Leadership

Apple CEO Tim Cook shares 2 key lessons for leaders

Tim Cook
Sally Shin | CNBC
Tim Cook

As CEO of Apple Tim Cook has been an outspoken leader on the fight for equal rights and privacy, among other topics.

Most recently, and in an exclusive interview with CNBC's Jim Cramer of "Mad Money," Cook discusses his new focus as CEO: to have Apple create jobs for U.S. workers.

Here are two main takeaways for leaders from Cook's interview:

1. Use your position to benefit others in need

Cook makes it clear in his recent interview that he's using his position to help American workers.

"You know, a lot of people ask me, 'Do you think it's a company's job to create jobs?' and my response is a company should have values because a company is a collection of people," he says. "And people should have values, so by extension, a company should."

Cook continues to discuss his philanthropic bent as a leader. "One of the things you do is give back. So how do you give back?" he asks, rhetorically. "We give back through our work in the environment, in running the company on renewable energy. We give back in job creation."

"People should have values, so by extension, a company should." -Tim Cook, CEO, Apple

"And so if you look at job creation in particular, we've now created two million jobs in America," he adds. "Two million."

But for Cook, that's not enough. In fact, he wants to use his post as CEO to make even more jobs available to U.S. workers.

"We ask ourselves, 'How can we increase it further? How can we create even more?'" he says. "We're not satisfied with just two million. And so you can bet we're going to be hiring thousands of employees in the future."

Overall, Apple says it's using $1 billion for a fund to create more advanced manufacturing jobs in the U.S.

2. Be humble

During his conversation with Cramer, Cook also talked about how lucky he feels to be in the top spot at Apple, a post he took in 2011 from Steve Jobs.

"I love it," he says. "You know, there's no bigger privilege in the world than to work at this company at this moment in time. And to be able to work with all the great people I get to work with every day."

Being humble is a key trait for successful leaders, according to Airbnb's CEO Brian Chesky. "Take a step back and have some humility," he tells CNBC.

"It was beyond my wildest imagination," says Cook about being named CEO, "and there's not a day that goes by that I don't thank God for it."