Reflecting on the life of Steve Jobs, I’ve decided to share two lessons that I think we can learn from him.
The first is ‘think differently’.
“…we may not even believe we have something unique to offer. Rather than figure out what we are each about, far too many of us live within the boxes others define.
In most contexts that I’ve come across in various jobs, churches, organisations the prevailing mantra is essentially ‘change is bad; safe is good.’
It strikes me that Steve Jobs was incapable of thinking in those terms. He was wired to change things, to improve them, to move them forward. He has been called visionary – which he undoubtedly was – but more importantly he harnessed curiosity to his creativity and courage to make decisions that others baulked at.
So, what’s the application?
Well, for those of us who work in the public sector – the archetypal static, bureaucracy – more of the same will not be sustainable. Growing demands and expectations coupled with dwindling resources for the foreseeable future mean that we will require to adopt radically different approaches. We will need to push ourselves beyond the boundaries of ‘safe’, and we would do well to adopt the courage (and driven-ness) of Steve Jobs in making these changes.
Public service (and, hence, servanthood) demand it of us, and we will be negligent if we do not think, and act, outside of the box.
“The people who think they are crazy enough to change the world, are the ones who do.