The Last Man Who Had a ClueOctober 6, 2011
Thank you Steve Jobs for creating a company that doesn’t suck. A company, in the middle of one of the crappiest economies known to man, who didn’t lay off people. Instead, it grew to be the most valuable company on the planet, creating jobs and putting food on the table. While all the other rubes are laying off, this guy is selling you a $500 piece of hardware that you didn’t even know you needed.
This college drop-out, LSD tripping-hippy, managed to outsmart Harvard MBA’s who drove their companies into the shitter. Some guy out of Wharton can’t figure out how to make a car that doesn’t suck like every other vehicle the past 50 years, and this guy went, “DUDE! Let’s make an iPod.”
You know how much marketing research went into the first iPod – NONE! It’s just really cool.
The man opened a bunch of stores straight out of the The Jestson’s, and just sold items that are prettier than my wife’s lipstick case.
“No, no, no …. you can’t do that! That’s the dumbest thing I’ve ever heard.”
You know who else they thought was dumb? – Copernicus.
You know, you have employees like that in your company. Actually, you don’t. You laid them off. They were all the ones with ‘bad attitudes’ who you just couldn’t get to play along. But, hey, let’s all just do what the other guy does and if it doesn’t work out, we’ll just point the finger at someone. That’s called management.
Now all we’re left with is a bunch of automatons who are too scared to tell you you’re wrong because they don’t want to end up sorting underwear all day. And it really shows. I can’t get service from someone at a company that seems to give a shit. You laid off five percent of the staff, and dumped five percent more work on to the existing employees, for the same pay. So now an underpaid, pissed off employee answers the phone who is really committed to doing just enough not to get fired.
Meanwhile, 15 million competent employees who would kill the next person in line to get that job are just sitting around. But you have to create some “process” to find a new hire to fit the collective, asking silly questions like, “Do you live in Antarctica?”
It is possible to dig our way out of this mess. Apple is a case study in that. Unfortunately, the last man who knew what the hell he was doing just died.