When I think of Steve, the word "friend" comes first. Second, he is an incredible sounding board.
We recently decided to revamp our Disney stores, and his contribution, very early in the process, was to ask that we create a statement -- in other words, ask ourselves, "What do you want the stores to say to people when they walk in?" He didn't tell us what it would be, but he told us it was necessary that we have one.
Another piece of valuable advice he gave to me was to build a prototype of the new store on your property -- don't put it in a mall or on the street -- build it close enough so that you can visit it often, massage it, and learn from it. And when you're really ready, roll it out.
One remarkable thing about Steve is how he sets expectations on people. I worked for [the legendary ABC News chairman] Roone Arledge for 10 years. He demanded perfection, never accepted mediocrity.
Steve is the same. I see that in the way he manages his people. He sets expectations for quality, challenging the status quo -- and never accepts no for an answer.
-- Interview by Richard Siklos
NEXT: Ralph de la Vega