Looking ahead for Apple. Looking out for all.
The goal is to make people’s lives better, and you don’t ignore anyone. You live up to that promise.
Question: Your career here started at the Apple Store? Answer: Yes, 15 years ago, in a temporary role. Then I was part-time, then full-time, then onto a new role in Cupertino, then to my current role with the Technology Development Group. Question: That last one sounds kind of top secret. Answer: I can’t tell you much, but I can tell you that we research and develop new technologies. And my role is to create resources — including courses and videos — that help our people learn and collaborate on those technologies.
Question: Apple has grown significantly since you started. What’s changed? Answer: My roles, more than anything. Everything else has just grown stronger, whether the principles behind the products or behind the company. Question: Which company principles? Answer: There’s a lot, but for instance, we’re speaking out even more, about the environment, privacy, diversity, justice, and other issues. And we don’t mince words. Question: Simple and clear is an Apple thing. Answer: Yeah, like on our Privacy page — the first words are “Privacy is a fundamental human right.” That’s not an ambiguous mouthful of loophole legalese. Or look at how Apple has spoken up in support of the DACA Dreamers. Question: The young people who are part of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program. Answer: Right. Our leadership called it a moral issue and talked about how the hundreds of Dreamers on our teams are vital to our success.
Doing the right thing rarely means doing the easy thing.
Question: Does this sense of responsibility affect people’s day-to-day work? Answer: Sure, it’s part of everything we do. For example, during my time in Apple Support, we created training materials for technicians working across Latin America, and we chose to do translations in regional Spanish. That helps people identify with the role and it’s just more welcoming. It may sound like a little thing, but it shows respect for our cultural differences.
Question: How does a team decide to do things like that? It’s got to make it more complicated. Answer: It can, but this kind of thinking is just baked into our process. It’s not an afterthought. Question: So there’s not a lot of resistance? Answer: Not on any team I’ve been on. I don’t think Apple people have discussions about whether we should do the right thing, just how.
To create human-centered products, we try to account for the complexity of humanity.
Question: So, more work, but a good day’s work. Answer: Yeah, and when you add up all those days across Apple, I think that as my six-year-old son grows up, he’ll have a smarter, safer experience because of decisions we’re making today. I love that. It fills me with optimism.
Question: Does thinking of your work in human terms make it easier to make the right decisions? Answer: It does for me. And here we see well beyond our own work. Question: What do you mean? Answer: For example, it’s been especially meaningful to me to see how Apple has supported immigrants from around the world. Question: Why is that? Answer: Back in 1985, I came here from Chile with my mom, by crossing the U.S. border. We were detained and separated for a couple of weeks while they examined our visas. So it was really hard in recent years to see families being separated on such a massive scale. For Apple to take a public stance against separating children from their parents meant a lot. And because Apple has had charitable gift matching for years, that meant my donation to an organization helping the families was doubled.