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Insider Today: Meta's manager squeeze

Matt Turner   

Insider Today: Meta's manager squeeze
  • This post originally appeared in the Insider Today newsletter.

Welcome back to our Sunday edition. Happy Father's Day to those celebrating.

There are YouTubers, and then there's MrBeast. While many aspire to make a little money from the platform, Jimmy Donaldson, aka MrBeast, makes a lot: Court documents reveal he expects to make $700 million in revenue this year.

On the agenda today:

But first: Why Apple might have the best hand in AI.

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This week's dispatch

Apple's intelligence

Another week, another AI-focused tech event. First there was OpenAI's spring update, then Google I/O, and then Microsoft Build. Last week, Apple joined the fray.

The tech giant's WWDC event didn't disappoint. CEO Tim Cook unveiled Apple Intelligence, a generative AI system partly powered by ChatGPT (for now). Wall Street cheered, making Apple the most valuable US company for a period.

Some of the smartest minds in tech applauded Apple's strategy. Why?

For one, Apple is applying artificial intelligence to a narrower set of quotidian tasks. As Katie Notopoulos noted, it appears to be a kinder, gentler AI. (On the other hand, a whole bunch of startups have reason to be fearful.)

Assuming Apple Intelligence works as intended, there will be even more reason to switch to or stay with Apple. It could also drive hardware upgrades and push revenue per user higher.

It also emerged that Apple is not paying OpenAI for the ChatGPT integration. Apple gets the benefits for its users while OpenAI foots the bill for the computing costs. Apple also stressed the door is still open to working with Google, giving it leverage to play OpenAI and Google off against each other. It's a power move that demonstrates Apple's incredible reach.

Add it all together, and, as Linette Lopez writes, Apple may be the one Big Tech company getting AI right.

Abercrombie has returned

In a time where fashion fads are faster than ever and many brands are struggling, Abercrombie & Fitch has executed a remarkable turnaround.

The clothing brand, once known for its dark, cologne-drenched stores and attractive employees, languished for a decade. But it's recently begun wooing millennial and Gen Z shoppers — and Wall Street is loving it, too.

How Abercrombie rose from the dead.

Meta VPs on the chopping block

Mark Zuckerberg's efficiency strategy is hitting Meta's upper ranks. The company is looking to trim the number of VPs from over 300 to about 250, three people told BI.

That means executives aren't safe from high performance standards and intense head-to-head evaluations. Mid-year performance reviews and "stack ranking" are just a few of the hurdles facing VPs.

The effects of Zuck's "permanent" efficiency.

A luxury developer's big challenges

Michael Shvo made a name for himself first as a broker, then as a developer of glitzy projects in New York City.

Shvo has long had a Midas touch. Over the past few years he's snapped up roughly $3 billion of US property with the help of German investors. But a soft real estate market and a trail of angry business partners and customers are threatening to thwart his big plans.

The cracks in Shvo's empire are starting to show.

Your manager is not your therapist

In a 2023 survey, nearly half of Gen Zers said they're fine talking about mental health at the office. Managers have said their young employees have no qualms about openly discussing it.

There's just one problem: A workplace overly focused on mental health isn't always a recipe for better mental-health outcomes. In fact, some researchers think talking about your struggles too much can actually make them worse.

What Gen Z gets wrong about the workplace.

This week's quote:

"Get in asap, we're going to Pluto."

A Redditor's post to r/WallStreetBets in 2020, as chronicled by a new book on the GameStop frenzy.

More of this week's top reads: