What you need to know
- Tim Cook and the executive team held a company-wide meeting today.
- They discussed the impact of COVID-19 and the company's plans moving forward.
- Cook remains optimistic about Apple's future despite the short term impact.
Today, Apple CEO Tim Cook and the executive team of the company hosted a virtual company-wide meeting where they discussed the impact of the coronavirus pandemic as well as the company's plan moving forward.
As reported by Bloomberg, Cook remained optimistic about the future of the company, saying that some of Apple's greatest moments came after times of extreme hardship.
"He said when he first joined Apple in 1998, the company responded to financial challenges with the release of the original iMac. He noted that Apple rolled out the first iPad in 2010, right after the Great Recession, and said that Apple's plan is to come out of the Covid-19 pandemic in a similar fashion."
Apple is planning on potentially reopening some of its stores in the United States as soon as May. Deirdre O'Brien, the company's Vice President of Retail and People, said that employees in certain situations would have flexibility in returning to work.
"Apple's head of human resources and retail, Deirdre O'Brien, said the company is tweaking its vacation policy through the rest of the year to reimburse employees for unused days. She also said there would be flexibility for returning to work for employees in unique situations."
While the company does not know for sure when employees will be returning to work, Cook said that temperature checks, social distancing, and other measures may be put into place to ensure employee and customer safety.
Chief Operating Officer Jeff Williams said that Apple's work on health products is more important than ever and that the company's development in the area is focused on more than just the Apple Watch.
"During the meeting, Chief Operating Officer Jeff Williams said that the crisis has elevated the importance of Apple's work on health products, including the Apple Watch, and said the company's development work in the space isn't "limited to the wrist." He also said the pandemic is pushing countries to more quickly help Apple rollout the Apple Watch's electrocardiogram feature."
Tim Cook says that the company will continue to focus on the long term and that if they stay true to who they are, they should be nothing but optimistic towards the future.
"If we stay focused on doing what we do best, if we keep investing, if we manage the business wisely and make decisions collaboratively, if we take care of our teams, if our teams take care of their work, I don't see any reason to be anything but optimistic."