Ive and Federighi on Collaboration at Apple

In the September 23-29, 2013 print edition of BusinessWeek, Sam Grobart writes about Apple in an article entitled “One Direction.” There were a couple of paragraphs on collaboration that jumped out to me:

While the partnership between the two men was made official last fall, Ive and Federighi—whoso desks are one-minute walk from one another—have been working together for years. “I don’t think we ever talked about our roles,” Ive says. “We talked about how can we most effectively extend the collaboration that always existed.”

That collaboration isn’t just there to make people feel good. It’s what’s needed as Apple ventures into a more challenging time. You cannot have internally warring factions when you’re also under attack from the outside. “Successful collaboration, in your mind, could be that your opinion is the most valuable and becomes the prevailing sort of direction,” Ive says. “That’s not collaborating.”

What makes that collaboration work is the two men’s shared focus on usability and simplicity.

So collaboration at Apple …
– is about ethos and intent (culture).
– can be extended and enhanced.
– is about making people feel good, PLUS essential to winning in the market.
– is not about one person being right all the time.
– requires a shared focus / vision / purpose.

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