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Competitive Strategies: Apple and Microsoft Research Paper

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Updated: Aug 2nd, 2021

Introduction

Apple Inc. was initially referred to as Apple Computer, Inc. It is a global corporation from America and engages in personal computers, computer software, and consumer electronics.

Steve Jobs established the company in 1976. According to the Fortune Magazine, Apple was United States’ most admirable company in 2008. Beginning from 2008 to 2012, Apple was the world’s most admirable company. Microsoft deals with the sale of personal computers and software.

Differences between Corporate Culture in Apple and Microsoft

The key difference in the corporate culture practised at Microsoft and Apple is secrecy. Apple’s fans rely on the company’s rumour sites for speculations regarding the launch of novel products. Apple hardly displays its products before they are ready for shipping.

On the contrary, Microsoft provides sneak product previews long before the products are launched. This is partially as a result of the corporate culture at Microsoft. In addition, the company has a wide array of enterprise customers and vendors who require arranging software appraisal ideas.

Apple invests in an exceptionally hardnosed corporate culture. This is a mystery that all global business executives desire to comprehend (O’Regan, 2012). The culture is founded on the concept that employees with a self- drive deliver more as opposed to cases where there are managers at every department.

The organizational structure at the company was almost unpopular and purposed at allowing people working in the fields to make decisions. Apple is admired for its delightful but intricate technologies. However, it is worth noting that the company’s environment is termed as unforgiving and brutal.

In regard to this, there is a strict adherence to accountability, swift decisions, and perfect articulation of communication. Every meeting is guided by an action list and every employee knows their supervisor. The weekly meetings aim at promoting a responsible culture.

The MSDN (Microsoft Developer Network) offers technical references that can be used by developers. In addition, articles from the company’s magazines are also available. Individuals and companies are offered subscriptions by the MSDN. Expensive subscriptions allow access to beta software versions (Lee & Yu, 2004). In 2004, the company initiated a community site, which was meant for users and developers.

The site was referred to as Channel9 and it offered an internet debate and wiki. The On10.net site offers daily video casts in addition to other services. Helpful individuals can be selected by the company’s employees or peers for the MVP (Microsoft Most Valuable Professional) status. People in this group possess a unique social status and can receive awards and benefits.

At Microsoft, the phrase “eating our own dog food” refers to the policy of utilising beta versions and preleases when testing products in real circumstances. The company’s hiring process is exceptionally unique and imitated by other companies, which dub it as the “Microsoft interview.”

The company is marked as notorious for denying the H1B visas that permitted US companies to recruit particular foreign workers (Jones, 2010). Microsoft argues that employing foreign workers at lower salaries will result to unemployment among the US citizens.

Ways in which each unique culture ensures positive competition

In the case of Apple, a culturally responsible workplace ensures that employees enjoy their roles. In addition, every employee knows who should address their issues. As such, employees possess an exceptionally high level of self- drive. Consequently, this increases every employee’s output. This is a factor that promotes positive competition.

Employees at Apple value their company, offer diverse ideas on novel technologies and developments, and advise on how to curb competition. This ensures that the company produces unique products and uses unique marketing strategies, which enlarges the company’s market share (Flamholtz, 1995).

On the other hand, Microsoft hugely invests in the opinions and ideas from funs, customers, and employees. As stated earlier, the company has several newsgroups and online debate sites where various individuals can offer their opinions. Through this, the company gains innovative ideas and a wide knowledge base. Consequently, the company uses this feedback to better their products.

How each company would thrive if the present corporate culture was changed

At Apple, the employees are guided by the CEO’s authority. In this regard, it is worth noting that the two companies use different leadership styles. For instance, at Apple, the Head of Design can speak on behalf of the CEO. Design is an extremely vital priority at the company. On the contrary, Microsoft relies on negotiation. It is all about supporting individuals and companies who support their features.

In my view, irrespective of the excellent negotiation skills at Microsoft, there is need for a style of leadership where the leader has the overall say. This ensures some form of control (Want, 2006). It is worth pointing out that Microsoft possesses exceptionally brilliant individuals and is extremely successful.

Apple Company should retain their simplicity, specialization, and the culture of concentrating on a few accomplishments at a time. Apple should engage in restructuring strategies so as to be able to control its finances and operations, which will ensure its competitiveness.

References

Flamholtz, E. (1995). Managing organizational transitions: implications for corporate and human resource management. European Management Journal, 13(1), 39-51.

Jones, G. R. (2010). Organizational theory, design, and change. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall.

Lee, S. K. J., & Yu, K. (2004). Corporate culture and organizational performance. Journal of Managerial Psychology, 19(4), 340-359.

O’Regan, G. (2012). Technology Companies. London: Springer.

Want, J. (2006). Corporate culture: Illuminating the black hole. New York: St. Martin’s Press.

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