Early Apple CEO John Sculley Talks Publicly About Steve Jobs

In "one of the frankest CEO interviews you'll ever read," John Sculley talks publicly for the first time about Steve Jobs since he left Apple in 1993. After a long career as an executive at PepsiCo, Sculley was named co-CEO of Apple in 1983 with Jobs. He is best known for taking control of the company for nearly a decade after forcing Jobs' resignation. In the 90-minute conversation with Cult of Mac's Leander Kahney, Sculley also admits that it was a mistake for him to run the company when he knew little about computers.

I'm actually convinced that if Steve hadn't come back when he did -- if they had waited another six months -- Apple would have been history. It would have been gone, absolutely gone.

What did he do? He turned it right back to where it was -- as though he never left. He went all the way back.

So during my era, really everything we did was following his philosophy -- his design methodology.

Unfortunately, I wasn't as good at it as he was. Timing in life is everything. It just wasn't a time when you could build consumer products and he wasn't having any more luck at  NeXT than we were having at Apple -- and he was better at it than we were. The one thing he did do better: he built the better next-generation operating system, which eventually was merged into Apple's operating system.

Read the story about the interview or the full transcript at Cult of Mac.

Presented by

Nicholas Jackson is a former associate editor at The Atlantic.

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