Yes!!! I am back already with a post (very happy about that). I just finished reading an article on Guy Kawasaki’s blog. It’s a post on the lessons he’d learned from Steve Jobs and I’d like to share the insight I gleaned from the 13 points he outlined.
1. Experts are clueless: His point on this is that people whom we label as experts (e.g. analysts, journalists, accountants etc) are, most of the time, only good at telling you what is wrong but are quite unable to tell you the right thing to do.
2. Customers cannot tell you what they need: If you ask customers what they wanted, they will say something like this “Better, Faster, Cheaper”. This however means better, faster or cheaper sameness. Customers usually talk to you in reference to what they already know (which in most cases is not revolutionary).
3. Jump to the next curve ball: Go beyond the ‘usual’. If you want to win big, develop something that goes beyond ‘sameness’.
4. The biggest challenge beget the best work: The bigger the challenge you need to overcome, the harder and more creative you word therefore leading you, most of the time at least, to your best work.
5. Design counts: Many people care about design and appreciate well designed products.
6. You can’t go wrong with graphics and big fonts: Steve Jobs has called the world’s best corporate storyteller among other accolades because of the graphics and large fonts he uses in his presentations. So I guess we should learn from him.
7. Changing you mind is a sign of intelligence: I have a friend who would often say “it’s only a foolish person who does not change his mind”. If you made a claim and realised it’s wrong, do feel free to change your mind.
8. “Value” is different from “price”: If you want to be a top company, don’t differentiate only on price. Make sure value is the key thing that differentiates you from your customers.
9. “A” players hire “A+” players: Talented people hire people who are more talented than they are to help run their company. “B” players however hire “C” players, “C” hire “D” players and on and on; so they can feel good about themselves.
10. Real CEO’s demo: As the CEO of the company, you should understand your product more than anyone else and be able to demo it to others whenever.
11. Real CEO’s ship: Don’t develop a product for too long. Even if the product is not perfect, get it to market and start working on the next iteration.
12. Marketing boils down to providing unique value:Think of a 2 x 2 matrix. The vertical axis measures how your product differs from the competition. The horizontal axis measures the value of your product. Bottom right: valuable but not unique—you’ll have to compete on price. Top left: unique but not valuable—you’ll own a market that doesn’t exist. Bottom left: not unique and not value—you’re a bozo. Top right: unique and valuable—this is where you make margin, money, and history. For example, the iPod was unique and valuable because it was the only way to legally, inexpensively, and easily download music from the six biggest record labels.
13. Some things need to be believed to be seen. You need to be able to convince others to see your vision, buy into and then tap their skills and talents to be able to achieve greatness.
So there you go, my take on Guy’s article. Now go be AWESOME.