Negotiation Secrets of Steve Jobs
As most everyone knows, when Jobs first launched the iPhone in June 2007, he cut a deal with AT&T in which Apple would get a portion of AT&T’s revenue. According to the Harvard Business School case, Apple Inc. in 2010, “AT&T, the exclusive U.S. operator for the iPhone, agreed to an unprecedented revenue sharing agreement — Apple got about $10 a month from each iPhone customer’s bill – which gave Apple control over distribution, pricing, and branding.”
Man it would be nice to have $50 a month unlimited voice, data, and SMS:
Aggarwal was impressed by the way Jobs was willing to take a risk to realize his vision. “In one meeting in the conference room with Jobs, he was annoyed that AT&T was spending too much time worrying about the risks of the deal. So he said, ‘You know what we should do to stop them from complaining? We should write AT&T a check for $1 billion and if the deal doesn’t work out, they can keep the money. Let’s give them the $1 billion [Apple had $5 billion in cash at the time] and shut them the hell up,’” Aggarwal recounted.
Although Jobs did not actually offer AT&T the cash, his willingness to do so made an impression on Aggarwal.
Aggarwal also found Jobs unique in his outrageous demands. As he explained, “Jobs said, ‘$50 a month unlimited voice, data, and SMS plan — that’s our mission. We should ask for and go after something unreasonable that no one has been willing to accept.’ He would come up with these outrageous demands and fight for them — getting much more than he otherwise would have.”
Too bad Jobs failed at that.
There is a good lesson to learn from Steve's attitude: "He would come up with these outrageous demands and fight for them — getting much more than he otherwise would have.” Always aim high.