Apple's Future Jobs


My first personal computer, the Apple Lisa 2/10, preceded a Macintosh Plus, which I continue to store in my garage until I determine what to do with it. When Apple filed for an initial public offering (IPO) I bought stock. (I no longer own it.) I also owned the first iPod, video iPod, and tablet. Steve Jobs, whose resignation as CEO was made public on Wednesday, handed the reins to Apple COO Tim Cook. No one would argue the value of Jobs' numerous accomplishments -- among them bringing the company back from the brink of failure.

Jobs should have stepped down much sooner to preserve his health, which I know little about. However, I do know from experience with cancer patients that he likely faces serious health problems related to pancreatic cancer and the liver transplant.

Analysts do not expect Jobs' resignation to detour Apple's product roadmap. Piper Jaffray Analyst Gene Munster wrote in a brief: "We believe Tim Cook will carry out a long-term (5-year) roadmap that he and Jobs jointly established including several iterations of Apple's existing products as well as new categories, like an Apple Television as soon as late 2012.

In November, we discovered through a Bloomberg video profile that when it came time for Sergey Brin and Larry Page to consider a CEO to run Google, they initially wanted to offer Jobs the position.

Forrester Research Analyst and Author Josh Bernoff laid out a well-documented road to Jobs' successes from Apple to Pixar. As Bernoff put it, Jobs changed the world 5.5 times, and no one else even comes close.

Although Apple's COO moves into the CEO position, Simon Buckingham, CEO at Appitalism, a mobile software development house and online apps store, believes the company's board left a gap in its operational leadership. "When a company moves the COO into the CEO position, they expect the guy in charge of operations like the supply chain, the manufacturing and the retail agreements to run things," he said.

Buckingham said the operations guy buries his head in spreadsheets and worries about component shortages being built into iPhones, iPads and Apple TVs. He also focuses on where to manufacture them. "It's not a skill set CEOs need," Buckingham said.

Regardless of how the market reacts or how business views the decision to step down, thank goodness you came to your senses, Jobs. Enjoy your time with your family and friends.


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