How Would Steve Jobs Look for a Job?

That’s nuts right? Steve Jobs will never have to look for a job.

But what if he did?

Would he wait for vacancies and then apply to the ones he was most qualified for? And once he’d done that, would he wait for the phone to ring for an interview?

I don’t know about you, but back when I was job hunting, I often did just that. I’d find vacancies and apply. Or I’d write to recruiters and then wait for them to call. For many years I did what everyone else does.

Then one day I was talking to my boss and we were discussing a particularly weird problem that we didn’t know how to solve and he said ‘be Steve Jobs.’

I looked at him a little funny. After all, I’m not a guy or a genius or an inventor of amazing things. I don’t own even one black turtle neck sweater.

“What do you mean ‘be Steve Jobs?'” I asked.

“Stop trying to think like you. Pretend you’re Steve Jobs and you’ve been called in to solve this problem.”

Amazingly it worked! Once I was freed from my own perceptions, I thought of new ideas that hadn’t occurred to me before.

Later, I read E-Myth, which is a book about small business management. In that book Michael Gerber asked an intriguing question. He tells his readers to imagine they had just bought their own business. And he asks ‘as the new owner, what would you change?’

It’s amazing that by asking yourself that question, you can instantly see things differently. You have all these ideas for what you would do if you had acquired the business, only of course you already own it!

And that’s why I want you to look at your job search or your career situation as if you were Steve Jobs. Actually, it doesn’t even have to be Steve. It could be Seth Godin. Or Oprah Winfrey. Or Calvin Klein. Or anyone, in any walk of life, whose creativity or leadership skills you genuinely admire.

The important thing is to step outside yourself and your own restrictions and your own biases and your own ways of thinking and then see if new ideas present themselves.

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