Tim Cook, at Apple’s forth quarter 2008 earnings call in early 2009, right after Jobs took his first leave of absence to receive a liver transplant:
…There is extraordinary breadth and depth and tenure among the Apple executive team, and they lead 35,000 employees that I would call wicked smart – and that’s in all areas of the company from engineering to marketing to operations and sales and all the rest. And the values of our company are extremely well entrenched. We believe that we are on the face of the earth to make great products and that’s not changing.
We are constantly focusing on innovating. We believe in the simple not the complex. We believe that we need to own and control the primary technologies behind the products that we make, and participate only in markets where we can make a significant contribution.
We believe in saying no to thousands of projects, so that we can really focus on the few that are truly important and meaningful to us. We believe in deep collaboration and cross-pollination of our groups, which allow us to innovate in a way that others cannot.
And frankly, we don’t settle for anything less than excellence in every group in the company, and we have the self-honesty to admit when we’re wrong and the courage to change. And I think regardless of who is in what job those values are so embedded in this company that Apple will do extremely well…
Just like everyone, I want Steve Jobs to get better. I want to live in a world where the man who launched the PC revolution is still leading it. All the news today, however, is about how doomed Apple is without Jobs. It’s a little over the top. Look at Tim “acting CEO” Cook’s words. That is an off the cusp speech and it is pitch perfect. Those words could’ve come right from Steve’s brain. Apple is going to be fine.
Hat tip to Asymco