Samsung Chairman Lee urges workers to Think Different

“Samsung Electronics Co. Chairman Lee Kun Hee urged workers to adopt new ways of thinking and move beyond their focus on hardware as the world’s biggest maker of smartphones and televisions seeks to maintain growth,” Jungah Lee reports for Bloomberg. “‘We have to change once again,’ Lee said today, according to e-mailed notes from the company. ‘We must give a bigger push for innovations, including in business structure, so that we can lead industry trends.'”

“Samsung shipped a record number of handsets in 2013 and posted its highest quarterly earnings, yet its shares had their first annual decline in five years amid signs of slowing growth in high-end handsets and competition from Apple Inc.’s new iPhones,” Lee reports. “The Suwon, South Korea-based company, the biggest maker of memory chips and flat-panel displays, is focusing on cheaper devices in emerging markets as prices for handsets drop… Samsung should create new businesses by integrating technologies from different industries, Lee said today. ‘Our leading businesses are constantly being chased by competitors, while time is running out for our less-competitive businesses,’ said Lee, South Korea’s richest man. ‘Last year, we engaged in do-or-die battles with companies around the world and endured patent wars in light of market slowdown and prolonged, weak global economic growth.'”

MacDailyNews Take: Gee, convicted patent infringer, perhaps you shouldn’t have stolen and resold Apple’s patented intellectual property?

“Lee’s speech comes a day after Google Inc.’s Motorola Mobility unit reduced the price of its Moto X flagship handset to $399 on any U.S. carrier without a contract,” Lee reports. “That’s about 25 percent less than the previous price at AT&T Inc.’s online store and about 38 percent less than the Samsung S4’s $640 price on the same website.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: This report is not too clear about what Lee wants his minions to think differently about, but we suppose it’s better than their usual “Think Corrupt.”

Related articles:
Samsung: Victim of its own DNA – December 30, 2013
South Korean press shocked at Samsung’s Galaxy S4 sales disaster – December 28, 2013

43 Comments

    1. That’s why everyone thinks Apple has nothing new up their sleeve. Since Samsung ripped off so much of Apple’s IP, Apple is more hush hush than ever. Hopefully Cook will prove all these naysayers wrong, and come out with something unique and cool that will shut all their mouths. Samsung will just have to wait to see what the boys in Cupertino come out with to get their new think different thing going. Quite a strategy.

    2. I’m not sure what to make of Lee’s opening slide on his Powerpoint presentation:

      바보 같은 짓하지 마십시오. 도둑질 할 때, 더 창조적으로 이렇게.

  1. “so that we can lead industry trends”

    How the heck do they think they can lead anything, when their primary business model is copying and ripping off others?

  2. Samsung just has no shame whatsoever. I miss the times when foreign and domestic companies were adventurous and creative. The Power Glove, Virtual Boy, and 3DO were all flops, but at least they tried. Now, Samsung’s Galaxy Watch, Google’s Glass, and many other things are just rip offs of better things from the past. It seems like only Apple does all the inventing.

      1. As nostalgic as I am for the 80s and 90s, I just can’t get any warm feelings for the school that I went to when I lived in the Bronx. All my “friends” hated me, I was bullied constantly, and our school still used DOS computers well into my senior year (and I graduated in 1995!) College was heaven for me, and I have more nostalgia for that time in my life even though it was in the early 2000s, and literally began after 9/11.

            1. You tend to remember things clearly if they affected your life strongly. I’m nostalgic for the entertainment and pop culture of those eras, but some things are just kind of hard to forget and forgive. 😉

  3. Blah Blah from top executives does NOT a company turnaround make. I’ve been in the thick of it at Eastman Kodak and can tell the tales.

    Samsung has a deep SCAMsung work culture. That ain’t gonna change in a hurry. The best thing the execs can do is read about Apple and copy its command structure. No Marketing-As-Management, which sadly is what Lee Kun Hee emphasizes, meaning that he’s his own company’s worst enemy. Keep marketing out of the way and enrich the creative people in the company. Provide incentive. Remove the corporate bullshit that hinders creativity.

    I always welcome competition in the market. It’s great for innovation. But Samsung doesn’t focus on actual competition, as their horrific copycat behavior of all things Apple has blatantly demonstrated. When Samsung THINKS FOR ITSELF, then maybe we’ll see some actual competition and the inevitable benefits in the market.

    For now, I’d happily see Samsung’s crap phones and tablets wiped out of the market in favor of something actually creative.

    Sorry Samsung, but you screwed your own pooch. Get busy changing your fundamental business model.

    1. As a former Kodak employee, can you shed some light on how Kodak screwed SJ and Apple on the patent infringement they filed against Apple after Apple apparently worked with them on making photography digital? Should those patents really be jointly owned by Apple and Kodak? Just as a matter of interest to all here on the outside.

      1. I was not party to that situation and found out about it after it was over. From the point of view I had, Apple and Kodak worked well together on setting up a color profile standard, which continues today via ColorSync. I was disappointed with the first Apple cameras, which Kodak made. I later learned it has a lot to do with Kodak having let its camera design experts walk out the door via early retirement. Kodak lost a massive amount of technology via their stupid early retirement plans, not just cameras.

        1. I thought Kodak did a terrible job for years with their consumer stuff. As a DP I used 35mm Kodak film for years which was world class but I never could reconcile how badly they managed on consumer product design and execution by comparison. Great at making film, not so good at about everything else on the consumer level. I even shot a commercial with a Kodak instant camera many years ago before Polaroid sued and Kodak had to leave that market but I thought it kinda junky. I once had a Super 8mm transfer machine they made that was also expensive and terribly made. Better managed Kodak could have entered the digital era strong instead of very weak. And now film has largely disappeared. Sad. Kodak is now more of a floundering memory.

          1. I got into Kodak stuff via my dad’s regular 8mm film camera. I liked the Gumby animated program on TV and was good at making my own clay models. So I tried, with amateur results, to make my own claymation adventure. I then graduated Super 8 and live action. I made a pretty good film with my brothers using some animation and other strangeness. That was good enough to let me skip a term in film classes. I had a good friend who was into photography as well as an employer who worked with the FDA who encouraged me eventually go finish up the film stuff and add in biomes photography. That eventually got me into Kodak supporting pro customers. But I also learned all the amateur level stuff as well.

            I had pretty good relations with the R&D folks and soaked up everything I could lay my hands on, which let me move from film to digital, which I LOVED. Who knew I had an innate skill in digi-tech? And Kodak was a great place, at that time (circa 1992-1998) to get right into the thick of it. I went nuts into color management. The more challenging the tech the better.

            But one thing always annoyed me: Marketing ran Kodak. And as I learned via my interest in human behavior and personalities, that was the perfect way to kill the company. I watched incredible technology get stamped out or compromised specifically because the marketing people didn’t like it. Thus was born my Marketing-As-Management concepts, with which I shall not bore you on this snowy day.

            I’m going to brave the snow in my 4 wheel drive with my super kewl sister-in-law from the Philippines to show her what northern hemisphere winter is all about! …And to of course score some excellent coffee.

            1. Derek you sound like one cool dude. I’ve seen you on this site forever but you never really know the people behind the names. You’re someone I’d love to sit and have a beer with and talk shop. I’ve worked in stop motion (and a lot of famous animators) most of my life, including the last one which was CORALINE. I started doing Pillsbury Doughboy, and a good friend of mine who passed away a few years ago wrote the theme song to Gumby! His first paying song. $100 from Art Clokey! I agree most heartedly with you on the marketing, or tail wagging the dog, control. I wish there was a way to private message here.

            2. Absolutely Peter. I’m in New York. I’m a total beer snob, thanks to friends in the UK. Coraline was great! Saint Art Clokey. My brothers and I all love Tim Burton and Danny Elfman stuff.

              me via email: derekcurrie-at-mac-dot-com

    2. “The best thing the execs can do is read about Apple and copy its command structure.”

      Funny you say that DC, hasn’t Michael Bromwich obsessively been trying to pry that kind of information from Apple lately, by insisting on interviewing Apple’s executives about those very details…?

      Think Judge cote(x) might have a SamScum inkling…?

      1. I have read about the duties Bromwich is supposed to perform. I entirely agree with Apple that his presence there is unconstitutional as there is no crime evident, no probable cause, etc. It’s like the judge made up a bunch of rubbish designed to hinder Apple, not help justice.

        I don’t like speculating without some data, at least when I’m in serious mode. But something is seriously wrong with that entire lawsuit, the outcome and the $100,000 a day lawyer shoved into Apple’s face for no justifiable reason.

        1. Totally unjustifiable, unconstitutional and there has to be some alterior motive and objective to go digging into Apple’s corporate structure that smells of coruption and payola. Even the supreme court will see how this stifles and threatens US business concerns and true competition. Also, how on earth can a person appointed by the court as monitor be one that has no technology background and credentials??? This guy is not only bold enough to admit that, but even brazen enough to demand that Apple pay the fees of the people he hires with the skills he lavks, as a result of his ignorance!

          Plus the ex parte communications he and cote(x) are admitedly said to have had are tottally in disregard of the law and should in and of themself be grounds for removal, recusal and disbarement of both.

          1. Though appointing a monitor is rare when a defendant has no prior history of wrongdoing, Apple’s behavior over the past few months may help validate the judge’s decision to appoint one.

            Total rubbish. This entire issue continues to stink of government intervention in personal affairs well beyond any law. It certainly IS outside of the Fourth Amendment to the US Constitution.

            WTF is it with so much of #MyStupidGovernment acting like a fascist state? Is that what we are becoming, just like the conspiracy theory loons have been saying? Or is this closer to what I perceive as vengeance from competitors and jealous members of our Corporate Oligarchy pulling the strings to screw over Apple for being the single greatest company on the planet, entirely UNlike their corrupt and parasitic asses.

            History will tell.

  4. well, this samsung fool general Lee can start by having samsung develop their own operating system and its own version of app store and iTunes store, that would be a source of pride and independence instead of using the whore android now

  5. Samsung “is focusing on cheaper devices in emerging markets as prices for handsets drop”.

    Can anybody see what might go wrong with that strategy ?

    Aiming for market share in a competitive market with razor thin margins is what did for Dell and for many other companies too.

    Anybody who looks at the smartphone business can see that the real money is being made at the premium end of the market. Samsung needs to have a winning top-end smartphone and what they’re currently offering is not sufficiently good, so they’re having to fall back on plan ‘B’, which is to build market share at the lower end of the market.

  6. Isnt that also a knok off of apple approach.
    “Think different” was Jobs moto.. Right!

    Samsung the master of knock offs .. First copying individual products and ideas… Now moving their knock off to a more fundimental layer… Think like Apple thinks !
    Samsung.. Please!, at least come up with original wording!

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