Steve Jobs on Innovation

I had coffee this morning with a woman who has spent her career building a strong roster of clients for whom she identifies their true need, and then leverages her vast and talented network to connect people with the skills to solve those clients’ problems. I was energized by our discussion, because we both recognized that the business world is changing into one that relies more heavily on having a trusted circle of experts who can help us see connections that we would not have come up with on our own, and bringing talented individuals from their networks to the table, to solve ever more complex problems.

Social media continues to give us ever greater tools to identify those skilled individuals who we want by our side, and quickly get their perspective on (and help doing) what we plan to do next. In keeping with this week’s focus on motivating innovation and remembering the change visionary that Steve Jobs was, I wanted to share this quote:

“… Apple is a very disciplined company, and we have great processes. But that’s not what it’s about. Process makes you more efficient.

“But innovation comes from people meeting up in the hallways or calling each other at 10:30 at night with a new idea, or because they realized something that shoots holes in how we’ve been thinking about a problem. It’s ad hoc meetings of six people called by someone who thinks he has figured out the coolest new thing ever and who wants to know what other people think of his idea.

“And it comes from saying no to 1,000 things to make sure we don’t get on the wrong track or try to do too much. We’re always thinking about new markets we could enter, but it’s only by saying no that you can concentrate on the things that are really important.” [BusinessWeek, Oct. 12, 2004]

About Michelle Smeby

Michelle Smeby is CEO of wHolistic Change, Inc. with more than 10 years of experience implementing enterprise solutions at Fortune 100 companies. Michelle specializes in helping corporations deliver transformational change.
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