There’s not much more to write that hasn’t already been written. Today, I get to do what I do because he dared to “Think Different.”
His return to Apple saved it from oblivion. And then we got the world-changing products: Not just the Mac, which had redefined what a “personal computer” was in the ’80s, but the iPod, the iPhone, and the iPad.
And so more than ever, I find myself inspired. Steve’s untimely death reminds us we can never give up. He could have given up at any point in the seven years since his first cancer diagnosis, but he did not. The vast majority of Apple’s unprecedented resurgence took place while Steve Jobs stared death in the face. How many of us could have lasted this long at all, let alone accomplish all that he did along the way?
I am thankful for Steve’s life and what he accomplished. But I also remember that he was still just a man, like all of us. We continue by seeking to live with intention, by loving those around us, pursuing our dreams, trusting our gut, and remembering that life is fragile.
But I always thought…for him to die young, it seemed so strange because for other people of his magnitude like Henry Ford and Thomas Edison, you sort of feel like we wrung everything out of them. They were old when they died. But for Steve Jobs, you really got the sense like, ‘Ahhhh!!!! We’re not done with you yet.’ And it was this sense that, what are we supposed to do now? What’s next?’ It’s sort of like an alien that comes down and gives you this new technology and then kind of shows you how to use it and then takes off in a spaceship. And then your like, ‘Ahhhh!!!! What’s this green button?’ Strange. Unusual character and we won’t see the likes of him for quite some time.
But in the end, when I think about leadership, passion and attention to detail, I think back to the call I received from Steve Jobs on a Sunday morning in January. It was a lesson I’ll never forget. CEOs should care about details. Even shades of yellow. On a Sunday.
Just 14 years ago, Apple was on the verge of bankruptcy…[b]ut that was just the start of Apple’s return to glory, the greatest corporate comeback story of all time, led by Steve Jobs.
Cupertino council woman,
‘People are curious, how can this city residence benefit from this new campus?’
‘Well, we’d liked to stay in Cupertino and keep paying our taxes….if we can get out of taxes, we’d be glad to put up free Wi-Fi.’
– Steve Jobs, presenting to the Cupertino City Council (6/7/11)
This moving video was created by Apple employees for Steve Jobs’ 30th birthday on February 24, 1985. The five-minute movie contains a slew of images of Steve that we’ve never seen before – as a baby; as a toddler on his bike; with friends and colleagues – and is a fitting testament to the way in which Apple workers viewed their great leader.
Who wants a stylus?
Steve’s last keynote, last words,
‘So go at it, have a great week, and thank you very much for coming this morning.’