Keep the Focus on Innovative Product Design

By Don Reisinger  |  Posted 2011-08-25 Print this article Print


6. Showcase up-and-coming talent

Steve Jobs might have gotten all the attention at Apple, but he had a huge cast of characters that helped him achieve the kind of results he did as CEO. Realizing that, Apple needs to highlight those folks and make it clear that the people who helped Steve Jobs become Steve Jobs are still there. Apple hasn't changed; only its leader has, the company should note.

7. Focus on design

One of the key aspects of Steve Jobs' leadership at Apple was his ability to deliver outstanding product designs. From his laptops to his smartphones, every product offered a unique look that wasn't matched in the marketplace. If Apple wants to maintain its success without Steve Jobs at the helm, it must continue to push the envelope of design.

8. Stay true to Jobs' core principles

Steve Jobs made several controversial decisions as CEO of Apple. He decided against licensing Mac OS X to other computer vendors, he turned his back on conventional mobile-phone ideas, and he rejected enterprise buyers' demands that Apple focus more closely on their needs. In the process, he turned Apple into the biggest company in the world. Looking ahead, Tim Cook and the other senior managers at Apple must stay true to those principles. Like it or not, they work. And the top executives can't forget that.

9. Slow and steady wins the race

Whenever a CEO leaves a company, the new managers have a tendency to do several things quickly to show that they know what they're doing. Tim Cook must not fall into that trap. Wall Street trusts Cook, and they trust that Apple has the core principles that can help it continue its success. There's no need for management to prove itself by trying to move in some radical new direction to prove the CEO has the executive chops.

10. Keep the chip on the shoulder

Like it or not, Apple has a major chip on its shoulder. The company believes that it delivers the best products on the market, and it has a swagger that backs that up. If Tim Cook wants to be as effective as Steve Jobs, he needs to ensure that the company keeps that going. Apple's swagger is integral to its future success.

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Don Reisinger is a freelance technology columnist. He started writing about technology for Ziff-Davis' Since then, he has written extremely popular columns for, Computerworld, InformationWeek, and others. He has appeared numerous times on national television to share his expertise with viewers. You can follow his every move at

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