Why I Changed Careers
And oddly, how a commercial changed my life.
Imagine being hired as the CEO of a computer company that was rapidly sinking and in danger of closing. The situation is so dire that it’s joked the company is “like a ship with a hole at the bottom, leaking water, and it’s your job to point it in the right direction.” What do you do? How do you recapture the passion people used to have for your company?
This difficult situation led Steve Jobs, recently appointed interim CEO of Apple in 1997 to introduce one of the most powerful and successful marketing campaigns of his generation. The campaign’s commercials, magazine ads and billboards never included a single mention or visual of a computer or any other product. Yet, this brilliant strategy helped fuel one of the greatest business comebacks in history, and in 2010, after purchasing my first iPhone, inspired me to change my entire career path.
After playing with this awesome device for a few hours, I wanted to learn more about the people who made it. I learned not just more about the infamous Apple CEO, but what he stood for and why he did what he did. I learned about him being rejected by his parents and the first family to adopt him. I learned about him being ousted from the company he started. And I learned that he was responsible for the Pixar movies I grew up watching. And ultimately, as a 20 year old, it lead me to the video below where Steve Jobs first introduced one of the most effective commercial campaigns in history.
I always hated commercials, but I loved this one! I never knew a commercial could touch my very identity, that in 60 seconds, it could produce more powerful feelings than most TV shows, that in that same 60 seconds, it could inspire me to complete change how I do business, and soon after, my entire career.
Watch for your self, maybe you’ll feel what I felt, maybe you won’t, but either way, you’ll understand me a little bit better.
(Watch the last minute for the commercial, but if you have time, I’d recommend watching the entire video).