Steve Jobs originally envisioned Apple Stores as targeting creative professionals

2

Comments

  • jungmarkjungmark Posts: 6,027member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by umrk_lab View Post


    Yes, whatever the cost .. (start all over again ...). Impossible in a "normal" company ...



    Exactly. A "normal" company would commission focus groups and lots of surveys and still get it all wrong.
  • sunilramansunilraman Posts: 8,133member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post


    As great as Jobs vision was he had a lot of flawed ideas. His original name for the iMac sticks out. At least he knew when a better idea was being presented. I'd say that not not only makes him intelligent, but wise.



    Not many people realise it but Jobs was able to corral a massive number of people, not just by charisma or emotionally bashing people over the head.



    In the end he was able to build a company that "builds itself", as he always wanted.



    Check out this video about Next, and while Steve definitely seems characteristically annoyed in some scenes, he does cop a lot of stuff from his team. And this was when he was in his 30's. By the time he came back to Apple, he was further down the track in both leading and facilitating. Yeah, a tough guy to work with, but Steve certainly did some things right in terms of leading people. Walt Mossberg chuckled when Steve said "the best ideas win" and "we have great arguments"... But I think some of that is definitely true:



    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sOlqqriBvUM
  • sunilramansunilraman Posts: 8,133member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Rogifan View Post


    what I got from Isaacson's book was if you challenged Steve hard and you were right he'd eventually come round to your way of thinking. Especially is you were someone who had earned his respect. And no doubt Steve had highi regard for Ron Johnson.



    Indeed. From the book, it looked like Steve was a kind of guy that you either got along with or hated. If you got along with him and he respected you, then things happen. Otherwise, no dice.
  • xgmanxgman Posts: 142member
    Well his original idea sure has strayed away from creative professionals.
  • sportyguy209sportyguy209 Posts: 33member
    Is no one going to comment on Johnson's new JC Penny campaign? Seriously, while the Apple Stores are genius, I don't see his new JC Penny campaign making any difference in that market. With Apple you have unique, amazing products. With JC Penny you have clothes you can get anywhere. I'm amazed he bailed out of Apple to go work for JC Penny.
  • mj1970mj1970 Posts: 9,002member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by sportyguy209 View Post


    Is no one going to comment on Johnson's new JC Penny campaign? Seriously, while the Apple Stores are genius, I don't see his new JC Penny campaign making any difference in that market.



    Do you know anything about that market? Granted, many of us wouldn't imagine leaving Apple for JCPenney, and many of us pay very close attention to Apple and its markets (though probably don't even know those as well as Apple does)...I don't really know much of anything about the retail department store market. I have no idea what would work or not. I bet Ron Johnson does though. After all he's worked in it for a very long time.
  • markbyrnmarkbyrn Posts: 560member
    The brilliance of Jobs was attracting and motivating brilliant people who made Apple what is today. However, it doesn't follow that Ron Johnson will be turn JC Penny into an Apple success story. Apple sells a few handfuls of unique and innovative technology products while JC Penny is a venerable department store chalk full of stuff and you buy the same stuff at other department stores or online. I'm sure he'll able to streamline, organize and make a more appealing presentation but it's kind of like putting lipstick on a very old pig - perhaps he'll keep the brand chain alive longer but nobody will much care.
  • meh 2meh 2 Posts: 149member
    Originally Posted by Mike Fix

    Quote:

    It's truly unfortunate Apple now hates creative professionals these days, the people that stayed with the company when it was on the brink. The people that repeatedly showcase Apple products in movies and television, the people that show off their products on stage...





    Originally quoted by myapplelove

    Quote:

    What a load of horse manure ...



    It strikes me that there may a middle position to the two so admirably put forth here.



    With respect to Macky the Macky contention that Apple means no onus to creative professionals (with respect to their present resolve to mass-produce solutions for the planet), I admire his ironic twist of phrase ?Apple can't live in the past like you'd want, there's no future there.? However ? in fairness ? I'm not sure that Mike Fix nor myapplelove actually pines for Apple to resume their prior role from the past. However, the essence of the post, that ?Apple can't live in the past, there's no future there? is so succinct that it is unabashedly brilliant for its brevity (I think I'll steal it for my own future use).



    On the other hand, unless I seriously misinterpret the thrust of their assertions ? (to attempt my own somewhat contrite turn of phrase) Macky the Mack and applelove are also pointing out a parallel truth embedded in what Macky the Mack said ? namely, that Apple's present is, in large part, due to their past.



    Put another way, it is precisely Apple's legacy ? its heritage ? as a technological leader catering to creative professionals that helped to create the culture at Apple which gave birth to their ability to build a better mousetrap. Granted myapplelove's excellent points ? that Apple's superiority was in turn heightened by a woeful lack of innovation and attention to passionate detail on the part of their competitors ? but it should be also be pointed out that the dismal performance of everyone else would not have been apparent were it not for the rise of someone like Apple in building the better mousetrap with the world subsequently beating a path to its door.



    Without a missionary (i.e., Apple) to show the natives (i.e., the digital consumers) how miserable their life is without air-conditioning (i.e., Apple solutions), the natives would happily continue living in the sweltering heat (i.e., MicroSoft, et al.), oblivious to the advantages otherwise possible.



    This, together with the fact that the Apple's present is largely possible because of their past (together with a good amount of serendipity thrown in), makes a strong case for the old maxim ?You need to dance with who brung ya.? Not to throw out the baby with the bathwater, but I hear Mike Fix and myapplelove suggesting that it is precisely this internal core of excellence (consisting of creative professionals at Apple creating for creative professionals outside of Apple) that is the tail that ultimately ?wags the dog.? When this tail ceases to exist (or at least stops wagging) because the body at large is preoccupied with ?shipping concerns,? it may be time to at least take a look at your ?hole card.?



    Certainly with a war chest the size of Apple's, it would seem at least plausible that Apple would want to consider continued funding of professionally-targeted cutting-edge research, so that the ?trickle-down? could continue to feed the tsunami effect it helped engender.



    It is reasonable that any company, Apple or otherwise, is at best a collection of dynamic tensions that pull and push in disparate directions. Even a strong leader like Steve Jobs will inevitably allow a small front to form on the most hallowed of creative grounds (e.g., the lack of MacPro development, Mac-Server technology, Final Cut Pro X, etc.) as opposed to incremental gaffs that have little or nothing to do with the ?core? (e.g., iPhone 4 antenna problems, Ping, MobileMe, etc.).



    I think the concern here is that, with the passing of Steve Jobs, Tim Cook and others need to be especially attuned to ?dance with who brung 'em.? Not that an opportunistic debutante couldn't or shouldn't try to better their position on the dance floor and leave with a brighter prospect than the one they showed up with. It's just that all too often, the betterment is done at the expense (and rejection) of the original escort, when it's all too unnecessary.



    If the debutante is wrong, not only is their future now fraught with heartaches and heartbreaks, it's a long walk home from the dance in the dark.
  • rogifanrogifan Posts: 10,669member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by sunilraman View Post


    Indeed. From the book, it looked like Steve was a kind of guy that you either got along with or hated. If you got along with him and he respected you, then things happen. Otherwise, no dice.



    If Steve respected you and thought you had the smarts then you would work well together (even if Steve could still be brutal at times). Steve didn?t hire Eddy Cue or Jony Ive but they were clearly two people he respected. From various things I?ve read about Apple Eddy was considered Steve?s go-to ?Mr. Fix It? guy. And of course Jony became one of his best friends. In Adam Lashinsky?s book he mentioned that only 4 Apple employees attended Steve?s burial service. Eddy and Jony were two, the other two were Tim Cook and Katie Cotton.
  • solipsismxsolipsismx Posts: 19,566member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by myapplelove View Post


    Good call by the way on that ipad hd name...:



    I thought it sounded good, but I certainly didn't demand it.



    I noticed none of your justified demands didn't pan out. I guess it's time for you get that sleazy lawyer a retainer so you can sue Apple for damages.
  • charlitunacharlituna Posts: 7,068member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Mike Fix View Post


    It's truly unfortunate Apple now hates creative professionals these days, the people that stayed with the company when it was on the brink.



    Yep, how dare Apple be a public company with shareholders that demand that Apple make money and tons of it



    As for the hate comment, there is a vast difference between hate and not keeping you on he top pedestal. If they truly hated you they would have just dropped the Mac Pro, all pro apps, plug in support, support for third party monitors etc.



    You aren't their key focus anymore know that the family has more kids. And yet you still think as the oldest you are the only important one and your parents should just dump your siblings off on the side of the road and go back to spoiling you. Perhaps the issue isn't Apple, but your 'me me' bratty attitude
  • mactacmactac Posts: 315member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by sportyguy209 View Post


    Is no one going to comment on Johnson's new JC Penny campaign? Seriously, while the Apple Stores are genius, I don't see his new JC Penny campaign making any difference in that market. With Apple you have unique, amazing products. With JC Penny you have clothes you can get anywhere. I'm amazed he bailed out of Apple to go work for JC Penny.



    I hated the old buy one get second one half off sales tactic that JCPenney used to have. I was shopping less at JCP and more at Kohl's. Now I have noticed that Kohl's has started buy one get second one half off. That will keep me from shopping at Kohl's.
  • dasanman69dasanman69 Posts: 12,373member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by sportyguy209 View Post


    Is no one going to comment on Johnson's new JC Penny campaign? Seriously, while the Apple Stores are genius, I don't see his new JC Penny campaign making any difference in that market. With Apple you have unique, amazing products. With JC Penny you have clothes you can get anywhere. I'm amazed he bailed out of Apple to go work for JC Penny.



    Its called money, plus the challenge. Apple is doing extremely well and is a large ship on course and moving right along, JCPenny is a ship that needs to be righted, but here's the rub did Apple do well because of him or would've it done just as well without him?
  • slurpyslurpy Posts: 4,468member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by meh 2 View Post


    Originally Posted by Mike Fix







    Originally quoted by myapplelove





    It strikes me that there may a middle position to the two so admirably put forth here.



    With respect to Macky the Macky contention that Apple means no onus to creative professionals (with respect to their present resolve to mass-produce solutions for the planet), I admire his ironic twist of phrase ?Apple can't live in the past like you'd want, there's no future there.? However ? in fairness ? I'm not sure that Mike Fix nor myapplelove actually pines for Apple to resume their prior role from the past. However, the essence of the post, that ?Apple can't live in the past, there's no future there? is so succinct that it is unabashedly brilliant for its brevity (I think I'll steal it for my own future use).



    On the other hand, unless I seriously misinterpret the thrust of their assertions ? (to attempt my own somewhat contrite turn of phrase) Macky the Mack and applelove are also pointing out a parallel truth embedded in what Macky the Mack said ? namely, that Apple's present is, in large part, due to their past.



    Put another way, it is precisely Apple's legacy ? its heritage ? as a technological leader catering to creative professionals that helped to create the culture at Apple which gave birth to their ability to build a better mousetrap. Granted myapplelove's excellent points ? that Apple's superiority was in turn heightened by a woeful lack of innovation and attention to passionate detail on the part of their competitors ? but it should be also be pointed out that the dismal performance of everyone else would not have been apparent were it not for the rise of someone like Apple in building the better mousetrap with the world subsequently beating a path to its door.



    Without a missionary (i.e., Apple) to show the natives (i.e., the digital consumers) how miserable their life is without air-conditioning (i.e., Apple solutions), the natives would happily continue living in the sweltering heat (i.e., MicroSoft, et al.), oblivious to the advantages otherwise possible.



    This, together with the fact that the Apple's present is largely possible because of their past (together with a good amount of serendipity thrown in), makes a strong case for the old maxim ?You need to dance with who brung ya.? Not to throw out the baby with the bathwater, but I hear Mike Fix and myapplelove suggesting that it is precisely this internal core of excellence (consisting of creative professionals at Apple creating for creative professionals outside of Apple) that is the tail that ultimately ?wags the dog.? When this tail ceases to exist (or at least stops wagging) because the body at large is preoccupied with ?shipping concerns,? it may be time to at least take a look at your ?hole card.?



    Certainly with a war chest the size of Apple's, it would seem at least plausible that Apple would want to consider continued funding of professionally-targeted cutting-edge research, so that the ?trickle-down? could continue to feed the tsunami effect it helped engender.



    It is reasonable that any company, Apple or otherwise, is at best a collection of dynamic tensions that pull and push in disparate directions. Even a strong leader like Steve Jobs will inevitably allow a small front to form on the most hallowed of creative grounds (e.g., the lack of MacPro development, Mac-Server technology, Final Cut Pro X, etc.) as opposed to incremental gaffs that have little or nothing to do with the ?core? (e.g., iPhone 4 antenna problems, Ping, MobileMe, etc.).



    I think the concern here is that, with the passing of Steve Jobs, Tim Cook and others need to be especially attuned to ?dance with who brung 'em.? Not that an opportunistic debutante couldn't or shouldn't try to better their position on the dance floor and leave with a brighter prospect than the one they showed up with. It's just that all too often, the betterment is done at the expense (and rejection) of the original escort, when it's all too unnecessary.



    If the debutante is wrong, not only is their future now fraught with heartaches and heartbreaks, it's a long walk home from the dance in the dark.



    Not to rain on your parade, but this shit is getting old.
  • mj1970mj1970 Posts: 9,002member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by dasanman69 View Post


    Its called money, plus the challenge. Apple is doing extremely well and is a large ship on course and moving right along, JCPenny is a ship that needs to be righted, but here's the rub did Apple do well because of him or would've it done just as well without him?



    I'm guessing it is mostly the challenge...and that he's a retail guy.



    It sounds like it's what he likes to do. Apple is only partly a retail company, whereas that's all of what JCP does.



    And...he's young. I suspect he felt he reached the peak of what he could do at Apple. Probably didn't envision himself sitting around Apple for 20 more years.



    Finally...his success at Apple undoubtedly gave him great leverage in getting whatever retail job he wanted next. Strike while the iron is hot!
  • dick applebaumdick applebaum Posts: 11,303member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by sunilraman View Post


    Not many people realise it but Jobs was able to corral a massive number of people, not just by charisma or emotionally bashing people over the head.



    In the end he was able to build a company that "builds itself", as he always wanted.



    Check out this video about Next, and while Steve definitely seems characteristically annoyed in some scenes, he does cop a lot of stuff from his team. And this was when he was in his 30's. By the time he came back to Apple, he was further down the track in both leading and facilitating. Yeah, a tough guy to work with, but Steve certainly did some things right in terms of leading people. Walt Mossberg chuckled when Steve said "the best ideas win" and "we have great arguments"... But I think some of that is definitely true:



    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sOlqqriBvUM



    Watching that video was interesting... especially seeing Steve looking so young...



    He mentioned a classroom full of kids using Apple ][s -- he said 3-4th graders, but based on the dates I suspect that it was Saratoga High School's Computer lab -- installed in 1980 and about 4 miles from Apple HQ.



    It brought back memories of that era...



    -- no internet or www

    -- no WiFi

    -- no cell phones

    -- a $3,000 computer then, is equivalent to $10,000-$15,000 in today's dollars

    -- very few practical LANs, WANs or networks of any stripe (too limited and too expensive)

    -- 5Meg external HDDs costing $5,000



    A personal computer, was pretty much an island unto itself -- with, maybe a boustrophedonic dot-matrix printer and a 300-2,400 bits/second dial-up modem (thats 240 chars/bytes per second max).



    When we sold our Computer stores (1989), the ComputerLands, BusinessLands and most other chains/franchises had had their day and faded or disappeared.



    We were the oldest retail Apple reseller in California (maybe the US) except for one Store, di-no Computers -- they opened in 1978, a few months before us. My Dad bought his Apple ][ from Sal Cordero the owner (about a month before I bought mine in Sunnyvale).



    Oddly, the Di-No store is still in business at the same location:



    di-no.computers



    If you look at the map at the top of the page:







    In the upper left, where the word Pasadena appears under the 210 Freeway badge -- is the approximate location of the Pasadena Apple Store -- about 3 miles from di-no... (di-no is a contraction of the names of Sal's daughters: Diane and Noreen).





    The Apple store opened in 2004:



    Quote:

    "We're so excited to be in Old Pasadena," Ron Johnson of Apple said. "We've been eyeing Pasadena, but we were waiting to find a good location.'



    What pleases me is that the Apple Store can co-exist with an independent reseller, like Di-No;





    I suspect that is because both di-no and Apple are more interested in creating [repeat] customers -- than just pushing product!



  • tundraboytundraboy Posts: 1,432member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Rogifan View Post


    Which executives besides Ron Johnson have left recently? Most of the executives have been there for a long time. Eddy Cue and Jony Ive are 20+ year veterans and pre-date Steve's return. Phil Schiller and Scott Forstall came over with Steve and Tim Cook and Jeff Williams were hired shortly there after. There aren't many newbies in Apple's executive ranks.



    Maybe he's lamenting the loss of that Papermaster fellow.
  • tundraboytundraboy Posts: 1,432member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by sportyguy209 View Post


    Is no one going to comment on Johnson's new JC Penny campaign? Seriously, while the Apple Stores are genius, I don't see his new JC Penny campaign making any difference in that market. With Apple you have unique, amazing products. With JC Penny you have clothes you can get anywhere. I'm amazed he bailed out of Apple to go work for JC Penny.



    The campaign has just begun. Wait until the stores have been reconfigured and make your judgements then. Target also just sold 'clothes you can get anywhere' and yet Ron Johnson was able to do something unique there.
  • dick applebaumdick applebaum Posts: 11,303member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Mike Fix View Post


    It's truly unfortunate Apple now hates creative professionals these days, the people that stayed with the company when it was on the brink. The people that repeatedly showcase Apple products in movies and television, the people that show off their products on stage...



    Now Apple turns it's back.



    Creative professionals need an upgraded workstation, the processors are now available! We need matte screens! We need an OS that retains compatibility with our software!!!!



    Yeah, Apple demonstrated that hate by spending several years (and mega bucks) rethinking and rewriting Final Cut pro apps from the ground up -- you know they just did that to piss you off!



    Oddly, they have been able to update FCP X 3 times in 6 months -- where the existing FCP was bloated old code that would get a few feature additions, maybe every 12-18 months.



    From what I am seeing and reading FCP X and Motion 5 are pulling equal to or surpassing the same features of the old "pro" FCP Studio...



    Things like multicam and pulling keys are better than their FCP predecessors and, maybe, anything else available.



    Lots of 3rd-party plugins are being published at a fraction of the old prices.



    I could go on -- but you seem to want to wallow in self-pity that Apple doesn't give you exactly what you want when you want it.



    Let me add my pity to yours...
  • dick applebaumdick applebaum Posts: 11,303member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by umrk_lab View Post


    i guess this will again end up in discussions on how Steve was stealing ideas. In a large company, ideas come from everywhere, and after the debate has transformed/refined the original idea, it is often difficult to credit the originator. But one thing is for sure : the boss has to make the final decision, especially when it implies to "start all over again ...". This decision making responsibility is the key one.



    To me, this is the point that differentiates Apple from other companies : the Boss accepts full responsibility (does not delegate) and even presents the product himself on stage.



    In such a situation, it is clear he is personnally involved in all key decisions, and furthermore, anybody working on the product know they will hear from the Boss if something goes wrong. This makes, a big, very big difference, as opposed to companies where the Boss delegates everything, wants to be credited for success, but blame others in case of failure ...



    You can delegate authority, but you cannot delegate responsibility -- you can only accept it! I think that was proven in spades by that apothecary fellow at HP.
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