Tag Archives: Steve Jobs

Audience Development and Steve Jobs

The news about Steve Jobs passing is all over the internet and on the international news.  He was an innovator of our times.  He was creative and a go getter.  The combination changed our world.

One of the articles I found was: The 13 Most Memorable Quotes From Steve Jobs

I was intrigued by his focus and dedication to providing products that blew our minds.  Here are a few of the quotes I particularly enjoyed since they relate to audience development:

“It’s really hard to design products by focus groups. A lot of times, people don’t know what they want until you show it to them.”

[BusinessWeek, May 25, 1998]

I’m not sure I completely agree, but the fact that he went a step beyond, most likely using what he would prefer to use, he did ultimately come up with products that surprised us and that we wanted to use.  He paid full attention to the quality of the product, how it looked and felt and what it was able to do for us.

“That’s been one of my mantras — focus and simplicity. Simple can be harder than complex: You have to work hard to get your thinking clean to make it simple. But it’s worth it in the end because once you get there, you can move mountains.”

[BusinessWeek, May 25, 1998]

Our messages, our outreach programs, need to be more simple.  The audience needs to understand and connect with us in a moment.  This is why this quote resonated with me.

“Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you find it. And, like any great relationship, it just gets better and better as the years roll on. So keep looking until you find it. Don’t settle.”

[Stanford commencement speech, June 2005]

Don’t settle.  Enough said.

“I think if you do something and it turns out pretty good, then you should go do something else wonderful, not dwell on it for too long. Just figure out what’s next.”

[NBC Nightly News, May 2006]

This quote also meant to me to never stop being innovative.  If you keep doing the same programs and events over and over, you will never get to the “what’s next.”

“You can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something — your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever. This approach has never let me down, and it has made all the difference in my life.”

[Stanford commencement speech, June 2005]

Having trust and confidence is key.  Where you get this from is your choice.  Sometimes you need to be quiet and listen to find the answers and then be brave enough to implement what you discover.  Other people can tell you what to think, but don’t listen to them if it doesn’t fully resonate with who you are and what you want to achieve.  The dots will connect on their own if you do trust and have confidence in yourself and your ideas.

Steve Jobs was an amazing person of our times, and he also serves as an example that each of us has the ability and the opportunity to be this amazing too.

Cheers to happy and loyal audiences,


Shoshana Fanizza

Audience Development Specialists



“Never treat your audience as customers, always as partners.”
~James Stewart


Filed under Audience Development