I just finished, for a second time, listening to the biography of Steve Jobs written by Walter Isaacson. It’s a wonderfully written book by a seasoned professional that tells the life story of Mr. Jobs who, in my opinion, will one day be categorized with the likes of Thomas Edison, Henry Ford and Leonardo Da Vinci as one of the greatest innovators of the 20th century. It’s a fantastic book and I highly recommend it whether you’re an Apple/Jobs fan or not.
The second time around with anything always brings new insights along with deeper understanding of the more intricate details of a story, or in this case, a life. I felt so inspired by the book and its subject matter I felt compelled to share my thoughts and insights in this month’s blog. While I’m no Mr. Isaacson, I have given considerable thought to crafting a message that is both entertaining and thought provoking for the reader. I hope you agree.
At the Apple’s Core!
From the very beginning Steve Jobs wanted to build great products, period. That single desire changed very little over his 36 years in the industry, however it did expand slightly over the decades. Steve’s eventual driving passion was to build an enduring company that made great products with the best people in the industry, all of whom were motivated by the same ideals. All else was secondary for Steve, including profits.
When you look at Apple today, the culture and innovative products were largely driven by Mr. Jobs and his meticulously selected team. An outstanding company, at its core, is comprised of its people and the God given talents they possess. Focus those talents on the right things and greatness happens, enduring companies are built and legacies are created. Apple and many other companies through time have all leveraged this natural law and reaped many harvests to become the very best in their industries.
Apples & Oranges
Everyone’s heard of this phrase in our industry, right? If I were to try and compare Apple Inc. with Space Age Electronics I’d expect to get this overused phrase blow-back right in my face before I even finished the comparison. It’s obvious that there is no clear comparison between these two companies, and probably never will be. Technology wise, business model wise, founding origin wise; they’re not even close.
But what is similar is the passion to build great products for our customers who value those unique solutions which serve a greater purpose and deliver a level of quality they are proud to put their name on. Those of you that identify with this concept have just moved from the general fruit aisle to the fruit consultation business where you’re helping individuals make healthy choices that improve their lives and vitalize their relationships. (Wow, where did that come from?)
Fruit Salad Extraordinaire
Apple is arguably the very best at making technology artful and highly functional for a vast number of users. Jobs and his teams are the masters of instinctively seeing the future and shaping their products to deliver, even create that reality. This may seem magical to many, but it’s not. It takes disciplined thought, fast decisions and massive action with the right people to get it done. Jobs and Apple were relentless in their pursuit to make it better than conceivably possible.
Apple gave the world technology solutions they didn’t know they needed and were rewarded handsomely for those innovations. At SAE, we help our customers figure out what they truly need and make it a reality for them. The hard truth is this: small to medium size businesses, even large corporations to some extent, don’t have the time, resources or experience to work on truly innovative products that are artful and highly functional. That’s why we get paid to figure out the details and deliver the solution that would otherwise die in someone’s head or get trashed on an old bar napkin.
Don’t take my word for it, go look for yourself. If you simply go to www.1sae.com you will find in the upper right corner links to all our Social Media sites (SoMed) where we have posted hundreds of original products we have created over the years. Many product solutions are not even shown there so you can imagine what is in our vault of golden solutions. Some of these ideas are so fantastic they become standard products for everyone to purchase.
Planting New Orchards
For those of you who know Space Age Electronics and have been around for a few decades buying our products, you know it’s not in our DNA to rest on our laurels or NOT try new things. We are innovators at our core, we like to experiment and do things others are afraid to do or think may be too risky for our industry. Our focus on the future (Code Cycle Adoption) helps us navigate our R&D towards the next industry accessory or solution that make systems easier to install, reduces risk and increases reliability. Coincidentally, as I write this blog we are at it again with new products for new industries that have never been seen or done before. (Check out our latest innovation at https://youtu.be/Hqk-kjOhQh4)
It’s time to think about how you can make a difference in your universe like Steve Jobs did in ours. It’s time to re-think the way you and your business are executing projects and how you can do it better and be proud to put your name on it. It’s time to try new things and ask for help from those who have the know-how and resources to help you. Don’t let another opportunity go by where you are left with the feeling that you could have done better and helped your company, your teammate or your customer (end user) get just what they wanted. Change up your diet, add some new healthful choices from Space Age Electronics that will improve your overall business vitality that employees and your customers will notice.