Perhaps more than any company in recent memory, the fortunes of one mega-corporation are tied to the creative impulses of a single man. We are, of course, talking about Steve Jobs and Apple. Talk to anyone who owns a Macintosh computer, iPad, iPhone, iPod – the list goes one. Devotees of products created and marketed by the Apple Chief Executive Officer cling to them with an almost religious intensity. That’s why when news came down the line a few weeks back that Jobs was taking an indefinite leave of absence for medical reasons, you could almost hear the stock price dropping, and drop it did.
We can’t think of another company where this particular phenomenon would play out, and that’s because Apple has always been a cult stock driven by the inimitable personality of Jobs himself. Is that a bad thing? You can decide that for yourself. What we find interesting is that the man has managed to single-handedly (apparently) place his personal imprint on a company that provides out-of-this-world popular technological products without suffering a loss of what we’ll call the Jobs-mystique. The press surrounding his ongoing health issues are more akin to a president or rock star, and not the CEO of a company.
It’s well known he’s suffered from a bout with cancer. A year ago it was declared that his liver transplant was a success, but now it might seem not so much. Whatever the particulars of his medical condition might be, here’s raising a toast to what Steve Jobs has accomplished in the Microsoft Era. Long may he continue to reign as the mega-mind behind Apple, but when he faces the grim reaper, as we all will eventually, is there a plan of succession? More importantly, how can there be a plan of succession when a company has grown so far, so fast on the coattails of its CEO and his cult of personality.
Want to have a little fun? Wait for a Mac Book user to go to the refrigerator for a snack, leaving his computer unprotected in the living room. Wait a few seconds and then create an unholy ruckus, screaming about how sorry you are you accidentally spilled a Mountain Dew on his laptop. Witness the panic, the trembling, the freakish behavior as he slowly recovers from your small prank. The look in the eyes tells the tale of the complete loyalty the messiah has wrought.
The American Monetary Association Team
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