Before Apple, no one considered that technology could be user-friendly. The company has transformed how we think and live today. When Steve Jobs created Apple, he kept his passion for creativity and innovation as the focus for the company’s success. From that strong foundation, born were products that were simple to use, elegant in design, and most importantly, centered around the user-experience. Apple established a template for innovation and there are some important lessons we can learn from Apple.
Considered as the most valuable brand in the world, Apple has set the bar for what it means to prosper in a time of many competing technological creations. When it comes to companies to look to for institutional direction, Apple should be at the top of your list.
There’s a great deal of guidance we can all learn from Apple, but here are the three most important lessons of all:
1. Stay Simple
For a very long time, it was thought that if customers couldn’t figure out how to use a device properly, it was their own fault. It was on them to find out what buttons to press, what software to download, and what informational sessions to attend. Technology was seemingly meant to be complicated. It was exclusively accessible to the young and the educated. Apple changed this way of thinking.
Through simplicity, they created devices that integrated what people of all ages, demographics, and academic ability could easily understand. When someone is given an iPhone for the first time, they don’t need to be directed on how to use it because the applications are instructional and the graphics that represent them are parallel to their real life uses. Take the Notes application for example: it’s designed to look like an actual spiral notebook. The application used to call people is a phone icon and iMessage, which is used for texting, looks like a chat bubble.
2. Cater to the Customer
Customers enjoy their experience with Apple products and at Apple stores. Around the country, each Apple store has essentially the same experience no matter if you’re in Colorado or North Dakota.
In the biography Steve Jobs by Walter Issacson there’s a passage describing the marketing philosophy of Apple that was put together early on in the company’s creation.
Forbes sums up these three goals as: (1) understand and serve the customer better than anyone else, (2) forget about everything else, and (3) make sure every little thing you do serves goal (1), always and everywhere. Jobs knew that in order to gain loyalty in his brand he needed customers to depend on Apple, so he made a brand worth trusting in.
3. Think to the future
The company is constantly evolving, constantly considering its next move. What makes Apple stand out as a company is its ability to see a problem or inconvenience in society that hasn’t been solved yet by technology. Apple looks at what competitors are doing and does it in a better, more efficient, easier way.
In 2003, Jobs noticed that people wanted an affordable platform to buy music online. Thus, the iTunes Music Store was established, soon becoming the top music retailer in the world. In 2008, the App Store was created. On this one-of-a-kind platform, thousands of developers were able to make easy money through selling applications.
Apple didn’t stick to the status quo. Here’s a quote from Steve Jobs himself ratifying that:
Here’s to the crazy ones — the misfits, the rebels, the troublemakers, the round pegs in the square holes. The ones who see things differently — they’re not fond of rules. You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them, but the only thing you can’t do is ignore them because they change things. They push the human race forward, and while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius, because the ones who are crazy enough to think that they can change the world, are the ones who do.Steve JobsCreator of Apple