Just days after we are all saddened by the death of one of the greatest innovators of our time, startup guru Guy Kawasaki shares with us “What I Learned from Steve Jobs.” Kawasaki, the former Chief Evangelist for Apple speaks candidly about his time with Jobs and what they key takeaways were from his days at Apple. Kawasaki was one of the original Apple employees in charge of marketing the Macintosh in 1984. Like any entrepreneur would do, after learning from the best he “started listening to [his] own hype, and wanted to start a software company and really make big bucks.” Kawasaki also published the 1990 book “The Macintosh Way”.
One of the most interesting pieces of advice we can learn from Jobs is “Customers cannot tell you what you need”, citing that customers will only tell you they want “better, faster, cheaper.” Spoken like a true innovator who trusts his gut instinct…
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“Apple market research” is an oxymoron. The Apple focus group was the right hemisphere of Steve’s brain talking to the left one. If you ask customers what they want, they will tell you, “Better, faster, and cheaper”—that is, better sameness, not revolutionary change. They can only describe their desires in terms of what they are already using—around the time of the introduction of Macintosh, all people said they wanted was better, faster, and cheaper MS-DOS machines. The richest vein for tech startups is creating the product that you want to use—that’s what Steve and Woz did.