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Steve Jobs speaks on personal health

updated 10:10 am EDT, Mon July 28, 2008

Jobs on personal health

Steve Jobs has not had a recurrence of his pancreatic cancer, writes the New York Times. In speaking with the Apple CEO via phone, the newspaper says it has learned more about Jobs' medical problems, which were previously described as "a private matter" during a recent third-quarter earnings call. Concerns over a gaunt appearance are said to have aided in a brief stock slide at the time; more recently, though, third-party sources are said to have downplayed any talk of cancer.

The Times now writes that Jobs himself has echoed these statements, although no specifics are available, due to a demand for speaking off the record. Jobs' condition is said to be "a good deal more than 'a common bug,'" according to the paper, but not a risk to his life, or any return of cancer.

The health of Jobs is generally considered vital to Apple, as he dictates many of the priorities and approaches the company uses for its products. Should Jobs die or otherwise leave his duties, Apple stock could plummet as much as 25 percent, the Times suggests.




by MacNN Staff

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  1. testudo

    Joined: Dec 1969

    +5

    private

    Apparently Jobs has realized his health is a matter of concern for investors, which it is (more so than some CEOs, less for others - if people found out Ballmer's in great health, MS stock would plummet!).

    However, as for this:
    which were previously described as "a private matter"

    It is a private matter. I believe HIPPA regulations prevent the dissemination of personal health info without explicit permission (and it may not have come up beforehand for Steve to give that permission for the conf. call).

    Even the President of the US has to give his permission to have his medical reports released.

  1. hamishb

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    Prez health

    Good point re the Prez - even Josiah Bartlett didn't advise his closest team members let alone the public of his MS condition.

  1. elo8

    Joined: Dec 1969

    -3

    Jobs/Apple brands

    While the decision to keep his health private may be Jobs' prerogative at this juncture, it would also make sense of him to take advantage of this crisis of faith to address the issue of succession, which will inevitably come up again at a later date, even if he is given a clean bill of health tomorrow.

    Dr. Tantillo ('the marketing doctor') did a recent post on his branding blog (http://blog.marketingdoctor.tv), asserting that Jobs and Apple are two separate brands--Jobs one that is irreplaceable but that can, at this juncture, help ensure Apple's longevity--and that, with the question of Jobs' health at least being raised, this is definitely the time to do so.

    Full post: http://blog.marketingdoctor.tv/2008/07/24/brand-advisory.aspx

  1. elo8

    Joined: Dec 1969

    -5

    Jobs/Apple brands

    While the decision to keep his health private may be Jobs' prerogative at this juncture, it would also make sense of him to take advantage of this crisis of faith to address the issue of succession, which will inevitably come up again at a later date, even if he is given a clean bill of health tomorrow.

    Dr. Tantillo ('the marketing doctor') did a recent post on his branding blog (http://blog.marketingdoctor.tv), asserting that Jobs and Apple are two separate brands--Jobs one that is irreplaceable but that can, at this juncture, help ensure Apple's longevity--and that, with the question of Jobs' health at least being raised, this is definitely the time to do so.

    Full post: http://blog.marketingdoctor.tv/2008/07/24/brand-advisory.aspx

  1. ezylstra

    Joined: Dec 1969

    +3

    Apple '08 != Apple '86

    Sculley was a bozo. Not a tech visionary. Compare with today's group of Apple upper executives. Today's group is very different, being highly capable and skilled.

    This key point is absent from ALL analysis of Apple without Jobs.

  1. ezylstra

    Joined: Dec 1969

    +1

    Apple '08 != Apple '86

    Sculley was a bozo. Not a tech visionary. Compare with today's group of Apple upper executives. Today's group is very different, being highly capable and skilled.

    This key point is absent from ALL analyses of Apple without Jobs.

  1. Demonike

    Joined: Dec 1969

    +2

    Bad thing

    Chaining somebody to a major company like this is not wise marketing. As the above poster put it, should a rock hit Jobs on a Sunday, Apple stock would plummet instantaneously. Which is absurd, since, while Jobs is definitely an ego-maniac, he does not form the whole of Apple. Jobs is more like a mascot, and a wise one as a bonus. The talk about Apple and Jobs being two separate brands is spot on. Should Steve create a competing firm "Apple Too", then the market would follow him rather than stick with tried and proven products at Apple...

  1. jameshays

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    Armchair CEO

    I love all the armchair CEO's in this group... If you're so smart, where's your multi-billion dollar company!!

  1. TheSnarkmeister

    Joined: Dec 1969

    +2

    Personality Cult

    One of the justifications for the existence of state-chartered corporations is to allow for the (supposed) public benefit that accrues with in a stable marketplace where companies can survive past the involvements of their founders. When one man makes himself the sole face of a company, it defeats this purpose. Thus professional corporations do not have personalities running them, they are run by professionals who are replaceable as need requires. (Quick, name the head of Ford, Proctor & Gamble, or General Electric -- most couldn't because their leaders are professionals, not public personalities.) Professional corporations do not have a ringmaster directing a dog-and-pony show for every company announcement, but rather share knowledge through a variety of appropriate channels as it becomes available with the customers and partners.

    Young companies have always grown up around the dynamic energies of their founders, from Ford, to Edison, to Gates, and Jobs, but as a company matures, it needs to grow out of that. It is time for Apple to grow up. If Steve Jobs cares about Apple, he will start this process himself, by starting to share the stage, by establishing a broader public leadership structure for Apple, and by starting a process to hand things over to departments and the professionals that lead them.

  1. climacs

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    how soon they forget

    that Apple would be dead or acquired by some clueless company like HP if it weren't for Jobs' return.

    While Jobs' death or disability would undoubtedly raise many questions about Apple in the near-term, it's worth remembering how far he has taken the company in 10 years. I think that is an acceptable price to pay, though surely a succession plan post-Jobs is vital.

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