Steve Jobs, former Apple chief executive officer who died yesterday (Oct. 5) at the age of 56, has been hailed as a cultural zeitgeist. He's changed the way the world communicates, interacts and entertains. He's even changed the way we think.
His company's impact on how we do business has been no less impressive. Here are 12 ways Jobs' Apple has changed the way we work.
"Apple products have completely revolutionized the way that we do business, both for ourselves and our clients. Their simple, clean design and stunning interfaces masked incredibly complex technology, making world-class technology accessible to the everyday business person. Five years ago, technology hindered us, but with Apple, technology now lifts us." -- Ryan O’Ramsay Barrett, CEO, ORAM Corporate Advisors
Created a tech culture in every company
"Jobs was a true hero of technology and innovation. It is his drive for excellence in the business and consumer marketplace that continues to inspire me and the way in which I run Optimal Networks. His products speak for themselves. The introduction of the iPad has revolutionized computing as we knew it." -- Heinan Landa, CEO, Optimal Networks
Made technology beautiful
"Jobs' work is revolutionary because he thought beyond the devices to their day-to-day application. He took the tech out of technology, creating user-friendly products that were compatible and easy to use. And my favorite part of Jobs' work — he showed that the latest, greatest piece of machinery could be beautiful and visually stunning." -- Christina Dempsey, senior account coordinator, Sara Brady Public Relations, Inc.
"Right now, we're in pre-production for a feature film. We've gone through several drafts of the script in the past few weeks. Two years ago, we started reading scripts on the iPad, the first good alternative to the printed page for scripts. I would estimate that in the last two weeks alone, we would have printed 10,000 pages of scripts for our production team and actors. We printed zero thanks to everyone having iPads." -- Jason Stein, founding partner, Laundry Service Media
Made everyone a techie
"My Mac makes it so much easier for me to get the tools I need right when I need them and I always know they are going to work. With a PC, I had to research software options, find one that I could download (or wait to get a disc in the mail) and then just hope it didn't crash my computer when I installed it. Now, with the Mac and especially with last year's addition of the AppStore, apps are available for immediate download any time I want one. Plus, before even buying, I can see feedback from other users, the publisher's responses and I know that it has passed Apple's tests and won't crash my machine. " -- Rachel Honoway, Honoway Interactive, LLC.
No more waiting
"If we show a rental property to a prospective tenant and they want to apply, we can go to the online application on our website and have them fill it out right on the spot using the iPad. No need to print out a lot of papers and we know for sure that the application is getting filled out and not just thrown away." -- Lakeisha W. Johnson, owner, Absolute Property Solutions, LLC.
Leveled the playing field
"The iPad has truly revolutionized the way our sales team presents to prospects and clients.It has made presentations superb — more efficient and convenient. Whenever I have an appointment with a client or prospect, the iPpad has a very impactful presentation and appearance. It has provided for a more powerful presentation than a tactile, hardbound option, and likewise, seems to impress clients more so as well. It helps to show my company's commitment to investing in innovative technology that we furthermore use to help their business (in my case, group meetings and events). The presentation support from the quality of the tablet furthers my confidence going into a meeting with my best foot forward." -- Eric Pease, regional sales manager, Wild Dunes Resort
"I take it all for granted now, but Apple technology has had a profound effect on how I do business. I'm no longer bound to a desk to receive calls and email or do research thanks to the seamlessness integration between devices and intuitiveness of Apple products. I no longer have to take a camera, MP3 player or DVD player everywhere I go. All of it is on my iPhone. Slip it in my pocket and I'm ready to go anywhere. I can't imagine my professional or personal life without my iPhone. -- Ann Marie van den Hurk, principal, Mind The Gap Public Relations, LLC.
Made everyone an IT expert
"Apple eliminated the need for me to have a dedicated IT guy. When I opened my Mac-based office, pretty much everything worked straight out of the box. I may have paid a little more up front, but I certainly saved money after what it would have cost in time and money to set up a PC server and workstations. The integration and ease of use that you get with Apple products is unmatched, and Apple has spoiled me because of it." -- Tripp Watson, attorney, The Watson Firm
"Apple products not only helped me innovate the way I operate, but they also made me more time-efficient. If I am working with a PC, I have to take a product photo with a traditional camera and I have to find the connector cable, which I misplace. Download the photo, name the file. Go into social media accounts, sign in then upload. If I use my iPad or iPhone, I take a quick photo, go into my Twitter and Facebook apps, touch the photo and it's live. Small businesses are running on empty these days; we need quick and easy [solutions] to stay relevant and Apple gives me this edge. As an entrepreneur, Steve Jobs was a visionary that paid the ultimate attention to detail. I strive every day to live up to similar standards." -- Ellen Cagnassola, owner, Sweetsoaps
"Because I'm working 50 hours per week on average, the iPad allows my work-life balance to exist. It allows me to live part-time in Philadelphia when the company is based in NYC." -- Dara Epstein, partner, SmartSitting
"This kind of portability enables me to hop on an airplane and have a conversation with my airline seatmates without having to haul a bunch of paperwork with me. If they are not interested in conversing, I can hook up to the airborne Wi-Fi and continue communicating with my clients even though I'm at 30,000 feet." -- Philip Mandel, certified health coach, Take Shape for Life