Fortune Calls Apple CEO Tim Cook a ‘Global Role Model’

Fortune Calls Apple CEO Tim Cook a ‘Global Role Model’

Tim CookThe magazine’s eclectic list also includes Taylor Swift (No. 6) one spot behind Pope Francis (No. 5), along with Mark Zuckerberg (No. 25), Jeff Bezos (No. 27), and Jimmy Fallon (No. 45), along with world leaders and activists. The editors cite Apple stock’s and the innovations of Apple Pay and the Apple Watch. But it is the fact that Cook’s “gradually becoming more open and outspoken, including on a variety of non-corporate social issues. By announcing that he is gay, Cook also has done something few would have predicted: become a global role model,” which also helped him land at the No. 1 spot.

Excerpts from the interview in the issue include some interesting insights:

On what he learned taking over for Steve Jobs, and how he dealt with the scrutiny:

“I have thick skin, but it got thicker. What I learned after Steve passed away, what I had known only at a theoretical level, an academic level maybe, was that he was an incredible heat shield for us, his executive team. None of us probably appreciated that enough because it’s not something we were fixated on. We were fixated on our products and running the business. But he really took any kind of spears that were thrown. He took the praise as well. But to be honest, the intensity was more than I would ever have expected…. You pick up certain skills when the truck is running across your back. Maybe this will be something great that I’ll use in other aspects of my life over time.”

On his decision to come out publicly last fall:

“I didn’t feel like business was exactly leading the way in the executive suite…. To be honest, if I would not have come to the conclusion that it would likely help other people, I would have never done it…. There’s no joy in me putting my life in view.”

On responding to his critics:

“I’m not running for office…. I don’t need your vote. I have to feel myself doing what’s right. If I’m the arbiter of that instead of letting the guy on TV be that or someone who doesn’t know me at all, then I think that’s a much better way to live.”

On his education as CEO:

“You’re engaged in so many things that each particular thing gets a little less attention. You need to be able to operate on shorter cycles, less data points, less knowledge, less facts. When you’re an engineer, you want to analyze things a lot. But if you believe that the most important data points are people, then you have to make conclusions in relatively short order. Because you want to push the people who are doing great. And you want to either develop the people who are not or, in a worst case, they need to be somewhere else.”

On the company becoming more open to the media:

“My objective is to raise the public profile of several of the folks on the executive team, and others as well. Because I think that’s good for Apple at the end of the day.”

On Apple investors:

“The kind of investors we seek are long term because that’s how we make our decisions…. If you’re a short-term investor, obviously you’ve got the right to buy the stock and trade it the way you want. It’s your decision. But I want everybody to know that’s not how we run the company.”

On the company’s new “Apple Campus 2,” Cook calls it, “the mother of all products,” and on the new 1,000-seat auditorium which will be the company’s new site for all its public presentations other than its annual developers conference, Cook adds: “No more scheduling months ahead of time around other people’s schedules.”

Read the complete list here.

Previous Question Of The Day IV
Next That Article About Gay Men And What They’re Still Learning To Love About Their Bodies

About author

You might also like

The Happenings 36 Comments

‘For All Intents And Purposes, I Am A Woman.’ – Bruce Jenner Says, While Clarifying That He Is Not Gay

Bruce Jenner is explaining his sexuality after revealing to Diane Sawyer that he is transitioning into a woman. During his exclusive sit-down interview with ABC News, Bruce shared that he

The Happenings 2 Comments

WikiLeaks exposes the private lives of people in Saudi Arabia in ‘reckless’ mass data dump

Whistle-blowing group WikiLeaks is under fire for publishing Saudi government data that exposes the private lives of Saudi people, including gay men, in Saudi Arabia, leaving them at risk of

The Happenings 2 Comments

The Internet goes wild with rumours that Kanye West romancing Jeffree Star amid speculation of divorce from Kim Kardashian

After facing rumors regarding the status of their marriage for years, reports are circulating that Kim Kardashian West and Kanye West are headed for a divorce. The A-listers got married


  1. Dennis Macaulay
    March 30, 05:50 Reply

    Taylor Swift? No 6 on a list of greatest world leaders? Taylor Swift? Did i read right?

    • Façade
      March 30, 06:01 Reply

      I thought I was the only one that noticed

    • pinkpanthertb
      March 30, 06:02 Reply

      Hahahahahahahaa. Be careful how you deride her. Some of her fans can Swiftly handle you here o. *looking around for James*

      • Dennis Macaulay
        March 30, 06:10 Reply

        Besides writing songs about boys who fucked her and dumped her and slut shaming girls, how has she been a leader? What social causes has she been involved in?

        Most influential people list maybe, most popular people list maybe, bur ahead of zuckerberg? Angela Merkel? Are you freaking kidding me?

    • Khaleesi
      March 30, 10:16 Reply

      Nne, shebi you see that kain thing? Taylor Swift!?*^^, i cant even mention 3 of her songs … tchwww

    • JustJames
      March 30, 10:25 Reply

      Yass Taylor!! Sure she writes quite a lot about breakups and whatnot but she also sings about being who you are nd not apologizing for it. She’s one of the most down down to earth celebrities out there and reaches out constantly to her fans. She is also quite fashionable without having to expose bits of her body like most other artists do. She let’s her talent as a song writer speak for her and she’s even managed to transition to the pop genre successfully. For crying out loud her albums beat record after record. It means she’s doing something right, right? She might not have it all figured out but she’s making use of what she has, break ups and all, to be an awesome person and shine.

      Meanwhile you’re being a pitakwa Lord and riding bikes all over… She’s younger than you Btw. Don’t spoil someone’s shine.

      • Dennis Macaulay
        March 30, 12:39 Reply

        Writing songs? reaching out to her fans? Selling world records? Fashionable without showing skin?


        These are the things that qualify her to be number 6 on the list of greatest world leaders? Like that time the Jenner girls were ranked ahead of Malala on the Time teen power list!

        I need to have a good laugh biko

      • Jeova Sanctus Unus
        April 01, 20:02 Reply

        Hello James, Hollywood knows TS is an A-list escort. She’s nothing like the good girl the public is fed. It’s all marketing.

  2. Max
    March 30, 05:55 Reply

    Taylor Swift kwa? Hian

  3. Teflondon
    March 30, 06:49 Reply

    On his decision to come out publicly last fall:

    “I didn’t feel like business was exactly leading the way in the executive suite…. To be honest, if I would not have come to the conclusion that it would likely help other people, I would have never done it…. There’s no joy in me putting my life in view.”

    This only butress the facts I have been preaching here since.. I don’t see the need to come out to your loved ones or anyone for that matter except it is helping a cause (of which you have to be someone influential).
    All the ‘Whailing’ and ‘Moaning’ about the need to come out to your people to have some sort of validation of peace of mind.. Still baffles me. (But what do I know)
    This guy above only came out because he thought it will help a cause. Other than that he wouldn’t have.
    Taylor swift being number 6 on this list.. Only mocks the credibility of this list. I don’t think coming out of the closet is enough reason to just make someone No 1 on world leader ranking. (Asides that i havent heard of anything he has done to influence the world in anyway) It’s just not enough for me.

    • pinkpanthertb
      March 30, 07:20 Reply

      Let me understand something, Teflondon. So if you knew that coming out is the only way your family will learn not to expect some societal accomplishments from you, you shouldn’t do it until you’re sure your coming out will help the eradication of world hunger, right? That’s your point of view?

      • Teflondon
        March 30, 09:00 Reply

        I don’t see the need.. Except it’s absolutely neccesary. All the “HuluBalo” of coming out to your loved ones (or anyone at that) is just overrated in my opinion… I just don’t see the need for people’s validation, sympathy, understanding etc which are some of the perks of coming out..

        • pinkpanthertb
          March 30, 09:08 Reply

          You know, validation et al is not the only reason people come out. Some do it just to let their family know not to expect anything from them.

      • Teflondon
        March 30, 09:17 Reply

        No matter how you dress it.. That is still some kind of “need for Validation”.. When you don’t want your family to except you to do certain things.(like getting married)
        I am not saying coming out to your family is all wrong.. What I am preaching against is those that have attached this ‘Ritual-like’ importance to coming out to thier family.. For example you see a man living a good life no problem whatsoever.. And then he just feels he needs (like some sort of obligation) to tell his family about his sexual orientation for no particular reason.. In which most cases in Nigeria brings about all kinds of stress that can lead to untimely death sef. That need (obligation if you like) is what I am against. It’s really not neccesary.

      • Max
        March 30, 09:48 Reply

        “For example you see a man living a good life no problem whatsoever..”
        And who told you they’re living a good life??

        You actually think you’re living?
        As in you Teflondon(with the Fake name) is living?

      • sinnex
        March 30, 10:17 Reply

        @Max even in the so-called free world they make use fake names on public forum. You don’t seriously expect people to make use of their real names on the internet, do you? Even in Nairaland which is for the general public, people still make use of moniker. Unfortunately, you don’t have a point here.

      • Teflondon
        March 30, 11:52 Reply

        **Skips Over Khaleesi’s Periodic (you know that time of the month) usual (Goat) bleeting**

        This was your comment from some days back on the Bisi Alimi article…

        “Had to step into my car to watch it. They were having their hypocritical Friday prayer.
        This man keeps inspiring me day after day.”
        “MY” “CAR”
        Giving us (non suspecting) readers of the blog.. That much detail about your ” Awesome ” life isn’t necessary next time . Talk about Fake.. depths of fakeness doesn’t go any lower than this darling.

      • Max
        March 30, 12:08 Reply

        Take off that cheap suit of jealousy from your body and burn it to ashes.. Doesn’t look good on you. @Tef
        You’re not living. You’re merely surviving and hiding in your 10ft closet.
        Shut your pie hole and Listen to the voice of reason for once. Stop being such a fool..

      • sinnex
        March 30, 12:17 Reply

        @Tef I saw that comment, but I decided to jump and pass before someone calls me a stalker..

      • Max
        March 30, 12:23 Reply

        I’m glad you know your name,@ Sinnex

    • Khaleesi
      March 30, 10:24 Reply

      Am convinced you exist in a perpetual haze of negativity with a large bottle of an infusion of bile and opium strapped permanently to your neck ***Pauses while you take a long slow drag from the said bottle*** ***gives you a a scorn filled look of disdain and contempt*** Tim Cook came out to the Global Media for reasons which he has listed above, its a great and commendable feat and if you think that the coming out of such an infliential global icon is worth nothing, well … NEWSFLASH::: Your opinion dont amount to shit!! cos he’s up there as No1 while you’re far down there in Number ermmmm ***uses floodlight to try and find you deep down in the dark abyss where nothing exists***, there’s your answer … Now, what i meant with regards to coming out, coming out to your closed loved ones, persons with whom you share a close bond is an can be a beautiful thing and a source of strength if its handled properly and if its DONE RIGHT ***hoping you still have some functional brain cells to notice the emphasis and implication of “DONE RIGHT” … Now, run along, you and your bottle of bile infused opium and take your stupid haze of negativity with you!!!
      ***leans back on ornate throne with perfectly manicured nails hanging down off edges***

      • Khaleesi
        March 30, 10:28 Reply

        @TeflonDon, above comment is directed at you …

    • Colossus
      March 30, 16:41 Reply

      You’ve not heard of anything he had done to influence the world in any way? Go and read the article again, this time don’t focus on just the fact that he came out of the closet and then you’ll see how he is leading the most successful brand in the world into more successful achievements.

  4. sinnex
    March 30, 08:02 Reply

    I really don’t understand the need for the post. Is it that he became the first among the World’s 50 Leaders because he is gay or because he is the CEO of APPLE? Some people just love celebrating nothing actually. Just because he is gay doesn’t make him special. I am sure this is not the first time we would be having a list of World’s Greatest Leaders, who was the first last year? Or the year before? It is no big deal to be the first in the list, besides the same list has Taylor Swift at number 6.

    Some peeps would sit down and think that because Tim Cook is gay and he is the first on the list and the CEO of Apple, that means they would automatically become rich and famous. If you don’t word hard you don’t expect to gain recognition. Your sexuality won’t help you.

    • pinkpanthertb
      March 30, 08:08 Reply

      Sinnex, there really isn’t any need for the venom. He’s a gay man who became recognised. So he’s news. Simple as that. All this compulsory discontent you and your boyfriend feel you must pour out everyday is getting old. Some things are simply to be taken at face value. All this preaching you burst out with is the unnecessary thing here. Jeez.

      • Teflondon
        March 30, 09:10 Reply

        You just don’t get it pinky.. Do you? We need to stop seeking that “special” treatment.. We think we deserve cause of our sexual orientation.. Ok maybe Sinnex sounded alittle off.. The issue here is why on earth has this man made No 1 on this ranking.. He hasn’t done anything note-worthy to attain this rank.. Asides coming out of the closet I.e which I think is just not enough to make someone just rise up to the rank of being No 1 on world leader ranking.. The facts that Taylor swift is No 6 on this list only rubbishes the credibility of those who compiled the list and the list it self.
        **kindly remove this notion that someone is on a dog-bone vendatta on this blog** we come here to share opinions and also learn (hopefull).. From each other. We are more opinionated than eachother.. For those with strong diff opinions.. Don’t think they are on some kind of mission.
        Just get that outta your mind already

      • sinnex
        March 30, 09:10 Reply

        “…All this compulsory discontent you and your boyfriend feel you must pour out everyday is getting old”

        I think you are now being petty.
        You could have made more sense without adding this…

      • sinnex
        March 30, 09:35 Reply

        You still don’t get it, na only me waka come. Nobody is expected to like my opinion. Just because I and @Tef agree on some things, that doesn’t mean we would agree on everything. Won’t that be weird and maybe a little creepy?
        Just because you are gay doesn’t make you any special. Tef was just reiterating what I said, maybe in a calmer way.
        My question here is, supposing Tim Cook did not come out last year or so, would he have made the list? Or better still, would that have made him less of a person than he is now? Or maybe, would you have posted this on KD?

    • Mandy
      March 30, 08:14 Reply

      ‘Some peeps would sit down and think that because Tim Cook is gay and he is the first on the list and the CEO of Apple, that means they would automatically become rich and famous. If you don’t work hard you don’t expect to gain recognition. Your sexuality won’t help you.’

      Your patronisation knows no bounds. Give some people credit to know that simply being gay does not translate to success. After all, everyone knew that Tim Cook was already a CEO before he announced his sexuality to the world.
      Sometimes you want to sound preachy. But you come off really fool—er, full of yourself.

  5. Absalom
    March 30, 10:25 Reply

    Teflondon, please hear this about coming out:

    The ONLY time validation comes into the coming out process is when a successful public figure comes out, thereby sending the message out there to young and insecure gay people that it is ok to be gay.

    Other than that: coming out is a personal defying of social oppression. It is a rejection of the shame you’re expected to feel for being you. It is about being open about yourself without fear or intimidation. Coming out is not you asking permission from others to live; it is you demanding an inalienable right to live without being harassed. Coming out is you demanding that society stops pretending you do not exist (visibility). Coming out means you’re no longer in hiding. And why are you hiding anyway? Are you a thief?

    I think it was Anderson Cooper or so who said they came out because they felt their silence sent the message that being gay was something to be ashamed of. And mind you, Cooper (or whoever it was) was already out to family and colleagues long before the media announcement.

    It’s good that you recognise the closet exists – we all do – but, please, stop celebrating it. It’s really disrespectful to the plight of LGBT people. It’s the biggest homophobic scam ever and, unfortunately, you’ve bought into it.

    • sinnex
      March 30, 10:49 Reply

      Owwwww….now I am gonna cry…

    • Khaleesi
      March 30, 11:08 Reply

      Thanks Absalom, you captured the essence of what i’ve all along been trying to say. I hope that finally this deeply internalized homophobe can finally see …

    • Max
      March 30, 11:18 Reply

      Preach Absie, Preach!!!!!!!!!!

    • pinkpanthertb
      March 30, 11:19 Reply

      I doubt very much you’ll educate him with this, Absalom.

    • Teflondon
      March 30, 11:38 Reply

      Ok baby!! I’ll buy into your reasoning for now… Finally someone that is making sense and making me understand.
      By the way I have a crush on your persona
      **cover face**

      • Max
        March 30, 12:12 Reply

        Akwuna oku!!!.. Inviting people to a lunch date he can’t pay for.. *stiffled giggle..
        And sorry to rain on your parade, Absie is bttm..
        So your dream of being impaled by a titan sized D is never gonna happen.

      • sinnex
        March 30, 12:19 Reply

        ” Inviting people to a lunch date he can’t pay for..”

        @Max, seriously? Was this necessary?

      • Max
        March 30, 12:25 Reply

        Read all your comments to me and ask yourself that same question.@Sinnex

      • Teflondon
        March 30, 13:16 Reply

        Pinky do add that to my list will you… Thank you very much!

        “And sorry to rain on your parade, Absie is bttm..
        So your dream of being impaled by a titan sized D is never gonna happen.”
        I smell some sort of jealousy from Max here… And who is to say I am not a Good top at that! You didn’t have to let the world know.. What Absie is.. Bottom (Not sure he would be cool with that, oh well what do I know)

        And will Max and Sinnex get a room already.. This Tom and Jerry game yall are playing at. It’s getting tiring.
        **bemused face**

      • Max
        March 30, 14:44 Reply

        I don’t think Absie’s bed preference has ever been a secret. Since you’re good at stalking, why don’t you check KD archives..

Leave a Reply