Yesterday evening I happened to watch a PBS special on Steve Jobs called One Last Thing. You can watch and enjoy it all in the next post if you are interested. Touched and inspired once again by the genius of this unique man allow me to explore with you some lessons learnt.
Think different. Steer away from the crowd and look sideways. Think laterally and risk shaking or even rocking the status quo. Just following the trends you will never discover your own voice and your unique genius.
Be curious. Never stop asking questions and more importantly, never stop challenging and questioning the answers that emerge. Innovation is always about giving birth, often to something nobody was asking for, but once birthed it becomes a gift and a blessing to many.
Engage all your gifts. Genius happens at the intersection of our heart and mind. Steve Jobs the engineer was at one with Steve Jobs the artist. All of his abilities, gifts and talents were seamlessly fused.
Be patient with your genius. Innovation and creativity take time like any other new creation does! You cannot rush a seed into becoming a flower or push an embryo into becoming a baby! Imagine the end, sow the seed, anchor yourself in joyful hope and be patient with the unfolding of your vision.
Fail forward. Undesired results will pop up from time to time. Failure is always a possibility. It is part of the creative process. The trick is each time, to fail closer to your goals and aspirations.
Put your own “dent in the universe”. Thinking differently has the natural effect of making a difference. Explore what really matters to you and then push it gently into the main stream of life through word, deed, and often silent witnessing. This is how you make a difference and dent the universe.
Never settle for good enough. In today’s world "good enough" often means "the same". Going beyond "good enough" thinking means going the extra mile, raising the bar, seeing another possibility when everybody else has already stopped looking.
Perfection is the enemy. Stop waiting for the perfect product, the perfect idea, the perfect moment. It simply does not exist. After doing all the necessary great work “release” it to the world and humbly learn from the feedback, engaging in constant improvement, learning, tweaking and enhancing your original project or product. In Japanese philosophy this attitude is called kaizen
Seek beauty and express it simply. Simple” like "small" is beautiful. Simple does note mean easy. It takes discernment to strip away all that is un-necessary so that what is necessary may speak with elegance and grace.
Listen to your heart and trust your gut Love what you do. Watching Steve Jobs unveil a new product was in itself a revelation. One could sense the sheer joy and the pure delight! Learn how to lead with the heart. It may be true that when push comes to shove, the heart is always right.
Know your audience. Steve Jobs was a modern tastemaker and he knew his audience well — often better than they knew themselves. He made creative decisions and business decisions based on his natural, almost intimate awareness of the nature of his audience. Attraction has nothing to do with you and everything to do with serving your audience’s needs and aspirations.