Tim Cook has asked Apple staff to honor the late Steve Jobs on the fourth anniversary of his death, urging them to stop each other to “ask what he was really like”.
In an internal email to staff seen by The Telegraph, chief executive Cook paid tribute to his former leader and “dear friend”, stating that messages and drawings from Jobs’ children were still displayed on Jobs’ office whiteboard at Apple’s Californian headquarters.
“Steve was a brilliant person, and his priorities were very simple,” he wrote. “He loved his family above all, he loved Apple, and he loved the people with whom he worked so closely and achieved so much.
Here’s his letter to staff in full:
Today marks four years since Steve passed away. On that day, the world lost a visionary. We at Apple lost a leader, a mentor, and many of us lost a dear friend.
Steve was a brilliant person, and his priorities were very simple. He loved his family above all, he loved Apple, and he loved the people with whom he worked so closely and achieved so much.
Each year since his passing, I have reminded everyone in the Apple community that we share the privilege and responsibility of continuing the work Steve loved so much.
What is his legacy? I see it all around us: An incredible team that embodies his spirit of innovation and creativity. The greatest products on earth, beloved by customers and empowering hundreds of millions of people around the world. Soaring achievements in technology and architecture. Experiences of surprise and delight. A company that only he could have built. A company with an intense determination to change the world for the better.
And, of course, the joy he brought his loved ones.
He told me several times in his final years that he hoped to live long enough to see some of the milestones in his children’s lives. I was in his office over the summer with Laurene and their youngest daughter. Messages and drawings from his kids to their father are still there on Steve’s whiteboard.
If you never knew Steve, you probably work with someone who did or who was here when he led Apple. Please stop one of us today and ask what he was really like. Several of us have posted our personal remembrances on AppleWeb, and I encourage you to read them.
Thank you for honoring Steve by continuing the work he started, and for remembering both who he was and what he stood for.
Jobs was born on February 24 1955 and co-founded Apple with Steve Wozniak in 1976, and is widely recognised as one of the world’s most innovative technological thinkers and cult leadership figures, with an unwavering commitment to perfectionism. Under Jobs’ leadership, Apple’skeynote product and software presentations became renowned for their sense of showmanship, where Jobs often used his signature phrase “One more thing…” before revealing something memorable.
He died of complications related to pancreatic cancer aged 56 on October 5 2011, prompting worldwide vigils outside Apple stores and an outpouring of grief from fans and fellow technology figureheads alike.