Saturday, October 8, 2011

Steve Job - A passing of a Legend

A Tribute Artwork to Steve Job that has becomes Viral

This is a terrific article about Jobs. A long interview last year with Sculley:
He emphasizes how much Jobs was a DESIGNER. Design is what mattered to him. This one of several passages that really struck me:

"The thing that separated Steve Jobs from other people like Bill Gates — Bill was brilliant too — but Bill was never interested in great taste. He was always interested in being able to dominate a market. He would put out whatever he had to put out there to own that space. Steve would never do that. Steve believed in perfection. Steve was willing to take extraordinary chances in trying new product areas but it was always from the vantage point of being a designer."

The unusual mix of design talent with a personality that could "warp reality" around people he was wooing, and also be stubborn as hell is what made him the force he was.

It also helped that made a mountain of money early, so that he could keep control longer than most entrepreneurs.

I've read a lot of retrospectives on Jobs today. I think it's relevant to what WE want to do with our Sage-related business. Jobs and Gates will always be linked together, but I suspect that Jobs will be remembered for his industry influence long past Gates. And yet Gates built a far larger business. I suspect that Gates will ultimately be remembered, 100 years from now, much as Carnegie is remembered: for his impact on philanthropy.

From the Sculley interview:

"Steve’s point of reference was Sony at the time [early 80's]. He really wanted to be Sony. He didn’t want to be IBM. He didn’t want to be Microsoft. He wanted to be Sony.

... It was always an end-to-end system with Steve. He was not a designer but a great systems thinker. That is something you don’t see with other companies."

Which leads me to the strategy question I'm pondering now: what sort of firm would SmartBridge Partners be if we focused much, much more on the final user experience, the DESIGN experience? I am a "recovering engineer" and this is hard ...

Jerry Norman : CEO at SmartBridge Partners, A Sage Partner.
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