Tim Cook is Financial Times’ Person of the Year, TIME’s award goes to ‘Ebola Fighters’

Tim Cook biceps

The Financial Times newspaper on Thursday announced it’s picked Apple’s boss Tim Cook its Person of the Year. Although Apple’s chief executive faced criticism since taking the helm of Apple following Steve Jobs’ passing, he did manage to turn things round in 2014, the paper said.

Cook’s maniacal focus on Apple’s financial performance has managed to please investors, while new products such as the bigger iPhones and the Apple Watch took naysayers by surprise.

That he publicly came out as gay to become the first openly gay Fortune 500 CEO and took the time to made some smart hiring decisions didn’t hurt either, notes the article.

Citing “financial success” (AAPL rebounded and passed $700 billion in market value), “dazzling new technology” and Cook’s “brave exposition of his values” was enough to earn the Apple chief the coveted title of the paper’s Person of the Year.

Cook’s other moves that the paper factored in: the Apple Watch announcement, launch of the bigger iPhones with Apple Pay, promoting equality in the workplace by increasing hiring of women for what’s perceived as traditionally male roles (case in point: new retail chief Angela Ahrendts) and the $3 billion Beats buy.

Regarding Cook’s positively received essay on his sexuality, the paper called it a brave move which carried the risk of backfiring drastically:

“It was a rare glimpse into his closely guarded personal life that also put at risk Apple’s brand in less tolerant parts of the world,” authors Tim Bradshaw and Richard Waters wrote. But Cook was driven to “take a stand by his experiences growing up in Alabama, where he has talked of seeing discrimination that ‘literally would make me sick’”.

Tim Cook (One More Thing 001)

It sure wasn’t an easy ride for Cook.

Following Jobs’ passing in October of 2011, the chief executive immediately faced criticism as Apple’s stock tumbled and the company’s innovation engine was called into question.

Luckily, the new boss’s calm Southern demeanor helped weather the storm as he “held his nerve through attacks from activist investors and a loss of faith” among some who questioned whether Apple could succeed without its mercurial co-founder.

Other nominees for the paper’s Person of the Year include Russian president Vladimir Putin, the Ferguson protestors, the Ebola caregivers, Taylor Swift, Alibaba CEO Jack Ma, the National Football League commissioner Roger Goodell and acting president of the Iraqi Kurdish Region Masoud Barzani.

The whole article does an excellent job summarizing Cook’s other aspects of Cook’s leadership so give it a read (or save it for later) by clicking on the source link below.

Cook was also nominated for TIME’s Person of the Year award, but that award went to the Ebola Fighters.

[Financial Times]