I am currently about two thirds of the way through reading the mighty tome that is Walter Isaacson‘s biography of Steve Jobs. It ranks with Keith Richard’s biography as one of the most surprising and illuminating books I have read recently, with some interesting parallels between the subjects.
For those who haven’t got to it yet it is the story of the brilliant but flawed man who, more than most, has changed the way we live, communicate and entertain ourselves. He grabbed the opportunity presented by nurture, geography and social, cultural and technological change to build one of the most valuable brands in the world and stamp an enduring mark on history.
What has caught my attention in particular is his relentless passion and refusal to accept the less than brilliant. His desire to control very aspect from concept to end user experience has driven Apple to the heights it has achieved and created modern classics of consumer product design, quality and usability. From iMac to iPad and iPod to iPhone they are products and operating systems that just work.
He has proved the point that while price is important it is not the only arbiter of choice. Design, manufacture and market items that combine quality, desirability, usability and sheer chutzpah and price becomes a secondary consideration.
We may not all have Steve Job’s drive and genius but if we can just apply just a percentage of that passion and attention to detail in all the aspects of how we do business we can be sure that success will be ours.