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Iger Compares Himself to Steve Jobs in Interview

Disney’s Returning CEO has made TIME Magazine’s list of the Top 100 Most Influential People of 2023 and shared some reflections on his victory lap.

Posted on the cover of TIME once again, Bob Iger talked through what seems to be a heroic return to The Walt Disney Company, from rescuing the reigns from the now-ousted CEO Bob Chapek to the navigational expertise that supposedly landed Disney World the victor in the fight with Florida Governor Ron DeSantis over control over the Reedy Creek Improvement District.

His return was sudden and very unique, but it turns out that Iger equates his return to that of Apple Founder Steve Jobs.

Bob Iger and Steve Jobs

Credit: CNBC

Related: Bob Iger Says He Would be “Glad” to Meet With Ron DeSantis

When TIME asked him, “Is there anybody to whom you’re looking who’s done a similar thing,” Iger said:

The person that I think most of, that I was fortunate enough to have observed very closely, is Steve Jobs. He was brought back to a company that he had founded—very different circumstances. But speaking with him when I did, and reflecting on what his experiences were—I’ve taken a lot from that. One is when you are brought back, and you agree to come back, you have to do so with unbelievable enthusiasm, and not an ounce of hesitation. And then you have to know very quickly what it is you’re expected to accomplish and what it is you can accomplish. And then go at it with incredible resolve, incredible zeal, and incredible energy.

It is well-known that Iger and Jobs retained a strong professional and personal relationship through the end of Jobs’ life, and it has been argued that the friendship was a key factor in Iger’s ability to acquire Pixar Animation Studios.

Iger also reiterated that his decision to come back was influenced by his wife, recapping the night he got the fateful call from the Board of Directors after only being officially gone for eleven months. Before picking up the phone, he asked her what if they were going to ask him back, to which she simply said, “Yes.” It was after that that a surprised Bob Iger said yes to the Board’s request without any further hesitation.

Disney CEO Bob Iger

Disney CEO Bob Iger / Credit: Disney

Determined to cut billions in current costs, increase investments in the Theme Parks, and return power and accountability back into the hands of its creative storytellers, Iger will remain in charge of The Walt Disney Company for a maximum of two full years while proper work is done to ensure the right successor is chosen.

About T.K. Bosacki

Born and raised in Tampa, Florida, TK Bosacki is a professional writer, amateur adventurer, and lifelong Disney Fanatic. His Disney Park days include Space Mountain, Tower of Terror, Kilimanjaro Safaris, and Nomad Lounge. He believes in starting at the Canada pavilion (IYKYK), and the Monorail is superior to all Ferry Boats.

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