The following my piece from a larger compilation of thoughts by the authors at Social Media Explorer.
The History of Steve Jobs will forever be clouded by the Mystery of Steve Jobs.
He will go down as an irreplaceable force of creative vision, and years from now, people will still be wondering what would have happened if he’d just been given a few more years. In doing so, they will miss the truth about the man.
- His professional achievements were a product of his desire to finish. He knew his health better than anyone, and has known for years that his days were few. He ought to be celebrated for maximizing that time, and bringing so many projects to completion.
- His “secret sauce” is not unique. His Mystique was. Steve Jobs the Persona was bulletproof and undefeated, capable of turning imagination into reality like no one since Walt Disney. Steve Jobs the man was just like everyone else, with one exception: a gift for self-actualization — being able to squeeze the most out of the available resources, and not stopping until the cup was filled to overflowing. He made a lot of money through the merchandising of products and services, but what he really sold was The Illusion of Completeness. You bought from Apple because of your belief in him that nothing more could be done, that each parcel was a pinnacle. And next year, with cheaper parts and faster processors, that pinnacle was moving higher and you weren’t Complete until you had upgraded as well.
The biggest irony of his passing is the true vulnerability of Apple. The better he did at inculcating the above qualities in the rest of Apple culture, the more people there looked up to him. Which makes his passing even more acute in perception than it is in reality. “Apple” will be just fine, but it will never be Jobs’ Apple again. (Another pitfall of Personal Branding.)”