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 How does Tim Cook hire?

Tim Cook is an American business leader who took over as chief executive officer (CEO) of ‘Apple Inc.’ in 2011 when Steve Jobs retired. Even before inheriting the position of CEO formally, he served as acting CEO during Jobs’ lengthy medical vacation in the months before the former ‘Apple’ CEO’s death. Tim Cook has been essential in the company’s success since he joined as senior vice president (SVP) of Worldwide Operations in 1998. Indeed, ‘Apple’ was through a difficult period when Cook agreed to join the firm, and his influence in reviving the corporation was enormous. Cook is a self-made guy born into a middle-class family in a small town. He was an excellent student in school and continued to study industrial engineering at Alabama’s ‘Auburn University before earning his MBA from Duke University’s ‘Fuqua School of Business.’ He began his career in computer technology by working for IBM. He later worked for ‘Compaq.’ However, his tenure at ‘Compaq’ was brief, as he moved to join the then-struggling ‘Apple.’ Within a few years of coming, he transformed the company’s fortunes. Coming to his managerial style, he is a great leader and loves hiring people who desire to do things differently. Grit and curiosity are two of the main qualities that Cook looks for while hiring employees.
Next, we will be discussing all the qualities that Tim Cook looks for while hiring people.

What does Tim Cook look for in job candidates?

As per Cook, Apple looks for the following in job candidates:


The following is an analysis of Cook’s answer and the implications for recruiting managers at all organizations. First, choose if you are content with the way things are or whether you have a restless mind that yearns to influence the world around you. If you notice opportunities for improvement and have the guts to act, you possess this trait. If a system can be improved, a procedure altered, or a job opportunity presents itself, resist the temptation to settle or close. Cook exemplifies this nimble thinking. When he accepted the role at Apple, he said that he did so because “I examined the issues Apple faced” and determined “I can contribute here.” He was tasked with overhauling Apple’s production and distribution, which he accomplished.


The second feature of those who refuse to accept the status quo is taking calculated risks. You must be ready to abandon the safety net of creating what can be. You must be willing to go against common ideas and practices. And you must be prepared to take calculated risks in charting the trajectory of your career. Cook’s commitment to resolving Apple’s issues included a significant career risk for him. When Steve Jobs offered him a job as senior vice president of Apple’s global operations in 1998, the company was in freefall. Microsoft had committed $150,000 million a year before to keep Apple viable.


Thirdly, you’ll need trust in an unexplored future if you’re going to challenge the existing quo. When asked how he became Apple’s CEO during a Q+A session with a sixth-grader, Cook answered that he had no clue what the future held. “I never saw myself as Apple’s CEO. I never imagined that was feasible. Steve gave me the call of a lifetime in early 1998. However, I have always believed in what President Lincoln once said: ‘I will prepare, and my opportunity will present itself.'” “If you study diligently,” he said. Carry out an excellent job. And have trust that these things will add together to form a path that will take you on the most fantastic adventure.”


Finally, refusing to accept the current quo requires bravery. Cook said that he went with his intuition while accepting Steve’s offer. Go for it if you believe you can contribute much more to another function, organization, or profession. Take action if you feel you can make a difference at the company for which you work. Be courageous, speak out, and transform issues into opportunities. Avoid burying your ideas because others are unprepared for them or you are frightened of standing out.“We [at Apple] search for individuals who want to improve the world and are willing to put everything they have into it,” Cook said. Take a look around, and you’ll see several items that may benefit from modification. Take action to bring about these improvements. And when you’re being interviewed for a job and asked, “Tell me about an issue you solved,” you’ll be prepared with an excellent response.

What It’s Like to Work for Tim Cook?

In a nutshell, Cook is a workaholic who is obsessed with minutiae. He is thrifty and generous. Outside of Apple, he doesn’t have much of a social life. Cook is considered to be considerably more methodical and concerned with finance and social good. Cook’s democratic leadership style focuses on establishing a great relationship with the company’s employees, making them feel appreciated and driven.

The following are the five most important aspects of working with Cook:

  • Tim is intimately familiar with every aspect of their operation. And you should be well-versed in the specifics of your role in his enterprise.
  • Your work is your life. Your job is your way of life. Work-life balance does not exist.
  • There is no time for small talk; only focused communication in small bite-sized chunks is allowed.
  • Charms are used on bracelets.
  • You become a job hopper by advancing your career through job moves (read: untrustworthy). Endurance is king

Cook also ensures that employees’ complaints are heard and that systems are in place to ensure that the company addresses their well-being. Although Apple under Cook has a “more casual workplace” than Apple under Jobs, employees say Cook is just as “demanding and detail-oriented.”

How does Apple motivate its employees?

As we all know, benefits packages vary according to the firm’s role, location, and length of service. Apple follows the same model, but it also allows workers and families freedom. Among the incentives offered by Apple are the following:

  • Health and life insurance.
  • Insurance for long-term care.
  • Stock purchase scheme for employees.
  • Seminars on financial education.
  • Accounts for flexible expenditure.
  • Coverage for both short- and long-term incapacity.
  • Financial support for tuition.
  • Paid holidays and vacations.
  • Fitness facility onsite.
  • Computer Software.
  • Contributions to a 401(k) plan from the employer are matched.

Apple also rewards its workers with discounts on items, which is advantageous for most. Apple limits users to using this incentive once every three years, but it might be really useful when buying Macs or iPods. Employees in managerial or corporate positions can obtain a complimentary iPod shuffle or iPhone. Many workers at Apple are driven only by the desire to see the results of their efforts on a specific product. It may be very motivating for employees to learn more and perform better. Additionally, it benefits the corporation since providing merchandise is less expensive than providing a raise. In recent years, Apple has increased vacation days for staff due to good sales, which adds to the management’s motivating benefits. While few employees expressed dissatisfaction with their pay, many Apple employees lauded the advantages they received — even if they worked part-time. Apple now gives 401k and health benefits to employees who work 20 or more hours each week. While they are provided these benefits, many workers report that these plans are more expensive than those supplied to full-time employees. Except for senior roles, most employees are accessible full-time or part-time. Apple hires many seasonal workers, particularly during the back-to-school period and the Christmas holidays beginning after Thanksgiving.

How does Apple reward its employees?

Apple adheres to the reinforcement theory of motivation since it is concerned with the external environment and its implications. The organization primarily employs the positive reinforcement method, which improves or increases the frequency of the desired action by associating it with a pleasurable result. At Apple, examples of positive reinforcement include the awards mentioned above offered by Jobs (opening champagne, vacations, company parties). Because of the benefits available, all workers are encouraged to produce their best job to meet objectives. Apple also utilizes an incentive pay structure to encourage staff. It includes bonus pay, which compensates employees for meeting certain objectives or goals within a specified period. Additionally, as indicated before, they offer an employee stock ownership plan. The performance incentive and the ownership stake in one’s work are inextricably intertwined. Employees who own stock in the firm are self-motivated to work more and perform better to increase the company’s market value. Apple Inc. makes a concerted effort to balance financial and non-financial motivations. Although it is sometimes said that Apple employs monetary terms more for the employee’s benefit, primarily because the employee may then spend it any way he pleases. Apple employs non-monetary incentives to keep its staff motivated regularly but favors cash incentives. It might be in the form of wages/salaries, bonuses (executives earn between 3% and 5% of their basic pay), paid leave, the ability to purchase stocks at a discount, or alternative insurance plans.

Apple Employee Benefits?

Apple Employee Benefits and Perks That Help Retain Top Talent

1. Health and wellness
Apple employees enjoy excellent health insurance, with both dental and vision coverage. An onsite wellness facility at Apple’s California headquarters provides staff access to various medical providers, including physicians, chiropractors, and mental health practitioners.

Additionally, Apple employees get the following health benefits:

  • Life, accidental, and dismemberment insurance
  • Insurance against disability
  • Insurance against occupational accidents
  • Health and medical benefits for retirees

2. Vacation and Layoff
Apple is a proponent of a good work-life balance. For recruits, paid time off (PTO) for vacation and sick days is 15 and 20 days per year. It increases to between 20 and 30 vacations and leaves days each year for more senior personnel.

3. Parental Leave
Apple’s maternity leave policy is both unusual and generous. New moms get four weeks of paid leave before giving birth and fourteen weeks of paid leave after delivery. Additionally, an extra six weeks of unpaid leave is optional. Additionally, fathers and non-biological parents are eligible for six weeks of paid leave.

4. Commuting
Commuting is the misery of most workers’ everyday lives at work. As such, Apple sweetens the deal for its employees by providing a complimentary, exclusive shuttle service for staff residing in Cupertino, California, the location of Apple’s headquarters.
Additionally, the corporation pays a $100 stipend to workers to cover bus and other transportation expenses.

5. Gym Credit
It is well-accepted that physical fitness significantly impacts mental health and productivity. That is why Apple provides its workers with a $300 monthly gym credit for their physical health and fitness.

6. Stock Purchase Program
Personal investment in a business has been shown to increase an employee’s motivation to work harder for the company’s success. Apple offers a business stock purchase scheme via which workers may acquire discounted shares.

7. Self-improvement And Tuition
Apple operates its own ‘university,’ an on-campus training facility dedicated to educating staff about its culture, values, and global position. Employees can improve their general business skills through online courses and seminars on personal finance. Additionally, Apple would pay workers tuition fees up to $5,250.

8. Retirement
Apple does not abandon its workers just because they retire. While employed by the organization, workers are eligible for a 50% match on their 401(k) contributions up to 6% of their total compensation.

9. Some Additional Fun Stuff
To keep things interesting and new, Apple offers several wonderful additional employee bonuses that keep employees engaged and motivated:

10. Discounts on Products
Employees receive substantial discounts on Apple products, which keeps them connected and current.

11. Meals on the Cheap
Apple’s onsite Cafe Mac serves nutritious home-cooked meals at discounted prices. Additionally, fresh apples are usually available for free snacking!

12. The Renowned Beer Bash
A monthly event for Apple workers, the beer bash provides an opportunity to unwind and relax with complimentary beers, food, and, often, celebrity appearances. These gatherings have reportedly included Demi Lovato, Stevie Wonder, and OneRepublic performances.

A look at Apple Inc.’s organizational culture:

The following three critical characteristics characterize Apple’s organizational culture:
1. Originality and inventiveness.
Apple’s business strategy is based on product distinctiveness, emphasizing product design and functionality. Effective execution of this approach involves a high degree of creativity and innovation in personnel at all levels.
As a result, the organization strives to create a relevant work atmosphere to inspire its staff to be more creative and inventive. To demonstrate this notion, the creative design of Apple Campus, casual dress rules, and imaginatively created workspaces might be referenced.

2. Ability to work under duress.
Operating under pressure is a necessary talent for all Apple workers. Most projects have rigorous and demanding deadlines, and working long hours is a workplace practice. Tim Cook, CEO of Apple, is a role model for his commitment to the firm and willingness to work long hours. He is well-known for emailing staff around 4:30 a.m. Additionally, Sunday is a work night for many managers at Apple due to the next executive meeting.

3. Extreme secrecy.
Apple’s corporate culture is characterized by a high degree of secrecy. As previously said, “Apple engineers, even senior engineers, have no clue what the final design of an Apple product will look like until it is introduced.” The software developers have no notion of what the hardware is like, and the hardware engineers have no concept of what the software is.”
At Apple, workers sign project-specific non-disclosure agreements, and their credentials may access certain doors but not others on corporate property. While these tactics help significantly to Apple’s bottom line, Apple’s organizational culture of extreme secrecy has drawbacks as well. Specifically, excessive secrecy generates information silos, restricts cross-departmental knowledge exchange, and creates a tight delineation of roles that might constrain employee innovation.

4. Make a point of promoting diversity and inclusiveness. Apple makes a concerted effort to include diversity and inclusion as a pillar of its organizational culture. The international technology corporation employs a vice president of diversity and inclusion whose major responsibility is to guarantee diversity at all workforce levels.


Working at Apple is not for the faint of heart. Apple has provided its workers with all amenities and a picture-perfect lifestyle. However, there is still considerable pressure to meet the company’s objectives and pave the route to success. Whether you are running a small organization or a large MNC, one wrong hiring can cost too much to companies. We hope the above discussion will help you in framing your hiring process at your organization.  There is so much to learn from Tim Cook and his exceptional hiring strategies and leadership style.

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