1. Akshay Masand's Avatar

    While at the British Business conference in London during the 2012 Olympics, Apple’s Senior Vice President of Industrial Design, Sir Jonathan Ive, offered his thoughts on the creative process at Apple and other anecdotes about his two decades at the company. One of the things that stand out the most is when he told attendees that Apple’s “goal isn’t to make money.” Instead, the company’s primary goal is to make great products. This he said was Steve Jobs’ motto upon his return to the company in 1997, where he claimed Jobs firmly believed that profits would follow the great products they should focus on creating, rather than focusing on profits first:

    We are really pleased with our revenues but our goal isn't to make money. It sounds a little flippant, but it's the truth. Our goal and what makes us excited is to make great products. If we are successful people will like them and if we are operationally competent, we will make money.
    Ives also offered a bit more insight into the perspective of how things work at Apple, mentioning the following during his keynote session:

    To me I still think it's remarkable that at a point in time on a Tuesday afternoon there isn't an idea and then suddenly later on there is an idea. Invariably they start as a tentative, barely-formed thought that becomes a conversation between a couple of people.

    Apple then builds a prototype that embodies the idea and that's when the idea goes through "the most incredible transition". You go from something tentative and exclusive to something tangible and -- by nature of it being a thing -- a table of people can sit around it and start to understand it; it becomes inclusive and it galvanises and points to a direction for effort.
    With a focus on building just better products, Ives claimed that the motto was very different to previous attempts (referring to Apple when Jobs wasn’t around) to turn the company around. According to him, there were several times where the fixation of making better products, almost caused Apple to shelve products such as the iPhone as there seemed to be multiple problems. Here he referred to an issue where holding the phone to one’s ear caused the ear to dial a number as part of the issues that arose during the design process. At the time, what seemed insurmountable turned out to be a great success for the company, with 26 million devices selling in the last quarter alone and Apple gaining steady ground in the U.S. smartphone market.

    Perhaps, the speech Ives’ made might make other companies rethink their philosophy and company motto. If this turns out to be the case, more companies might see better profit, there might be a healthier competition in the tech industry, and in turn consumers will also benefit.

    Source: Wired (UK)

    Twitter: @AkshayMasand
    2012-07-31 03:35 AM
  2. Anonymous's Avatar
    Great products --> profit.
    2012-07-31 03:48 AM
  3. Zamphire's Avatar
    Step 1: Make great products/steal underpants
    Step 2: ... (lose prototype in a bar maybe?)
    Step 3: Profit!
    2012-07-31 03:04 PM
  4. GmAz's Avatar
    Oh really Apple, then why do your pieces of crap cost two and sometimes three times as much as other products?
    2012-07-31 08:07 PM
  5. Rcworship's Avatar
    Oh really Apple, then why do your pieces of crap cost two and sometimes three times as much as other products?
    Yeah, and, uh...why does everyone pay that amount?!
    2012-08-01 07:07 AM
  6. H4CK3R's Avatar
    Great products --> profit.
    Which is the exact reason why Apple succeeds more than other companies.
    2012-08-01 03:07 PM