Monday, October 31, 2011

Innovators Business Ideas

Apple had 90 days working capital on hand when Steve Jobs took over — in other words, Apple was only three months away from bankruptcy

Steven Paul "Steve" Jobs (February 24, 1955 – October 5, 2011) was an American entrepreneur and inventor. He was co-founder, chairman, and former chief executive officer of Apple Inc. Jobs also previously served as chief executive of Pixar Animation Studios; he became a member of the board of directors of The Walt Disney Company in 2006, following the acquisition of Pixar by Disney. He was credited in Toy Story (1995) as an executive producer.

When describing his period of exile from Apple — when John Sculley took over — Steve Jobs described one fundamental root cause of Apple's problems. That was to let profitability outweigh passion: "My passion has been to build an enduring company where people were motivated to make great products. The products, not the profits, were the motivation.

Sculley flipped these priorities to where the goal was to make money. It's a subtle difference, but it ends up meaning everything."

There were thousands of layoffs. Scores of products were terminated. He knew the company had to make money to survive, but he transitioned the focus of Apple away from profits.

Adopted as a baby, Jobs recalled as a child once confronting his parents in tears about why his real parents had rejected him. His parents sat him down and said, "No, you don't understand. We specifically picked you out."

Profit was viewed as necessary, but not sufficient, to justify everything Apple did. That attitude resulted in a company that looks entirely different to almost any other modern Fortune 500 company. It's almost the opposite of what is taught in business school. Apple is just the opposite: It thinks of great products, then sells them. Prototypes and demos always come before spreadsheets."

While growing up Steve Jobs will go unbath for several days his managers at Atari made him work the night shift because his co-workers complained about his body odor, and  he drove a Mercedes with no license plate because he didn't want people tracking him.

Everything — the business, the people — are subservient to the mission: building great products. And rather than listening to, or asking their customers what they wanted; Apple would solve problems customers didn't know they had with products they didn't even realize they wanted. They can do it because Apple hasn't optimized its organization to maximize profit. Instead, it has made the creation of value for customers its priority.

A driven eccentric and sometimes cruel man who grew more reflective and fatalistic in his later years.

A Professor at Harvard Christensen's predictions on Apple: "There's just something different about those guys. They're freaks."

Jobs was profoundly influenced by the Innovator's Dilemma — took Apple from bankruptcy three months away, to one of the most valuable and influential companies in the world.

Steve Jobs was intially a Buddhist and he began to have Faith after developing Cancer