchs reports, “The one misleadingly positive mistake made by much of the business media on Dell’s return was, by way of historical context, to segue right into mentions of Steve Jobs’ historic return to Apple. From the wire services on, this was done in automatic-pilot mode.”

Fuchs writes, “For example, said the Associated Press: ‘In 1997, co-founder Steve Jobs came back as CEO to the then-struggling maker of Macintosh computers and quickly transformed it into a leading consumer electronics maker with the iMac computers and the iPod music players.’ It is not an apt comparison.”

“Jobs is one of the only chief executives who probably hits the triple crown of genius: entrepreneurial, managerial and self-promotional. He came back and innovated, promoted and (to a lesser extent) managed Apple’s way back to prominence. Moreover, he was one of the few entrepreneurial geniuses who proved that genius could strike more than once,” Fuchs writes.

Fuchs writes, “Dell realized that direct sales were the way to go with computers. However, that was really the only evidence of the sort of entrepreneurial genius that his company needs from here. At this point, with computers such a commodity, his great entrepreneurial call from long ago won’t be enough to save the day. His managerial brilliance will work to shore up the company’s faded service reputation a bit, but it’s too little too late.”

Full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Hey, it’s not too late to for Michael Dell to – all together now – shut down the company and give the money back to the shareholders!

Related articles:
BusinessWeek: Welcome back, Michael Dell – don’t get too comfortable – February 01, 2007
Rollins out as beleaguered Dell’s CEO, replaced by Michael Dell immediately – January 31, 2007
Fortune: Michael Dell reiterates he’d love to sell Apple’s Mac OS X if only Jobs would license – January 22, 2007
Total eclipse of Michael Dell goes off as predicted – January 10, 2007
SEC starts formal probe of beleaguered Dell – November 16, 2006
Apple does it again: New Macbook Pros much cheaper than Dell – October 25, 2006
Dell feels the heat from Apple – October 04, 2006
The Motley Fool: ‘Intel to Dell: you guys stink’ – September 28, 2006
Beleaguered Dell’s OS-limited PC sales ‘declining rapidly below expectations’ – analyst – September 21, 2006
Fortune compares Mac vs. Dell: ‘you’ll get more for your money with Apple’ – September 11, 2006
PC box assemblers like Dell and others wish Apple would license Mac OS X – August 31, 2006
AP: Time to think different, Apple Mac beats Dell on price, software compatibility, and more – August 23, 2006
Dell profit falls almost in half; announces informal SEC probe – August 18, 2006
Dell cannot compete with Apple’s new Mac Pro price or feature set – August 15, 2006
Bear Stearns: Apple’s new Mac Pro, Xserve pricing well below comparable Dell systems – August 09, 2006
Dell warns of earnings miss; shares plunge 15% – July 21, 2006
Survey shows big jump in consumer interest in buying Apple Mac; Dell takes steep slide – July 06, 2006
Dell warns 1Q earnings will miss mark; shares tumble – May 08, 2006
Apple passes Dell in market value – May 02, 2006
InformationWeek: Apple Mac run Mac OS X, Windows, and Linux; Dell and HP should be concerned – May 01, 2006
Dude, you got a Dell? What are you, stupid? Only Apple Macs run both Mac OS X and Windows! – April 05, 2006
Apple Mac is #1 in European education market, pushes Dell down into second place – February 03, 2006


  1. Back in November, I blogged about “Why Dell doesn’t matter”


    Everyone I talked to said that I was dead wrong, but the article above is saying pretty much the same thing. PC clones are commodities and there is no real value in a company who just sells what everyone else does. Dell will be a distant memory by the end of the decade.

    Dell is nothing more than one of the last survivors of the PC mail-order wars.

  2. Was in big Dallas shopping mall at noon today. Of all things, I saw a waiting line around the Dell kiosk there. Went closer and found Dell sales staff with clip boards taking orders. Listened in and heard, of all things, giddy enthusiasm about Vista, of all things, and common Americans ordering new Dell boxes to run it on.

    Been reading posts on this site this week and was convinced that Vista meant the death of PC, especially Dell. Would someone please explain what in the world is going on – people buying new PCs to run Vista. Dell PCs.

    Of all things.

  3. And how did Mr. Dell say he was going to save the company? “Innovate” supply chain and assembly processes…… Isn’t that one trick pony dead?

    Like RC said, can’t out cheap China. Dell will be gone by 2010

  4. Another reason that the comparison doesn’t fly is that Michael Dell didn’t actually ever leave the company! He just hasn’t been the CEO. Hardly the same thing. SJ had no part of anything that happened at Apple between 1986 and 1996. Michael Dell has been there the whole time, and while Kevin Rollins was the CEO running the day to day, he was still a part of the decision making. He is absolutely not a Steve Jobs, but the circumstances are nothing alike either.

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