What is it about the chief executive officer role of a technology company that seems to attract such peculiar personalities? Even years after his untimely passing, Steve Jobs is still a regular topic of discussion in the tech world, prompting books, movies and parodies that have attempted to encapsulate his volatile, fascinating persona.
But in his stead, a different kind of CEO has taken over at Apple. Tim Cook is one of the most private people in the industry, separating his personal life from his public life as often as he possibly can, but Adam Lashinsky’s 2012 book Inside Apple was one of the first to delve a little deeper into who Cook really is.
Business Insider collected 12 of the most interesting Tim Cook facts from Lashinsky’s book and various other sources. We’ve included a few below, but be sure to check out the article (or pick up the book) for more insight into Cook’s life.
“Many believed he’d never be CEO,” Lashinsky writes. In fact, one of the only things that they had in common was their “fondness for the rock-and-roll greats of the 1960s.” But the day that Jobs stepped down from his position, Cook was there to take his place. “The board never seriously considered naming anyone other than Cook to the position.”
BI also included one of the best stories of Cook’s tenure at Apple, from a Fortune Magazine piece in 2008:
One day back then, he convened a meeting with his team, and the discussion turned to a particular problem in Asia.
“This is really bad,” Cook told the group. “Someone should be in China driving this.” Thirty minutes into that meeting Cook looked at Sabih Khan, a key operations executive, and abruptly asked, without a trace of emotion, “Why are you still here?”
Khan, who remains one of Cook’s top lieutenants to this day, immediately stood up, drove to San Francisco International Airport, and, without a change of clothes, booked a flight to China with no return date, according to people familiar with the episode. The story is vintage Cook: demanding and unemotional.
Cook has a long road ahead of him, with new Apple product lines on the horizon for the first time in years. We’re sure to learn plenty more about the man in the years to come.