Can Apple survive without Steve Jobs? Will Apple’s stock bounce back? Is this the end of innovation and genius at Apple?
Who gives a shit. Companies come and go. Innovation still happens. If Apple falls apart a decade from now (and it would take at least that long for that to happen), another company will take its place. Maybe a Sony. Maybe an LG. Maybe a company some kid working out of his parents’ garage half a world away will start a year from now with some friends. And maybe in twenty years, Apple will still be the innovation juggernaut it is today, the game-changer, the company that year after year, manages to both redefine and advance the way human beings interface with technology.
So who gives a shit. Really. There’s something bigger here than the race to predict Apple’s future and write this week’s definitive article on Steve Jobs, and it’s this: Steve Jobs. The human being. The husband. The father. The friend.
Maybe you’re worried iPhone 5 and iPad 3 won’t come as fast or be designed as well as their predecessors. Well, maybe it isn’t really about you and that fancy little piece of technology that you think makes you the coolest kid in the coffee shop. Maybe there is more to Steve Jobs than being CEO of Apple. Maybe this is really just about a guy fighting for his life.
If Steve were my son, my father, my brother, my best friend, I would trade Apple and all of its success and revenue a thousand times over if it meant saving his life. No hesitation. Not even a hint of it. You can always rebuild a business, start over, change the world again. People though, when they’re gone, they’re gone.
So can Apple survive without Steve Jobs? Who gives a shit. It’s a selfish question. Get over it. The baker is dying and we’re sitting around wondering if his apprentice’s croissants will be as delicious? Seriously? Forgive me, but that seems a little cold, doesn’t it? We can do better.
So today, this week, next month, I won’t sit here and add to the fray of discussions and opinion pieces regarding Apple, the future of the company or the evolution of the brand post-Steve Jobs. There’s no need, and I don’t need the traffic that badly. Will I write about Apple again? You bet. Will I dig into Apple’s universe for insights into brand management, the importance of design, leadership lessons, the importance of vision and a million other topics? Of course. I just won’t do it now. Not under these circumstances.
Mr. Jobs, sending good vibes your way, sir. Beat this thing.