As a business owner and a marketer I have always admired Steve Jobs’ ability to stay true to the Apple Brand in every aspect of his business…his marketing, packaging, advertising, product development and customer service all drove home the same message, “We have a great respect for our customers.” It was inspiring to watch him work and experience the results of his efforts. I counted one evening…while other retail stores had one or two staff members on hand during the Christmas rush, the Apple Store had 18 friendly, knowledgeable and passionate staff members on hand. When I purchased my first iPhone and they said I could take it home, but I wouldn’t be able to activate it for about 2 hours because the Chicago store had just opened and the servers were jammed, they gave me the phone for free. The phone was activated an hour later. Apple takes customer service to a place no other company can match, at least not in my 48 years of experience.
Apple products are equally inspiring, easy to use on a number of different levels and visually a work of art. My MacBook Air is lighter than my ipad and the 5 hour battery and solid state technology mean that I never have to close any of the files I’m working on when moving from one client’s office to the next. That, and my iPhone have increased my productivity dramatically over the past few years and made my work more enjoyable.
On a personal level the impact has been just as efficacious. Family gatherings and dinner parties are enlivened by the best music in the world at my fingertips, pulling up songs I know my Dad will enjoy mixed with some of my favorites or the kids latest finds. The conversations and intellectual debate inspired by the information I’ve shared with friends and colleagues on my iPad have enriched my life tremendously. The TED Talks and the iPad App for exploring deep spaceare just two examples of a staggering amount of extraordinary information I can carry around as I navigate my day because of the passion and vision he created in his company. I’m confident that Steve gave Apple what it needs to build on that vision.