Kane Stories March 19, 2014

Tim Cook may have called the Haunted Empire book ‘nonsense’, but the derisive comments about the book from Apple executives do not end there. Personally, I found the pen-throwing anecdote too funny and decided to ask Cue whether it was true or not. I wasn’t really expecting a reply, but to my surprise he actually did.

I asked about the story’s truthfulness:

I am slightly obsessed with the anecdote about Jobs throwing a pen in your face. Is the story true?

Cue replied rather curtly:

No it’s not.

Hard to argue with a direct reply from Cue himself. The full extract from Haunted Empire can be seen below. You can find 9to5Mac‘s full review of Kane’s controversial book here.

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Kane Stories March 18, 2014

Yukari Kane on Apple leadership styles: Jobs demanding, Cook inclusive, both intense

The NY Times has a brief interview with Yukari Kane, author of Haunted Empire, in which she contrasts the leadership styles of Steve Jobs and Tim Cook. Interestingly, while many see Cook as laid-back in contrast to the driven nature of the company’s co-founder, Kane says that both share an intensity.

I don’t think of Tim as laid back. In fact, he’s extremely intense. His intensity is just more quiet and dogged than Steve’s.

There is, of course, the obligatory anecdote to illustrate the obsession with detail and demands Jobs would make on his team.

Jobs routinely made a habit of calling people back mid-vacation […] for example, people had to work on Christmas Day because he decided he wanted a different color iPod shuffle at the last minute.

Despite her book’s contention that Apple is lost without Steve, she does acknowledge the strengths that Cook brings to the role.

Cook is also a better internal communicator. He sends out more all-staff emails and holds more town hall meetings. He also understands that people need to take vacations and have down time […]

Cook brings more efficiency and organization to Apple, which is good because the company’s increased size and scale requires a professional, consistent leadership style that is more inclusive than Steve Jobs’s was.

But doesn’t waste any time in returning to her theme.

In terms of profits and revenues, there is no question that Apple continues to be a successful company. But Apple’s own definition of success is much more. Its promise is to be exceptional – to make insanely great products that change the world. The latter is difficult to do without Steve Jobs’s reality distortion field. […]  If Apple stays on the current trajectory, I think the danger is that it could turn into Sony.

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