At the board meeting on April 11, Sculley officially reported that
he wanted to ask Jobs to step down as the head of the Macintosh division and focus instead on new product development.
Arthur Rock, the most crusty and independent of the board members, then spoke.
He was fed up with both of them:
with Sculley for not having the guts to take command over the past year,
and with Jobs for "acting like a petulant brat."
The board needed to get this dispute behind them,
and to do so it should meet privately with each of them.
Sculley left the room so that Jobs could present first.
Jobs insisted that Sculley was the problem because he had no understanding of computers.
Rock responded by berating Jobs.
In his growling voice,
he said that Jobs had been behaving foolishly for a year and had no right to be managing a division.
Even Jobs's strongest supporter, Phil Schlein,
tried to talk him into stepping aside gracefully to run a research lab for the company.
When it was Sculley's turn to meet privately with the board, he gave an ultimatum:
"You can back me, and then I take responsibility for running the company,
or we can do nothing, and you're going to have to find yourselves a new CEO."
If given the authority, he said, he would not move abruptly,
but would ease Jobs into the new role over the next few months.
The board unanimously sided with Sculley.
He was given the authority to remove Jobs whenever he felt the timing was right.
As Jobs waited outside the boardroom, knowing full well that he was losing,
he saw Del Yocam, a longtime colleague, and hugged him.
After the board made its decision, Sculley tried to be conciliatory.
Jobs asked that the transition occur slowly, over the next few months, and Sculley agreed.
Later that evening Sculley's executive assistant, Nanette Buckhout,
called Jobs to see how he was doing.
He was still in his office, shell-shocked.
Sculley had already left, and Jobs came over to talk to her.
Once again he began oscillating wildly in his attitude toward Sculley.
"Why did John do this to me?" he said. "He betrayed me."
Then he swung the other way.
Perhaps he should take some time away to work on restoring his relationship with Sculley, he said.
"John's friendship is more important than anything else,
and I think maybe that's what I should do, concentrate on our friendship."