Just go to Apple's leadership page and realize: Ma has a lot less senior vice presidents than other companies of the same size. Especially after the departure of two of his most influential figures, Jony ive and Angela AhrendtsThe impression is that the Cupertino giant prefers to concentrate the core of its power between fewer heads. And that can be harmful.
This is the opinion of a former executive of the company, heard on condition of anonymity by The information. According to him, Apple's current corporate structure “does not appear to be very effective,” with many assignments scattered over a few leaders and a potential imbalance between the company's various activities.
The report classifies the structure of Ma as follows:
The number of people who report directly to Apple's about 20 key executives (those who report directly to Cook) has exploded in recent years as the company's workforce has grown strongly. For example, after retail chief Angela Ahrendts left Cupertino in April, human resources leader Deirdre O'Brien, an Apple veteran close to Cook, added retail to her responsibilities. By bringing together all those who previously responded to Ahrendts, O'Brien now has 23 direct reports more than any other executive at the top of the company. Similarly, COO Jeff Williams has absorbed Jony Ive's team, adding 2 more direct reports to his 8 existing ones.
According to sources heard by the report, this form of management reflects the corporate culture of Steve Jobs, who has always preferred small leadership teams. Returning Apple in 1997, Jobs drastically reduced the number of senior executives at the company, which in his idea would make the company more dynamic and close to each other.
The problem, of course, is that Apple's 2019 is very different and about 16x larger in 1997 than Apple's employees. Just for comparison, Ma has today 115 executives subordinates to Cook or one of his direct inferiors; Microsoft, in turn, has 546.
Is it time for Apple to change or has things worked out for Apple the way it is? We'll have to wait and see.
Meanwhile, a talent has recently left Cupertino, as reported by CNBC. It is Greg Duffyfounder of startup Dropcam Apple arrived in 2017 after leaving Google (which acquired Apple startup a few years earlier). There is no information about the reason for leaving or the fate of Duffy, but it is speculated that at Apple he worked on a satellite internet project.
Isabel Ge Mahe
Meanwhile, Apple's vice president and chief operating officer of Greater China, Isabel Ge Mahe, was announced as one of three new members of the board of directors / advisers of the Starbucks.
Besides her, they joined the coffee giant Richard E. Allison, from Domino’s, and Andrew Campionfrom Nike. Professionals will continue to perform their duties in their usual businesses; The position at Starbucks serves to oversee the company's activities and strategize, with different and diverse views just as Disney's Bob Iger did at Apple this week.