A while back I told you that Apple would be just fine without Steve Jobs and Apple is doing everything right to make sure that is the case. I have been saying that Apple needed a succession plan for a long time and while they didn’t make it public it seems that they have executed it to perfection. Yesterday, Steve Jobs, Apple’s iconic founder and visionary resigned as CEO but Apple made sure to not release that news until AFTER the markets had closed. This was to avoid any drastic midday fluctuation in the company’s stock price. They also decisively and immediately named interim CEO Tim Cook as the new CEO at the same time. These moves were smart on two fronts, it gives the market time to absorb what Jobs leaving really means which should lessen any negative reaction when the market opens in addition to letting stockholders know that the company has clear leadership and should be able to continue to deliver innovative and game-changing products.
To further lessen the blow they announced that Jobs would stay on as Chairman and a director which means that they aren’t losing his vision and input. This also sets up Cook with a high probability for success as Cook will be the one to bring the iPhone 5 to the masses without people wondering whether or not Jobs will make an appearance. It will also be Cook that introduces the iPad 3 and whatever other new products the company debuts moving forward. The timing signals to me that we aren’t far from an iPhone 5 announcement because that would further stifle any negative response to Jobs departure as CEO.
For a company that definitely walks their own line, they did it by the book this time and I think the market and consumers will respect that. So from a functional perspective I think up until now Apple has done everything right, but they still need to continue to wow us with new and innovative products or the goodwill they earned for how they orchestrated this will quickly fade. Stay tuned, I know we will.