Product Over People

by Drew Wilson


I just watched this video of Jony Ive talking about some lessons he learned from Steve Jobs. He outlines two lessons he learned.


This one hits home because it is something I’m doing a lot around recently. More announcements on that soon, but I really want to move in this direction at this point in my life. I personally enjoy doing many things at once. And life for me is not all about what work legacy I leave behind, but how I enjoy the time I have. However, I love change. So I’ve started making some changes to become laser focused.


Jony then tells a second story about how he was concerned about words that were said to his team by Steve Jobs. He thought it was a bit harsh of Steve to say whatever he said. He asked Steve if he could tone it down a bit because he cared about his team members. Steve told Jony that he was being vain because we was valuing what people thought of him more than the product.


Jony was somehow convinced by Steve that he was concerned about how people thought of him. But from what Jony said he was concerned about the feelings of the people, not their perception of Jony.

Steve is telling Jony here to put product over people. This is a legendary component of Apple (or maybe just Steve). I think it's gross.

There are a lot of great lessons to be learned from people who have achieved tremendous amounts of success and been through many storms during their life. Steve is one of those people. However, I hope my fellow entrepreneurs don't look up to this attitude as something to aspire to. Look to other leaders instead like Richard Branson, he has the opposite (and correct) view on people.

After all we're building products for people. We should put people over product and place a higher value on the well-being of others than the products we produce.

People Over Product!