By Jack Linshi
March 26, 2015

Apple CEO Tim Cook says his journey to success hasn’t been an easy one.

In an exclusive interview with Fortune, Cook recounts how he dealt with the negative comments after he succeeded the legendary Steve Jobs in 2011. Though Cook eventually proved skeptics wrong — just check out iPhone 6 sales and Apple’s record-breaking $700 billion valuation last month — it wasn’t a smooth ride, including a public meltdown of the buggy Apple Maps app in 2012.

But as Tim Cook told Fortune, there’s no solution other than to ignore the haters — and then get your act together:

Cook also described just how intimidating it was at first to be Jobs’ successor:

Cook was named No. 1 on Fortune‘s “World’s Greatest Leaders” Thursday. Read the rest of Fortune’s profile of Tim Cook here.

 

Contact us at editors@time.com.

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