Adam Lashinsky’s “Inside” story in the new issue of Fortune is packed with juicy revelations
After the simultaneous, and more-or-less disastrous, launch of the iPhone 3G and MobileMe in the summer of 2008 — the launch one Gizmodo reader dubbed “iPocalypse” — Steve Jobs summoned the MobileMe team to the Town Hall auditorium on Apple’s AAPL Cupertino campus for an obscenity-laden dressing down. “You’ve tarnished Apple’s reputation,” he told them. “You should hate each other for having let each other down.” Then he named a new executive on the spot to run the team.
That’s the lead anecdote of “Inside Apple,” Adam Lashinsky’s feature story in the new issue of Fortune — available to subscribers on the iPad. It’s an anecdote I’d never heard before, one of dozens of juicy details that Lashinsky — who wrote the definitive profile of Apple COO Tim Cook in 2008 — managed to extract from the secretive company through several months of old-fashioned shoe-leather reporting. Among the other revelations:
The sermon on the “Difference Between the Janitor and the Vice President” — a kind of managerial parable Jobs reportedly tells every exec who reaches the VP level
Apple’s radical approach to “P&L” (the financial statement by which individual managers in other companies are held responsible for profits and losses in their divisions) that turns the concept on its head
The effect Jobs’ “Top 100” off-site meetings have on the employees who are invited and those who are left behind
An elaborate org chart — centered around Jobs — that includes dozens of VPs whose names you’ll never get from Apple PR
The mission-critical task assigned to the “band of eggheads” that Jobs hired just before his second medical leave
You can read Lashinsky’s story — and the rest of the May 23 Fortune 500 issue — on the iPad for free if you are a Fortune subscriber. You can get the Fortune iPad app on iTunes here. If you’re not a print subscriber, click here. You can conduct the entire transaction online.
PAYWALL UPDATE: Time Inc. is also selling Adam’s piece on Amazon’s AMZN Kindle reader or via Kindle apps for PC, Mac, iOS, Blackberry and Android devices. Cost: $0.99. Click here.
BEHIND THE SCENES: Peter Kafka, who tweeted Saturday about how much trouble he was having downloading the iPad version, posted a piece on All Things Digital Monday about why Fortune put the Lashinsky piece behind a paywall.