Tim Cook was interviewed by Charlie Rose a few days ago. I stumbled across the first part of the interview on The Loop earlier today and was surprised that I was able to watch it on Hulu in Germany.
A lot of what Tim Cook said was meant to promote Apple's products—which should surprise no one—but he was also very honest about Apple's goals and the things that make Apple the company that it is. Everything from Apple's product development philosophy, to their organisational structure, to the companies they regard as competition is in line with what everyone with a certain amount of knowledge about business and product development processes can observe.
I was left with three thoughts after this interview:
- Without any apparent hesitation Cook revealed much about the company's inner workings, it's hard to imagine getting this kind of candid information from any other C-level executive in the world. Frankly, I find it scary and impressive at the same time, because it demonstrates how sure Apple is that its corporate culture and its way of doing things is a unique competitive advantage.
- Very few things that were said during the interview are news to people observing the company and the markets it engages in. Then why, with all this information out in the open, do so-called (or self-titled) analysts get so much wrong about Apple all the time? Why do players in the same markets constantly underestimate Apple and run their collective mouthes off? It really boggles the mind.
- If I had to give an explanation as to why the company is as successful as it is and has been for a long time, it would be that in Apple's corporate culture the standard management buzzwords of 'vision' and 'mission' are substituted with an actual sense of purpose to make great products.
If you're at all interested in understanding the company a bit better and getting a glimpse at what we as customers can expect in the years to come, you should follow the link to The Loop and watch the interview.