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The decisions that lead to the success of Apple Inc

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The decisions that lead to the success of Apple Inc

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The reality of the technology has changed quite significantly in the past ten to fifteen years. People now find themselves controlled by the gadgets and items that they have. In order to make decisions, people use the things that guide them and this is can be seen all over the world. Apple is one of the leading mobile and computer technology companies in the world. Since the beginning, Apple has had the intention to succeed, and almost everyone can acknowledge this fact. People are surrounded by Apple TV’s, Mac Laptops, iPads and iPhones, among others. The gadgets can be used to satisfy various needs, such as sending emails, making calls, playing games, among others. Steve Jobs is the man responsible for the success of Apple, and he used his creativity to improve reality. This paper seeks to give a critical analysis of how Steve Jobs used his unique leadership and decision making abilities in order to make Apple Inc, a success.

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The first product that Apple introduced to the market was known as Apple I. It was quite different from the Apple products that people see and use today. It was a handmade computer that Steve Wonziak, the co-founder of Apple constructed. It did not have a graphic user interface and thus its buyers had to add a display as well as a keyboard. Steve Jobs the other co-founder convinced his partner to sell the product commercially. In the year 1976, they put up the Apple I for sale at a price of $666.66 (Gallo 14). Wozniak and Jobs ventured on to create extremely innovative and creative products. Later on, their company had total sales of more than $ 1000000. However, in 1983, another product known as Apple Lisa was introduced, but it did not succeed. Furthermore, there were many internal conflicts in the company and it seemed that Apple’s future would be in jeopardy.

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In the year 1997, Jobs returned to Apple after some time away from work in order to save the company that was going to ruins. When he returned he came up with the latest era of Apple that the world would recognize. The first thing he did was to change the corporate culture of Apple. While Jobs was away, the employees were quite open about their projects and he introduced a policy known to be closed door. Up to date, Apple does everything possible to ensure that its technology is always protected from outsiders. Also, the information that it has is valuable and thus cannot be given to anyone who is not an asset to the company. As part of the changes to improve Apple, Jobs came up with a flat organizational structure instead of having various management layers (Gallo 33). He was the only person who could address the employees directly. However, the most noticeable change in the company was the product lines that were to exist in the electronics industry.

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The iPod was launched in the year 2001, and this gadget changed the music industry. Also, Apple came up with ITunes software that ensured that users could upload songs into other Apple products. This meant that people could easily put their personalized songs into various libraries. The ITunes became popular and today people download millions of tunes that they like. In the year 2007, Jobs changed the name of the company to Apple Inc, from the previous Apple Computer, Inc. This meant that Apple not only dealt in the computer manufacturing, but also in other consumer electronics. Some of these products were iPads, iPhones, ITunes, iPods and the Apple TV, among others. Apple wanted to re-invent the computers that it already had in the market. When the iPad was introduced it started to take control of the market share with regards to the computer industry. Once the tablet was introduced there was a drastic decline in the sales of net books, laptops and desktops. Even analysts believe that the tablets have a bright future in terms of growth (Gallo 56).

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Steve Jobs is a leader who seized opportunities that were available to him at all times. He used strategic planning and the approach of positive deviance in order to identify existing opportunities. Also, Jobs studied the external environment so that he could position his company to seize opportunities. Therefore, this requires that a leader should not only be interested in the stakeholders’ needs, but the impact of the needs. A company should be able to create and reinvent new services, customers, products and markets. The skill needed to seize opportunities is part of leadership whereby an individual can take control of external forces and trends. Afterwards, they use this knowledge to formulate strategies and build scenarios that will differentiate their company from others (Stavros & Hinrichs 29).

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Apple was positioned in order to seize opportunities; Jobs aligned the strategy of the firm while focusing on external opportunities. He made sure to acknowledge the fact that Apple did not have a large niche in the computer industry. Jobs had a strategy that would be long-term and thus he would venture into various markets served by technology. He was able to succeed because he seized opportunities and even adapted to initiating and recognizing trends. His strategic solutions were welcoming to opportunistic perspective and this was possible because he pushed his employees. They were meant to ensure that Apple’s future was secure at all times. His role as a leader was to create innovative products because consumers are not sure of what they really need. In fact, Jobs sometimes compared himself to Henry Ford who did everything possible to ensure that his customers would have a variety of motor vehicles to choose from. The fact that Jobs was a risk taker made him succeed when grabbing opportunities. He embraced creative disruption in order to change the rules of the industry (Gallo 58).

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Steve Jobs had desire to have a learning organization and thus used his talent to ensure that he achieved this purpose. The advantage of learning organizations is that they are highly skilled in retaining, transferring, acquiring and creating knowledge. In turn, the employees can use the knowledge so as to have productive results. In such type of companies, knowledge is not only for the purpose of adapting and reacting to the external conditions of an organization. Learning assists in employing a feedback system that is double-loop with regards to a company’s holistic and reflective actions (Stavros & Hinrichs 45). The strategy approach used by learning organizations is quite resourceful because employees can be able to reconfigure knowledge so as to achieve the company’s goals.

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There was a constant need by Steve Jobs to come up with strategic stories that would provide directions, inspire and engage directions for its stakeholders. Job’s transformational leadership helped in positioning Apple so that it could seize opportunities, as well as build core capabilities. This would then produce excellent results that would exceed the stakeholder’s expectations (Stavros & Hinrichs 68). It is no wonder that many business students from all over the world study about Steve Job’s leadership as well as the decisions he made to ensure the success of Apple. He is a true example of a leader that revived a company that had many problems to be fixed and he used conventional solutions. Jobs envisioned various marketplace possibilities then used that to expand the value preposition of Apple. This means that he was able to connect the status quo of the consumers beyond what they had ever expected. It is thus possible to claim that the decisions made by Jobs created memorable moments in the history of business.

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It is quite evident that Apple has an optimistic and bright future ahead of it. Most consumers are cult followers of its products and thus quite loyal to it. Apple services and products are made to ensure that the consumer experiences superior solutions when compared to those being offered by the competitors. For example, one of the new offers being introduced by Apple is the iCloud that will impact the music industry. Apple wants to partner with top record labels so that consumers can upload their favorite music at one go. Currently, consumers can only upload individual or single songs and this lessens their music experience. However, it should be known that Amazon and Google offer almost similar services but Apple will have many songs in its playlist. It is because it has the support of record labels and that of iTunes. Upon seizing this wonderful opportunities, Apple is sure to increase its share in the consumer electronics and music industry (Gallo 81).

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Apple has also faced some threats such as lawsuits from its competitors who believe that there intellectual property was stolen. Furthermore, the tight hold it has over its services and products is another disadvantage that it has. When compared to Google, the latter has an approach that is open. This has in turn allowed for innovation as well as collaboration with other sources (Gallo 83). The main competitors of Apple’s iPhones are the android phones produced by Google as they continue to have a large market share. Therefore, Apple will have to re-examine its closed system to find out if it works best for the company.

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In conclusion, the past few years have seen quite a tremendous improvement in Apple. It has quickly gained pace in the consumer electronics and computer industry that is constantly evolving. The diversification route it has decided to follow has enhanced its product success as well as its corporate culture. Apple has been propelled to heights that no one could have envisioned when Wozniak and Jobs first sold the Apple I, in the year 1976. Apple has shown that it is clearly not stopping any time soon and the consumers will not reduce the admiration they have for it. Therefore, no one can deny the fact that the wise decisions made by Steve Jobs have made Apple a company that is recognized globally. Indeed, the use of a positive deviant strategy by Jobs has made Apple reach its ultimate goals.

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Work Cited

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Gallo, C. The Presentation Secrets of Steve Jobs. New York: McGraw Hill, 2009.Print.

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Stavros, J. & Hinrichs, G. The Thin Book of Soar: Building Strengths–based Strategy. Bend, Oregon: Thin Book Publishing Company, 2009.Print.

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