I think I always followed people who inspired me. That’s how I find the right path. Most of the time I did not realize I was taking someone as a role model. But when we think of it we all wanted to be like the popular guy/girl in school at some point. Or also we take our parents or other members of the family as models. For some it also can be astronauts or famous soccer player or whatever.
I meditated about this idea. And a couple of weeks ago we talked about it with my wife. I asked her who was her role model. It has to be someone somewhat famous. She did not really know… after a while she said Audrey Hepburn. She asked me back. I had thought about it for the previous day and the answer surprised me (and her too): I said Steve Jobs. It’s the only person I could think of. Strange enough I don’t really knew the guy. Oh I can list in details about how awesome are Apple products, etc… but it is not the point. I am sure he was not a half-God either. Let just think of Foxconn, the factory that builds Apple computers in China. It does not seem to be a really paradise for workers as Cupertino, Apple headquarters, is.
So I had this idea of role models post in my notebook for a couple of weeks and I feel awkward to deliver it now… kind of riding on a Steve Jobs hype. I think people around me knew that he was important to me as I received two sympathy message last week. My cousin who is more of a hardcore Apple fan received 11 messages. Isn’t that weird?
The truth is I was sad, I realized it when I passed in front of Montreal Apple Store and saw all the messages pasted on the window. I started to feel tears coming to my eyes. I am surely not the only one who took him as a role model.
What I really found admirable about Steve Jobs was not the products he created but the vision he stuck to. The fact that he did not listen to the users but kept creating following only his idea of what makes a great computer (or phone, or music player). I don’t know if you follow the Apple fan’s forums or discussion boards but it was interesting to see this love/hate feeling they had towards Apple. For every new products I felt most the fans were disappointed because they did not get the feature they wanted to have. They did not feel like Apple listened to them. And it was actually true. Steve Jobs kept leading his product designs like a dictator only telling the end users how they had to change and how they had to work.
That’s how I take Steve Jobs as a role model. A dictator but in a nice way. I think this is what a true leader is.
Who is your role model? And why this person inspires you?
Leave a comment or write about it on your blog and link back to this post. I’ll put a link at the end of this post.