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Continued: AP Interview: JC Penney CEO tries to transform Penney, borrows from Apple's playbook

  • Article by: ANNE D'INNOCENZIO , Associated Press
  • Last update: January 30, 2012 - 2:27 PM

A. I wouldn't assume they like the pricing strategy. I think they're insulted by it.

Q. Who are you targeting?

A. We are going after all Americans. We would like to be the store for everyone.

Q. What are your plans to make the shopping experience more exciting?

A. We are going to make the store a place people love to come_ just to come. Because they can get support before they're ready to buy. They can get great support when they want to buy and they can come in after they buy. We'll transform the buying experience not unlike what we did at Apple.

Q. When will we start to see improvements?

A. You'll start to see the experience change month by month. Everyone thinks it's an overnight success but it never is. I was at Apple from 2000 to 2011, but it wasn't until 2004 that the iPod became an important part of people's lives. It wasn't until 2007 that Apple reinvented the phone. It wasn't until 2009 that Apple launched the iPad. But we look at it today and we feel Apple had always been beloved. It took time and this will take time as well.

Q. What ideals have you embraced from Steve Jobs?

A. The importance of doing everything you do to your very best. And that the journey is the reward. If you do things well one at a time, you end up in a really good place. Don't get ahead of yourself. Control the things you can.

Q. Other than Apple, which stores do you admire?

A. I admire lots of stores. Whole Foods is a great store. I just like their passion for food. It shows up in everything they do. It shows up in their packaging, their presentation and their employees. Starbucks. It truly has created a community. As I travel around the world, I just know that if I go to Starbucks I will have a great experience.

Q. You're dressed casually. Where do you shop?

A. I just dress to be comfortable. I shop at lots of stores. These are Levi 514s. I bought them at a Levi's store. I have a T-shirt. That's from Lacoste. I have a cashmere sweater. It came from Zegna. My socks are from Target. My shoes are from Tod's. We shop multiple places. But we do have a favorite store. That's what we're going to become.

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