or Connect
AppleInsider › Forums › General › General Discussion › Steve Jobs resignation letter mocks idea that board had no succession plan
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Steve Jobs resignation letter mocks idea that board had no succession plan

post #1 of 35
Thread Starter 
In a public letter to Apple's board resigning as chief executive, Steve Jobs wrote "I strongly recommend that we execute our succession plan and name Tim Cook as CEO of Apple," a barb that appears to mock the notion that Apple had no plans in place to account for his departure.

At the beginning of 2011, the Central Laborers' Pension Fund introduced a shareholder proposal to compel Apple's board to report the company's succession plans and disclose those plans on an annual basis.

"Such a report would enable shareholders to judge the board on its readiness and willingness to meet the demands of succession planning based on the circumstances at the time," the proposal stated.

What, no plans?

Apple's board opposed the proposal, flatly informing shareholders that the company already "maintains a comprehensive succession plan" and that publishing any details of it publicly could only serve to give competitors "an unfair advantage," potentially helping them to "undermine [Apple's] efforts to recruit and retain executives."

Arguing on behalf of the proposal, Jennifer O'Dell of the Laborers' International Union of North America clarified that the plan was really only asking for confirmation that the board is actively reviewing succession plans, and did not compel the company to present any confidential information, an idea that appeared to suggest that the experienced members of Apple's board hadn't even considered that possibility that Jobs may someday leave his position as chief executive.

Shareholders ultimately voted against the proposal, but rumors persisted that Apple might not have any plans in place to accommodate the departure of Jobs or other top executives, despite the fact that Jobs had been on medical leave since January, with Apple's chief operations officer Tim Cook designated to act in Jobs' behalf as needed.

In March, Eric Jackson, writing an opinion piece for Bloomberg asked, "why is it assumed that Apple doesnt have a succession plan, though? Just because it hasnt disclosed it doesnt mean one doesnt exist."

Jackson added, "what I find remarkable is that while the business media often refer to Jobs as a control-freak obsessing over minor details of products and marketing campaigns, they assume he isnt equally focused on who will succeed him."

Eight months of gradual transition

Jobs first announced he would be taking a health-related leave of absence in January, then reappeared in March to present iPad 2, and later returned to the stage at the company's worldwide developer conference in June to outline the company's plans for Mac OS X Lion, iOS 5, and new iCloud online services.

Jobs also appeared at a Cupertino city council meeting in June to present the company's plans to build a futuristic, ambitious expansion of its global headquarters in the form of a massive ring-shaped glass building surrounded by trees and powered by its own electrical plant.

While still actively involved in decision making at Apple on a reduced scale, Jobs' leave of absence throughout eight months of 2011 appears to have been calculated to serve as a smooth transition of executive power to Cook, who presided over the company's shareholder meeting in February and has handled the company's quarterly conference calls with analysts, albeit without the same flare and character as Jobs.

Jobs said he would "like to serve, if the Board sees fit, as Chairman of the Board, director and Apple employee," a humble wording for a figure universally credited with saving Apple and turning it into the world's most valuable tech company and a global game changer.

In the reduced role as Apple's chairman, Jobs will retain his figurehead leadership of the company he co-founded, even as the market grows to view Cook as the company's leading executive.

Bill Gates continues to serve as Microsoft's chairman, despite having little strategic involvement with the firm and rarely acting as its spokesperson. Given Jobs' charismatic style and attention to detail, he is likely to continue to make appearances as Apple's public executive, even as the team he has put into place continues to assume an increasing role in executing the company's strategy.

Was Apple looking for a CEO?

However, even as late as last month, the Wall Street Journal was stoking the idea that Apple's board still failed to have a clear succession plan, reporting that some of its directors were secretly exploring options to replace Jobs, including the external recruitment of executive candidates.

The article stated that any news of Jobs' departure "is going to be traumatic" for the company, and the authors, Yukari Kane, Joann Lublin and Nick Wingfield, said they reached out to Jobs for his own response to the allegations that Apple was poised to implode with no plans in place were he to leave.

"I think it's hogwash" Jobs reportedly responded in an email.

post #2 of 35
The way Steve runs things and knowing the health challenges ahead of him, you can bet that he and Apple were ready for this day as sad as it is.

I'm sad, but not at all worried about Apple's future.
post #3 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

However, even as late as last month, the Wall Street Journal was stoking the idea that Apple's board still failed to have a clear succession plan ...

the wall street journal has about as much credibility left as an orange, imho. news international. blech. if you think that slime doesn't run downhill, think again..
"Personally, I would like nothing more than to thoroughly proof each and every word of my articles before posting. But I can't."

appleinsider's mike campbell, august 15, 2013
Reply
"Personally, I would like nothing more than to thoroughly proof each and every word of my articles before posting. But I can't."

appleinsider's mike campbell, august 15, 2013
Reply
post #4 of 35
Apple has all of their plans in place. Remember, they had planned their CPU transition for years before they actually executed the move to Intel. They have at minimum a 5 year plan. Minimum.

Proud AAPL stock owner.

 

GOA

Reply

Proud AAPL stock owner.

 

GOA

Reply
post #5 of 35
Steve I am your long lost millionaire brother. What do ya say we hang out at the mother ship when its done and have some Smart Water latte'.
An Apple man since 1977
Reply
An Apple man since 1977
Reply
post #6 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

Was Apple looking for a CEO?

However, even as late as last month, the Wall Street Journal was stoking the idea that Apple's board still failed to have a clear succession plan, reporting that some of its directors were secretly exploring options to replace Jobs, including the external recruitment of executive candidates.

The article stated that any news of Jobs' departure "is going to be traumatic" for the company, and the authors, Yukari Kane, Joann Lublin and Nick Wingfield, said they reached out to Jobs for his own response to the allegations that Apple was poised to implode with no plans in place were he to leave.

"I think it's hogwash" Jobs reportedly responded in an email.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pooch View Post

the wall street journal has about as much credibility left as an orange, imho. news international. blech. if you think that slime doesn't run downhill, think again..

I bet that story was planted by hedge funds who were short the stock.
post #7 of 35
I hope he keeps coming back to help with keynotes. I can see that they might not want him to so that there's no doubt that he's no longer CEO, but you have to admit that watching a Steve Jobs keynote is much more fun than watching a Tim Cook keynote was, for the couple of times he took over. Scott Forstall's pretty good, too, and Phil Schiller's not bad, but I'm not sure about whether any of them can pull off one more thing.
post #8 of 35
I fail to see how his letter was a mockery. Seems pretty straight forward to me. Could he perhaps have just been emphasizing the "plan" for the record so that there could be no confusion? I mean, that is the guideline for a resignation letter. Again I think people just want to read into things whatever the hell they want to read.
post #9 of 35
Why would we doubt that Tim Cook was not a planned successor when he has been running the company now and the previous time Steve took a leave of absence. Why is it so hard to believe he was not the planned successor.
Your story is based on your own believe and not facts. Trying to rile up the stock market or what?
Doesn't matter Tim Cook is now CEO and Steve Jobs is now Chairman of the board enough said.
post #10 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bilbo63 View Post

The way Steve runs things and knowing the health challenges ahead of him, you can bet that he and Apple were ready for this day as sad as it is.

I'm sad, but not at all worried about Apple's future.

Well said! I have been an Apple user since buying my first mac in 1984. Taking it to my office as my work computer to the chuckles of the techtards in our company. I remember a trio of wintel geeks telling me at the time that the Mac UI was no big deal, that they could easily build such a user interface for their DOS machines. Laughable - 11 years later was MSFT's lame response. Steve, through his genius and insight, has driven unparalleled innovation in the PC, music, tablet and mobile phone universe both inside Apple and outside. He has built an incredibly strong team to carry on that legacy.

Our thoughts are with you Steve! And thank you for all you have done and continue to do to enrich our lives.
post #11 of 35
I would bet at least two cents that the new primary Apple Spokeman will be Scott Forstall.
He will never be a Steve Jobs. But I think he will do a better job than Ballmer for sure. (Joke)
post #12 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by LighteningKid View Post

I hope he keeps coming back to help with keynotes. I can see that they might not want him to so that there's no doubt that he's no longer CEO, but you have to admit that watching a Steve Jobs keynote is much more fun than watching a Tim Cook keynote was, for the couple of times he took over. Scott Forstall's pretty good, too, and Phil Schiller's not bad, but I'm not sure about whether any of them can pull off one more thing.

Scott Forstall is the best presenter, sans Jobs, that Apple has. He has great electricity when he's onstage, and he has an obvious passion for what he is presenting. I always feel Schiller is trying to sell me something. With Scott, I get the same feeling as with Steve: he wants to share this incredible technology with me. There is a huge difference, imo.
post #13 of 35

CNN: Obamacare largest tax increase in American history

 

FORBES: ObamaCare's 7 Tax Hikes On Middle class

Reply

CNN: Obamacare largest tax increase in American history

 

FORBES: ObamaCare's 7 Tax Hikes On Middle class

Reply
post #14 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by hittrj01 View Post

Scott Forstall is the best presenter, sans Jobs, that Apple has. He has great electricity when he's onstage, and he has an obvious passion for what he is presenting. I always feel Schiller is trying to sell me something. With Scott, I get the same feeling as with Steve: he wants to share this incredible technology with me. There is a huge difference, imo.

I have no real problems with Phil as a presenter, but I like Scott better too.
post #15 of 35
Perhaps Steve's greatest design is not a product for sale, but the organization he has built.

There is no Microsoftian Law Of Nature that says you must always depend on the out-front charismatic leader.

Apple has its stars and Steve's has been a super-nova, but he has shown that it's possible to create creativity.
post #16 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by KrakaJap View Post

I fail to see how his letter was a mockery. Seems pretty straight forward to me. Could he perhaps have just been emphasizing the "plan" for the record so that there could be no confusion? I mean, that is the guideline for a resignation letter. Again I think people just want to read into things whatever the hell they want to read.

Quote:
Originally Posted by b9bot View Post

Why would we doubt that Tim Cook was not a planned successor when he has been running the company now and the previous time Steve took a leave of absence. Why is it so hard to believe he was not the planned successor.
Your story is based on your own believe and not facts. Trying to rile up the stock market or what?
Doesn't matter Tim Cook is now CEO and Steve Jobs is now Chairman of the board enough said.

Agreed. We must also take into account the author of this article. He may as well write articles titled:

Apple mocks fanboys by introducing video iPod.

Apple mocks fanboys by introducing App Store, allowing third parties to create native iPhone applications.

Apple mocks fanboys by adding copy and paste to iPhone.

Apple mocks fanboys by adding multitasking to iPhone.

Apple mocks fanboys by switching to Intel processors.
post #17 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bilbo63 View Post

The way Steve runs things and knowing the health challenges ahead of him, you can bet that he and Apple were ready for this day as sad as it is.

I'm sad, but not at all worried about Apple's future.

I'm betting that they have some sort of succession plan, only the coming weeks will tell us for sure.
post #18 of 35
The article contradicts its own premise. Nobody ever seriously questioned whether Apple had a succession plan. The debate was over how much of it should be disclosed to shareholders.
Please don't be insane.
Reply
Please don't be insane.
Reply
post #19 of 35
Has AI become "National Inquirer" or TMZ?

So here is what I heard - Steve is going to take it easy and focus on the construction of "Mothership Campus" in Cupertino!
post #20 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by Haggar View Post

Agreed. We must also take into account the author of this article. He may as well write articles titled:

Apple mocks fanboys by introducing video iPod.

Apple mocks fanboys by introducing App Store, allowing third parties to create native iPhone applications.

Apple mocks fanboys by adding copy and paste to iPhone.

Apple mocks fanboys by adding multitasking to iPhone.

Apple mocks fanboys by switching to Intel processors.

"Kasper's Automated Slave" is not actually a person AFAIK.

And good choice going for being mean at this particular time. Really classy.
post #21 of 35
You are the Thomas Edison, Henry Ford and Walt Disney of our Era.

You have inspired all of us.



Quote:
Originally Posted by FriedLobster View Post

CNN: Obamacare largest tax increase in American history

 

FORBES: ObamaCare's 7 Tax Hikes On Middle class

Reply

CNN: Obamacare largest tax increase in American history

 

FORBES: ObamaCare's 7 Tax Hikes On Middle class

Reply
post #22 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by FriedLobster View Post

You are the Thomas Edison, Henry Ford and Walt Disney of our Era.

You have inspired all of us.

Interesting point, but...

Henry Ford was a srong anti-Semite and racist (Hitler even praised him by name in his book "Mein Kampf"); Edison was a mean s.o.b. and stole patents from other people; and Walt Disney was probably okay, but he was accused of being anti-Semitic because of organizations he belonged to, but it's unclear.
post #23 of 35
Ok, this thread has officially gone weird.
post #24 of 35
It started weird.
Please don't be insane.
Reply
Please don't be insane.
Reply
post #25 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by Haggar View Post

Agreed. We must also take into account the author of this article. He may as well write articles titled:

Apple mocks fanboys by introducing video iPod.

Apple mocks fanboys by introducing App Store, allowing third parties to create native iPhone applications.

Apple mocks fanboys by adding copy and paste to iPhone.

Apple mocks fanboys by adding multitasking to iPhone.

Apple mocks fanboys by switching to Intel processors.

blah, blah, blah.
post #26 of 35
Or he just wanted to make sure Tim got the job, and now he has.
post #27 of 35
There was no mockery or barb in the letter. That is pure projection of own feelings (probably unrealistic self importance?) by AppleInsider.
post #28 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by FriedLobster View Post

You are the Thomas Edison, Henry Ford and Walt Disney of our Era.

You have inspired all of us.

Inspired yes but he is by no means equal to any of the fore mentioned people.

The Thomas Edison of personal computers is probably François Gernelle. Though I suspect that there was someone before him.

The team at Commodore could best be compared to Henry Ford.

Off the top of my head I can't think of how Walt Disney even compares. Bestowing God like qualities on the undeserving is ridiculous.

He is Steve Jobs. He has be apart of some amazing things. He DID NOT do anything by himself. It took many people to help bring about the vision that is Apple.

2011 13" Core i5 Macbook Pro | Intel 520 SSD | 8GB Corsair DDR3 1333 | OSX 10.7
iPhone 4S - AT&T

iPad 3 Wi-Fi

Reply

2011 13" Core i5 Macbook Pro | Intel 520 SSD | 8GB Corsair DDR3 1333 | OSX 10.7
iPhone 4S - AT&T

iPad 3 Wi-Fi

Reply
post #29 of 35
SEC regs require all companies to have a plan, but there is no requirement to tell it. Given Apple's cult of secrecy over products was anyone shocked they never told the pla outside of the informal but rather large hint of putting Cook in charge during all three leaves


Quote:
Originally Posted by Bilbo63 View Post

I have no real problems with Phil as a presenter, but I like Scott better too.

I think Phil is a good MC type figure but Scott and Jonny are better at the explanations, perhaps because technospeak rolls off their tongues better

In fact I could see future keynotes basically being Phil comes out and greets the audience. Introduces Tim for the numbers. Comes back and briefly intros the first product item with a 'here's Scott/Jonny/video to tell us more about it" and so on. Maybe if it is something like iTunes Match that has been introduced in detail already Phil might do the bit himself since it would be basically the release date and a few more details. On something big they might surprised the audience and have Steve guest appear for the presentation. either in person or via something like FaceTime

A non tech's thoughts on Apple stuff 

(She's family so I'm a little biased)

Reply

A non tech's thoughts on Apple stuff 

(She's family so I'm a little biased)

Reply
post #30 of 35
I am tired of hearing for a bunch of analysts and unions and politicians ... Steve Jobs was one CEO who you actually heard from and saw routinely. Give the guy a break ... and give Apple some credit with regard to the succession.

Cook is in place ... a succession plan that was executed without a bunch of hype or distraction. Steve is Chairman ... good for him, great for Apple ... let's get on with it.
post #31 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr Millmoss View Post

The article contradicts its own premise. Nobody ever seriously questioned whether Apple had a succession plan. The debate was over how much of it should be disclosed to shareholders.

The answer is, zero, if that's what the Board decides. As long as they have reported that they have one, there is no need to compromise the company, the position, or the person by revealing the details.
post #32 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by Prof. Peabody View Post

"Kasper's Automated Slave" is not actually a person AFAIK.

And good choice going for being mean at this particular time. Really classy.

DED wrote the article. which is who we was talking about in his comment. Whenever you go to the comments, you switch to the forum view, in which (as far as I can tell) every article is published by "kasper's automated slave" which is also known as the Apple Insider account. If you click on the article on the main page, however, you properly see author credit (in this case DED). I don't know why authorship isn't transferred to the forum topic, I wish it were, but I have no idea what type of publishing software they use.

He also said NOTHING negative about apple, steve jobs, or even AI in general in that statement, only about a single author on a single apple-related site.
post #33 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by FreeRange View Post

Well said! I have been an Apple user since buying my first mac in 1984. Taking it to my office as my work computer to the chuckles of the techtards in our company. I remember a trio of wintel geeks telling me at the time that the Mac UI was no big deal, that they could easily build such a user interface for their DOS machines. Laughable - 11 years later was MSFT's lame response. Steve, through his genius and insight, has driven unparalleled innovation in the PC, music, tablet and mobile phone universe both inside Apple and outside. He has built an incredibly strong team to carry on that legacy.

Keep in mind that 1984 predates Windows by about a year, so "Wintel" didn't exist then. I don't know when it came to be a market force.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AHrubik View Post

Inspired yes but he is by no means equal to any of the fore mentioned people.

The team at Commodore could best be compared to Henry Ford.

Curious, for what reason? Apple I predates the PET. Apple II only came a few months later than PET.

Or, given that Apple had the first consumer, mass market all-GUI computer, then I think a Henry Ford fits there.

Or it could be making smart phones accessible to consumers. Or making tablets work outside of niche uses and bringing them to mainstream uses.

Quote:
Off the top of my head I can't think of how Walt Disney even compares. Bestowing God like qualities on the undeserving is ridiculous.

He is Steve Jobs. He has be apart of some amazing things. He DID NOT do anything by himself. It took many people to help bring about the vision that is Apple.

None of the other big names did anything by themselves either, no one can accomplish anything without involving others in some way, so I don't know what your point is three. Also, Jobs' vision was Apple's vision. I'd say that, in many ways, Jobs was for Apple as Walt was for Disney. Both men were aggressive at persuing a well-defined vision, and both men had a well-known, relentless drive for excellence, and both men were the core of their respective businesses. Is Walt a god? I'm not sure what the "god like" comment addresses.

Quote:
Originally Posted by anantksundaram View Post

The answer is, zero, if that's what the Board decides. As long as they have reported that they have one, there is no need to compromise the company, the position, or the person by revealing the details.

Out of curiosity, is that requirement even checked?
post #34 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by JeffDM View Post

Out of curiosity, is that requirement even checked?

Not as far as I know. It's certainly not required disclosure, but most good companies talk about its existence.
post #35 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by anantksundaram View Post

The answer is, zero, if that's what the Board decides. As long as they have reported that they have one, there is no need to compromise the company, the position, or the person by revealing the details.

If the board decides and the stockholders agree. A lot of them didn't. The deep irony is that the succession plan was hidden in plain sight. Everyone who cared to knew that Cook was the successor to Jobs and that Steve would be named board chair. The fact that it came down precisely that way puts the lie to the argument that Apple or anyone else would be "compromised" if they disclosed as much. The fact is, other public companies don't see the value of playing these mind games with investors. Apple is different in a lot of good ways, but this way of being different is not good.
Please don't be insane.
Reply
Please don't be insane.
Reply
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: General Discussion
AppleInsider › Forums › General › General Discussion › Steve Jobs resignation letter mocks idea that board had no succession plan