Apple, Steve Jobs and the Ability to Focus

Living the Dash comments on Apple’s ability to focus, and how it pretty much proves the fact that less is almost always more. Read the whole thing.

Here’s the quote by Steve Jobs on focus:

“Apple is a $30 billion company, yet we’ve got less than 30 major products. I don’t know if that’s ever been done before. Certainly the great consumer electronics companies of the past had thousands of products. We tend to focus much more. People think focus means saying yes to the thing you’ve got to focus on. But that’s not what it means at all. It means saying no to the hundred other good ideas that there are. You have to pick carefully.”

Amazing to think that Apple only has 30 products. However, they have the manpower to give each of those products the attention and focus it needs to become great.

Start saying no – to potential clients, promotional opportunities, new products and vendors that don’t fit. Opportunities will always be knocking, but you should never just let strangers walk right in.

Similar posts on Brett’s Blog:

  1. Branding: A Product of Strategy
  2. Return on Attention 

11 responses to “Apple, Steve Jobs and the Ability to Focus

  1. Coca-Cola is a $28.9 billion company and only sells one product (with a few various flavors). So what’s up?

  2. I think that focus is a big problem with budding entrepreneurs and inventors. They don’t want to exclude anyone as an investigator so they fool themselves into think that their product or service is for everyone.

  3. Yeah I agree. being able to say “No” at the right time can be more profitable than saying yes to every opportunity.

  4. Pingback: Marketing One Product « RaeSea Internet Marketing Blog

  5. Michael Lombardi

    Coca-cola has many products, not just cola:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coca-Cola_brands

    After reading this post, I immediately thought of Costco, which typically stocks 10% (I believe) the number of products your average super-grocery store carries. They don’t offer different sizes and varieties, so they can sell high volumes of the size/variety they do stock. That in turn allows them to negotiate very low prices.

  6. Costco also often asks for an offering that’s specific to them. I’m experiencing that currently with trying to get them to consider a product from my company.

    Yeah, Coke is big, and each one of those flavors and variations has to count as a separate product for the sake of this discussion.

  7. So there are only 30 variations of Apple computers, i-pods, i-phones, and whatever else they make? Wow, I’m impressed. Not really.

  8. Not sure, unimpressed one. But I’m pretty sure there are a lot less variations than there are for coke products.

  9. Michael Lombardi

    cwd,
    I wasn’t counting every flavor of soda as a separate product–although they certainly could be counted separately as they have regional varieties.

    I was refering to Coke’s mega-categories of:
    Colas, Teas, Energy Drinks, Sports Drinks, Waters.

    I’m not an Apple user, so I don’t know: what are Apple’s mega-categories?
    Computers, Portable Media Players, Phone, surely something else. I think they’ve got a slingbox type thing.

  10. I think the other thing to keep in mind here is comparing the computer/tech industry and the soft drink industry are definitely apples and oranges. Most of what Apple sells is not consumable, like Coke’s.

  11. I thought you were talking about focusing. My bad.

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