Today we lost a luminary. Steve Jobs died this afternoon, leaving a hole in the beating heart of Silicon Valley, and a virtually unparalleled legacy in high-tech history.
Steve will be remembered for many things. What I will remember him for is perhaps something...different. He didn't design all these lauded products we covet. He didn't invent all the great technology Apple is known for. What he did do, however, is transform Apple into a product-based company and instill his philosophy of quality and simplicity in the teams that he assembled.
Apple is a great company because they have great internal processes for product development, they exhibit outstanding execution with regard to production and delivery, and they have one of the best marketing teams in the world. Steve Jobs didn't architect or design all of these components, but he recognized the business value of them, hired the right people to get the job done, and invested the required time and effort to get things done right.
Steve Jobs exercised professional discipline. Other business leaders would do well to note that, and not chalk up Apple's success to fortunate sparks of creative genius. Doing so only shows that they don't understand Steve Jobs, his role, or the business principles that make Apple great.
Thank you Steve.