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Original poster
Apr 12, 2001
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tim_cook_time_photo.jpg
The Wall Street Journal today published a new excerpt from former WSJ reporter Yukari Iwatani Kane's new book Haunted Empire, Apple After Steve Jobs, offering a new look into the management style of Tim Cook.

Kane notes that when Cook started at Apple in 1998, he set high expectations for everyone working for him, asking them to act like Apple was a $20 billion company when they were a $6 billion company and to procure the best yields, delivery and prices on components.
To some, Cook was a machine; to others, he was riveting. He could strike terror in the hearts of his subordinates, but he could also motivate them to toil from dawn to midnight for just a word of praise.
Cook ran his operations meetings in an orderly and disciplined fashion, going through every item and finding any possible error in meetings that could last up to six hours long. These meetings, according to Kane, could sometimes be terrifying for employees.
Meetings with Cook could be terrifying. He exuded a Zenlike calm and didn't waste words. "Talk about your numbers. Put your spreadsheet up," he'd say as he nursed a Mountain Dew. (Some staffers wondered why he wasn't bouncing off the walls from the caffeine.) When Cook turned the spotlight on someone, he hammered them with questions until he was satisfied. "Why is that?" "What do you mean?" "I don't understand. Why are you not making it clear?" He was known to ask the same exact question 10 times in a row.
Unlike Jobs, Cook apparently used deafening silence when he wasn't happy with something. For instance, the excerpt explains an incident where someone was unable to answer one of Cook's questions so Cook didn't say a word and let the silence fester, causing everyone in the room to stare at the table. The atmosphere of the room would grow to intense levels as Cook kept his eyes on the person who wasn't able to answer until Cook pulled out an energy bar from his pocket to eat as he waited for an answer.

However, once Cook became CEO he made moves to make Apple feel more open internally than it had under Jobs. He opted to communicate with employees more often via emails and town-hall meetings. And, unlike Jobs, who opted to have lunch with Jony Ive, Cook would have lunch at the cafeteria and introduce himself to employees he didn't know and ask to eat with them.

Haunted Empire, Apple After Steve Jobs will be published on March 18.

Article Link: Excerpt From New Book Offers Look at Tim Cook's Management Style
 

Dulcimer

macrumors 6502a
Nov 20, 2012
801
273
Assuming these stories are true, Cook sounds like a great leader. As clear and directed as Jobs. Of course, he doesn't have the same charisma as Jobs, so all the SJ-loving fanboys on here hate him.
 

AngerDanger

macrumors 603
Dec 9, 2008
5,371
28,128
In that picture, Cook looks like a badass walking away from an explosion without turning back.

JpY9uT4.png
 
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vomhorizon

macrumors 6502a
Sep 24, 2013
952
68
Really not much of a shocker. He is more focused on the business side and less on what makes Macs "Macs." Watch the Ballmerization of Apple continue.

Companies as large as apple do not need to have one man that does absolutely everything..This a company that does 175 billion of revenue with just a few products..Someone has to manage the workings of the company, the logistics around it. Creativity can be centered around the leadership that only does that..
 

euphemus

macrumors newbie
Jul 12, 2012
27
2
The atmosphere of the room would grow to intense levels as Cook kept his eyes on the person who wasn't able to answer until Cook pulled out an energy bar from his pocket to eat as he waited for an answer.

Classic bitch move of a mid-level manager.
 

kingtj

macrumors 68030
Oct 23, 2003
2,606
747
Brunswick, MD
Yeah, basically ....

I don't find any of these intimidation tactics impressive in the least.

Didn't like the stuff Jobs used to pull (yelling at people, etc.) and don't care for this either.

I mean, look -- the person who can't answer your question satisfactorily in a meeting already gets it; he screwed up. How much productivity is going to happen in the meeting during long periods of awkward silence?

Classic bitch move of a mid-level manager.
 

Rogifan

macrumors Core
Nov 14, 2011
22,877
28,977
Really not much of a shocker. He is more focused on the business side and less on what makes Macs "Macs." Watch the Ballmerization of Apple continue.

As long as Cook allows the people who work for him to be focused on that why does it matter if he's more focused on the business side of things. I'd like someone to name one great product or idea that Cook stopped from happening because of his alleged "bean counter" mentality.
 

Atlantico

macrumors 6502
May 3, 2011
472
168
BCN
Assuming these stories are true, Cook sounds like a great leader. As clear and directed as Jobs. Of course, he doesn't have the same charisma as Jobs, so all the SJ-loving fanboys on here hate him.

Quite the contrary, assuming those stories are true, Cook sounds like a terrible leader.

Why ask the same question 10 times? Does Apple hire idiots?

Why treat people with "deafening silence" when he is not pleased with them? A sign of a great leader or communicator?

Why make people "toil from dawn to midnight" just for a praise. Not a raise, a praise.

Why were his meetings with employees often "terrifying" for said employees? Were they incompetent? Does Apple hire incompetent people?

This guy sounds like a lot of douchbags that somehow become executives. Terrible boss.
 

lysingur

macrumors 6502
Dec 30, 2013
369
513
Sense of direction

I agree with robertcoogan. For all his anti-Jobs qualities, one thing that Cook absolutely needs for Apple to continue to grow is an acuity on how technology is evolving and where it's heading. Somehow it doesn't feel like iWatch is 'it'.
 

vpndev

macrumors 6502
May 11, 2009
288
97
you have to be kidding

Really not much of a shocker. He is more focused on the business side and less on what makes Macs "Macs." Watch the Ballmerization of Apple continue.

I will agree that Cook is no Steve Jobs. But Cook didn't preside over a huge company that missed mobile - entirely - and has thereby condemned it to the imminent major-also-ran status that IBM now enjoys.

Really - is this the best you can do ?? You're unworthy of your cave.
 

The Doctor11

macrumors 603
Dec 15, 2013
5,961
1,398
New York
Assuming these stories are true, Cook sounds like a great leader. As clear and directed as Jobs. Of course, he doesn't have the same charisma as Jobs, so all the SJ-loving fanboys on here hate him.
I think he is a amazing leader and a amazing person. And he has a awesome voice :D
 

lolkthxbai

macrumors 65816
May 7, 2011
1,400
472
I don't find any of these intimidation tactics impressive in the least.

Didn't like the stuff Jobs used to pull (yelling at people, etc.) and don't care for this either.

I mean, look -- the person who can't answer your question satisfactorily in a meeting already gets it; he screwed up. How much productivity is going to happen in the meeting during long periods of awkward silence?

He asked a question, he's waiting for an answer, as far as I'm concerned, the employee is not being very productive.
 

Abazigal

Contributor
Jul 18, 2011
15,463
14,813
Singapore
I wouldn't like to be under such a boss, but I understand why it would be necessary from a management point of view.

But good lord...6 hour meetings ?!?
 

BigBeast

macrumors 6502a
Mar 6, 2009
643
39
Classic bitch move of a mid-level manager.

I don't find any of these intimidation tactics impressive in the least.

Didn't like the stuff Jobs used to pull (yelling at people, etc.) and don't care for this either.

I mean, look -- the person who can't answer your question satisfactorily in a meeting already gets it; he screwed up. How much productivity is going to happen in the meeting during long periods of awkward silence?

Quite the contrary, assuming those stories are true, Cook sounds like a terrible leader.

Why ask the same question 10 times? Does Apple hire idiots?

Why treat people with "deafening silence" when he is not pleased with them? A sign of a great leader or communicator?

Why make people "toil from dawn to midnight" just for a praise. Not a raise, a praise.

Why were his meetings with employees often "terrifying" for said employees? Were they incompetent? Does Apple hire incompetent people?

This guy sounds like a lot of douchbags that somehow become executives. Terrible boss.

Damn, God save me from working at that company :s

Quite the contrary. The are many different types of effective leaders, and Tim is in the right place. The employees that need coddling and reassurance are not necessarily less valuable than those that do not, but those are not the employees Apple is seeking to hire, or to have on staff. Apple looks to have sharp, efficient, and detail-oriented personnel in key areas of the company. Therefore, to lead such a team, you need to push them to their limits so that they can shine. I bet you that after being drilled like that in front of your peers, the next time you have to present, you'll make sure that you are perfect! Like I said it's not for everyone, but for the Apple elite, you better be ready and willing to take a beating, pick yourself up, grow and overcome. That way in the future, when you're head and shoulders above all the others in your same category, you'll be able to handle what others would deem insurmountable. Being afforded a compliment by such a leader feels like no other compliment you have ever received. Not only do they earn you self respect and the respect of those around you, you can truly say that you worked hard and succeeded where many would not be able to-- that's an incredible achievement.
 

Rogifan

macrumors Core
Nov 14, 2011
22,877
28,977
Hmm...this profile coming from someone who says Scott Forstall should not have been canned but in the next sentence says Apple Maps was a "fiasco". Sorry can't have it both ways. I doubt I'll be buying this book.
 
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