Sunday, October 9, 2011


I have been a fan of Apple and Steve Jobs since running my first VisiCalc program on an Apple IIe.  Even though I am now a PC owner, I still use a lot of Apple things that were designed and imagineered by Steve Jobs.

I started reading some of his words of wisdom and found that a lot of them can be applied to our industry.  

Here are just some of his business sayings:

“Innovation distinguishes between a leader and a follower.”

“Design is not just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works.”

“Why join the navy if you can be a pirate?”

“Be a yardstick of quality. Some people aren't used to an environment where excellence is expected.” (my personal favorite)

“A lot of companies have chosen to downsize, and maybe that was the right thing for them. We chose a different path. Our belief was that if we kept putting great products in front of customers, they would continue to open their wallets.”

“To turn really interesting ideas and fledgling technologies into a company that can continue to innovate for years, it requires a lot of disciplines.”

“You can't just ask customers what they want and then try to give that to them. By the time you get it built, they'll want something new.”

“Sometimes when you innovate, you make mistakes. It is best to admit them quickly, and get on with improving your other innovations.”

“I think we're having fun. I think our customers really like our products. And we're always trying to do better.”

“Here's to the crazy ones, the misfits, the rebels, the troublemakers, the round pegs in the square holes... the ones who see things differently -- they're not fond of rules... You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them, but the only thing you can't do is ignore them because they change things... they push the human race forward, and while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius, because the ones who are crazy enough to think that they can change the world, are the ones who do.”

“I think this is the start of something really big. Sometimes that first step is the hardest one, and we've just taken it.”

“We are very careful about what features we add because we can't take them away.”

“We do not say anything about future products. We work on them in secret, then we announce them.”

“We're the last guys left in this industry who can do it, and that's what we're about.”

“Fit and Finish”


William said...

Jobs was indeed a genius who was the epitome of "out of the box" thinking. Too bad the modular industry has not seen anyone like him; or, as equally important someone who would emulate what the man espoused, ala your tidbits of historical information.

SPeterson said...

I think the "out of the box" thinking is in the modular industry, but is not heard at times. I find that the "old guard" is hesitant to take chances or to think forward. It seems that reactive is better than proactive. I see it all the time with HUD GMs stepping in to take a Mod GM position. "On the line and out the door" just doesn't work nowadays. How many plants that are closed had the HUD-code philosophy in the upper management positions?

William said...

To SPeterson -- or still have HUD code people running modular operations. And look at two of the larger corporate entities that do both HUD and FULLY CODE COMPLIANT MODULAR and you will find HUD code mentality permeates upper echelon of management. Too bad for those operations.

Anonymous said...

HUD mentality is what will keep Nationwide Homes from becoming a national company. The single plant in VA cannot keep its production lines filled because they are getting no positive sales or marketing help from their new owners. Cavco is a HUD builder and I think that's what our plant will become if we can't get the numbers up.

Anonymous said...

Cavco does a good job in managing financial aspects of the company but when it comes to differentiating themselves from others historically I do not think they can make the case they have done the job. What has changed for them, and helped financially, were their acquisitions. I, like Anonymous, do not see them making a significant difference in Nationwide. I see Nationwide once again being sold off to a third party operation, or more sadly closing. I hope I am wrong as Nationwide deserves to survive.