Hard Times? Apple posts record profits

So times are hard and people aren’t buying stuff? Apple have announced that they made a net profit of $1.61bn (£1.15bn) and posted record revenue of $10.7bn for the last three months of 2008. (For the same quarter the previous year, Apple’s profit was $1.58bn and its revenue was $9.6bn.)

In this three months Apple sold:

Macs: 2,524,000, up 9%.
iPods: 22,727,000 iPods, up 3%.
iPhones: 4,363,000, up 88%

Does anyone need an iPod or Mac? Not really. But they certainly want them. How can we increase the value of our stuff so that our clients really want it?

Perhaps we can see clues by having a look at Apple’s philosophy as told by Chief Operating Officer Tim Cook, who is overseeing Apple’s day-to-day operations during Steve Jobs’ absence:

“(Apple has) over 35,000 employees that I would call “all wicked smart”. And that’s in all areas of the company, from engineering to marketing to operations and sales and all the rest … We believe that we’re on the face of the Earth to make great products, and that’s not changing. We’re constantly focusing on innovating. We believe in the simple, not the complex … and participate only in markets where we can make a significant contribution. We believe in saying no to thousands of projects so that we can really focus on the few that are truly important and meaningful to us. We believe in deep collaboration and cross-pollination of our groups, which allow us to innovate in a way that others cannot. And frankly, we don’t settle for anything less than excellence …and we have the self-honesty to admit when we’re wrong and the courage to change … those values are so embedded in this company that Apple will do extremely well.”

Just read that quote again and ask yourself if any of it could apply to your business. It should.

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