The 10 Commandments of Steve
Kahney, Leander, Newsweek
Byline: Leander Kahney
More than anything else, Jobs's genius is in managing the creative process. Here's his playbook.
Go for perfect.
Jobs sweats the details. The night before the first iPod launched, the Apple staff stayed up all night replacing headphone jacks because Jobs didn't think they were "clicky" enough.
Tap the experts.
Jobs hired architect I. M. Pei to design the NeXT logo and recruited the Gap's Mickey Drexler to Apple's board before launching the company's retail chain.
Jobs is as proud of the products he has killed as of the ones he has released. He worked hard on a Palm Pilot clone, only to kill it when he realized cell phones would eclipse PDAs. That freed up his engineers to develop the iPod.
Shun focus groups.
Jobs famously said, "People don't know what they want until you show it to them." So he acts as a one-man focus group, taking prototype products home and testing them for months.
Never stop studying.
When designing early brochures for Apple, he pored over Sony's use of fonts, layout, and the weight of the paper. Working on the case for the first Mac, he wandered around Apple's parking lot studying the bodywork of German and Italian cars.
Prototype to the extreme. …