How is Tim Cook doing taking over from the legendary Steve Jobs?

“Tim Cook officially became Apple Inc. (AAPL) CEO at the end of 2011,” Bram de Haas writes for Seeking Alpha.

“Because of his predecessor’s illness, the legendary Steve Jobs, I’m performing this analysis as though Cook started in early 2011. According to this BBC article Jobs took a leave of absence, but was still involved in all major decisions, at that time. You can easily make the case Cook only started at the end of 2011,” de Haas writes. “I don’t want to argue against that point of view. I’ve analyzed the data from the start of 2011 and you can make the final decision how to interpret it.”

“Cook is building on the foundations that were laid by Jobs. Sometimes he is portrayed as fumbling away the great company Jobs built or at least not given any more credit than being a decent care taker of the dominant tech company,” de Haas writes. “Is that really true? …Contrary to popular belief Cook is not just an able care taker of the Jobs legacy… The data is telling me Tim Cook is a pretty great CEO.”

Read more in the full article here.

37 Comments

    1. Yes, but cautionary: such products as Mac Pro and iPad Air took years to develop, which means that those are started under Jobs.

      We can truly judge Cook only in about 2017 or later, at least five years after Jobs going away.

  1. He might as well be Apple’s Obama. His decision to turn iOS into an abstract painting was not funny. I am trying hard to get used to it, but it is honestly just too hard.

    1. Could not agree with you more. iOMess 7 is the worst UI redesign since Windows Metro. Thank God it’s been jailbroken so I can theme this horrific looking mess…

    2. Apple’s Obama. My God, you’re really beyond help, aren’t you? Pull the plug- you are incapable of living a meaningful life, or of uttering a meaningful thought. Really, really quite pathetic.

  2. TIm is a good guy and a good manager. The problem is he is terrible at hiring people. The second tier of managers that have been hired by Tim are awful….people whose names you probably don’t know and who don’t show up on stage (although Phil Schiller is an ego-maniacal j#$k you do know). These people are destroying Apple. They all come from the outside, do not understand the culture and are applying what they learned at Cisco, IBM, ATT, etc. to Apple. Employee morale is at its lowest ever and people are leaving in droves! Since I left, I literally get dozens of phone calls a WEEK from former co-workers begging me to find them a job at my new employer. I still love the products, the company, however, is in serious trouble. Flame me if you want but unless you have worked there (and I’m not talking about retail) you don’t know what you are talking about…..

    1. We have to take your word you worked at Apple when Shamdung shills are lurking about precisely to spread such bad Appleness? Don’t think so. You’re the first I’ve heard of such winter “discontent.” I would think this would be something hard to hide. You may also be relating from somewhere very small within Apple. In a 2012 CareerBliss survey employees rated Apple as a happy place to work and Apple scored 3.94 out of 5. Not in the top 10 companies rated but far from being an unhappy place to work.

    2. Are you, by any chance, working at Samsung now? Because if you are, you may…uh…how to put this sensitively…a paid Samsung shill. We don’t take kindly to those types around here…

      1. So I expected this from those outside the company. Dissent is not treated well here. I worked at Apple for 20 years in multiple divisions. Leaving was the hardest decision I ever made. Despite whatever “CareerBliss” is, the morale is bad….seriously. No, I do not work for Samsung but the jumping to that conclusion when I am trying to be honest on this forum is troubling. I am not a troll. I have been an avid reader of MDN for years. As I stated above….the products are great, leaving was very, very difficult but the place is not the same without Steve and it is NOT TIm’s fault. I am not bashing Apple, but the new hires in management that have never been at the company with Steve at the helm are hurting the culture badly. It will probably take a few more years for those subtle changes to be seen in the market and the products but there are some not-very-applesque people in positions of power making some ugly decisions. Go ahead and call me crazy if you like but quoting surveys and accusing me of working for Samsung (whom I can’t stand either) is not going to change the cancer that is growing at Apple. I have held this back for quite awhile but am sick of the question about Tim being raised at MDN. You are looking in the wrong direction. It is not the leadership, it is the middle-management that is severely hurting Apple right now. MDN, please “iCal” this and see if you start to see the cracks down the road. I promise this will be my last post on this topic…..

        1. The cracks are in every company and the longer one works for a single company, the more likely that an older employee won’t like the changes they see. One often gets a feeling of self importance and wants to see their vision carried to fruition. I am sorry that your vision wasn’t fulfilled and you were wise to leave when you realized it.

        2. Difference of opinion, no matter how well reasoned and logical, is not welcome here. The Apple Mob, led by peterblood71, will shoot down anyone who dares criticize Apple. No surprise here…

        3. I have seen this repeatedly in the Company I work for. We haven’t promoted from within for a decade. The middle/senior managers come and go. When new guys land they don’t try to understand how the Company works, they simply demand changes so it works like what they know. It’s not progress, it’s a constant churn of the same stuff. These changes are often done in rash/fast process that overlook important detailed aspects that usually bite us in the a$$.

    3. I’m sorry but if employees were leaving in “droves” why are we not hearing about it? Surely the Apple rumor mill like 9to5Mac, John Gruber etc.would be reporting on it. Also Apple made some pretty high profile hires last year. Why would these people come to Apple if employees are leaving in “droves”?

  3. Cook is doing quite well: he’s expanded the franchise; refined global supply/manufacturing to the point where it is the gold standard; defended brand and intellectual property both domestically and internationally; returned value to shareholders through dividends and stock buybacks; shared a meal with a Wall Street vulture and stuck him with the bill.

    More to come.

  4. Middle management is not the problem. It never is under a strong chief executive. Only a weak one. Although, I agree with Former Apple Employee’s characterization of Schiller. He thinks HE should be the CEO – he sees the weakness in Tim every day and imagines himself in that seat. Another perfect symptom of weak leadership.

    The more excuses, theories, speculation, and blind devotion to Tim will not make him who you want him to be. He’s not, he will not be, and until he steps aside, all this will go on and on and on. The result will be the continued slide backwards for the once great company. AAPL in the doldrums and Apple products losing ground to the competition and not just Samsung. The Tim Cook era is the worst thing to ever happen to Apple. It will continue to get worse for as long as it lasts. I keep hoping for the inevitable change but now believe when it does come, and it will come, it will be too late for any possible return to the position it once held.

    For those who keep hounding for specific examples of my conclusions are just looking for an argument intended as a diversion from the painful truth even they know to be the reality.

    1. I think its *far* too early for such a end-of-days-type proselytzing like this. It’s barely been 3 years since the iPad. Chill out.

      Was America screwed when we lost George Washington? Was scientific progress halted with Einstein’s death?

      Building blocks, man. It just so happens that 2001-2010 was characterized by *a lot* of very fast building!

    2. Just curious how you know this about Schiller? And I’d say the same thing to the alleged former employee who claims Schiller is an egomaniac. Based on what, exactly? And if Tim Cook is a weak leader, who on the executive team would be suited to replace him? Cue? Federighi?

  5. MDN. Please warn readers if the linked article is going to bomard you with ” app instal ” offers or a requirement to register to read the article

    I have no intention of installing a whole lotta crap. On my iPad. Or register for shitty spam for the next year.

  6. Lets face it – Apple and the world lost something when Steve Jobs passed away. That impact will be felt on some level no matter who is running Apple.

    With that said I think Tim is doing a fantastic job and the best way to honor Steve Jobs is to believe in Apple as much as he did by embracing his beliefs that Apple’s best days are yet to come.

    1. Really,
      Totally agree. Its a different world and we have different tools to work with.

      Also, everyone forgets that Steve Jobs knew the end was coming. He set up Apple Univ. inside the company to help carry on his thoughts and direction. I hear its required for all executives.

      All and all, I think Apple is doing just fine. Even Rome took more than a day to conquer the world. 🙂

  7. Cook is clueless when it comes to the product development and influencing the products. We all know how SJ had direct influence, control and final say over so many aspects of the products. From things like the infamous story of google icon look in the early days to skeuomorphism (forgive spelling if it’s wrong, is it even a word?).
    Cook put Ive in charge of the UI which is a tragedy whereas SJ would have never let iOS 7 out the door looking like it does.
    Cook may be doing well as actual CEO but SJ was far beyond a CEO. he was pretty much the product manager when it came to calling shots on the products.

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