Executive Decisions (ATTN: Apple Management)
So sorry to see it happen, but the areas that Mr. Forestall was responsible for were the ones that seem to be far below the Apple level of standards expected by everyone: investors, customers, competitors, employees, Apple Executive Management, the Board of Directors, the marketing and advertising teams, suppliers, Tim Cook, historians/biographers, etc.
I'm sure he was under tremendous pressure to produce, BUT if it isn't perfect plus (as in perfect with a surprise 'even better' factor that is quintessential Apple, then KEEP IT UNDER WRAPS.
If you are pressured to produce and you can't make something that does hit that lofty target, even after buying small startups that give you big pieces on a silver platter, well then, perhaps we should get some help, or maybe you are the problem? Who approved those development timelines?
Can't meet them and tons of pressure? Then you're expected to push back firmly then scoot (Scott) to a side where something CAN be done to the lofty Apple level previously set.
And maybe the side you need to be on is outside. Who knows without being there. I'm just saying (what many others are as well.)
And have you a QA team, QA plan, methodology, and did you execute it? Well, it is ineffective.
Did you CREATE the QA system, processes, and teams?
Then that is an ineffective system which must be learned from and also replaced after yet another task ... a good old fashioned post mortem.
What the hell happened?
You learn less from mistakes when you fire the people who made them and presumably know now what they did wrong and have lots of experience with the situations that arise.
So if people ARE fired then it follows that the problem is human-based, largely emotional, not so objective issues that someone above THEM feels that he/she would be ineffective at managing them through the failures/lessons on to the next project's success.
Cop out or decisively cutting losses quickly?
And how is the 'air' at Apple? Is the atmosphere taking on a negative charge? That is lethal like cancer.
Who is rectifying that? Bubbly Mr. Cook? HR? The reverberations of a powerful Steve Jobs spirit, personality, charisma, his known defined history to lead in absentia, ... his energy must be coiled up tight in Infinite Loops of frustration purgatory trapped in Cupertino. I'm sure Steve feels heaven can't be heaven if he has to give up so much control!
Tim, I love you and think you are brilliant, but you will never be Steve as you know so think different but be yourself. I've never seen a less gay gay man, so dry in an obvious role of "I'm Straight Steve 2" so you're going to have to be very Apple-ish and drop Steve Emulation mode on your next revision in order to flourish in the future, which is NOW.
Of course you want to take "Steve" in all his glory and update the Core Tim software with the "Steve" extensions you've already assimilated quite well.
It's just that you can't be The Fake Steve Jobs.
You are the remarkable Tim Cook protege of Demi-God Steve Jobs. That has made you even more remarkable.
For better or for worse Apple will become Tim Cook's company IF you have the balls to own it.
In theory you should know everything Steve knew AND everything you brought to the table and have learned additionally.
Personality and genetics are sadly quite a bitch to try to change.
Steve wasn't perfect, but he had one thing that is squelched by you trying to become his copy: charisma factors.
Not that Tim doesn't have charisma potential, but it is greyed out by the faux finish. Sponge painting Steve all over your facade.
A little confidence under the daunting halogen microscope of celebrity and cultural nostalgicism, you must burst forth with the inherent Light of Tim (as presented from a well-coached presentation of traits that serve apple, the industry, and indeed society.) I mean that's really what Steve did after all: guided by his noble core values, amplified by his confident passion, and founded on his intelligence and education. You, Tim, can authentically own this approach easily I believe by adopting (authentically) the same frame of mind.
After all is said and done, you still don't have the public speaking talent that causes people to be excited, HIRE someone to do whatever facets you cannot handle of this task.
And I sure hope you've trained someone to be the COO with your magic supply-chain wizardry that Steve could have never achieved alone. You unfortunately will not have the time to do that job effectively at all, never theless after the product families have grown.
Right? I hope you agree.
And if you don't, I know you are smart enough to see the holes I've left. It's very hard to see inside an Apple without taking a knife to it in person; peel core slice but do it before it rots.
I hope I've provoked thoughts constructively and bluntly reflected some perspectives that possibly are varied... like turning a mulch bin so that stuff gets mixed up to create a better richer end result.
I'd love to help. I'm instantly available, full-time. Apple is my passion also without evert having received a check from the company.
Even broaching the subject of employment is obviously so outside the corporate norms and procedures in place that even I perceive it as a far stretch of possibility.
But I think different, I think anything is possible, and if you'd rather hire someone who *always* follows procedure, the crowd, and 'the norm' then there are healthy numbers in the herd.
I've have sometimes thought so far outside the box that I can have trouble finding my box again.
I assure you however, when it's appropriate and optimal, I embrace the procedures and (optimal range of) 'the norm.'
If you'd take a chance, deviate from SOP, think different once more, contact me so that we may discuss where you would benefit most from my passion energy interest experience and values would benefit Apple most, I'd be both thrilled and honored to hear from you (dear eventual reader theoretically targeted (and pssessing authority.) Indulge me and my invitation please.
I hope this bloggeditorial is met with the feeling of humor and provocative but positive & constructive intent I hoped for.
Lifetime member of American Mensa
Proud Apple stockholder for over 10 years
Owner of Apple products continually since 1982.
... and I'm much less verbose on the phone.
323-270-4653 to reach my new iPhone 5