Get to know the partners [from the archives]

An email I wrote to my company in 2005...

To: Staff

I just came back from a Stanford GSB (Graduate School of Business) dinner awarding the most entrepreneurial company of 2004.

Apple won.

Steve Jobs <> was one of the entrepreneurs that inspired me to come to Silicon Valley and start companies. He had several inspirational things to say tonight, and I thought I'd just share one thought with you.

When Steve was explaining why there was a perceived "Cult of Mac", he thought it was more subtle and interesting than "cult" behavior. He described Apple customers that after some time of using a Mac would think of something he needed to do, and when he checked, "Oh my gosh!", the Mac's developers have already thought of it. Pleasant surprises would happen repeatedly. It's like when you look at the back of a chest of drawers, and "oh my gosh!", they had varnished the back, where most furniture makers would think that no one would look.

Brand is about trust. Every time someone has a positive experience with a product, his trust of the company/brand goes up. A negative experience takes away from the trust. People need short-cuts to figure what to buy and branding (i.e. trust) is used as that short-cut to make a decision.

Every time we get an "oh my gosh!" experience (OMG experience) in a customer, our brand value goes up.

I'd like to challenge each one of you to strive for the OMG experience.

The reason I didn't just confine this email to engineers is that every one in our company can make observations about our products and how customers use them. And I expect strong opinions from each one of you as to how we can give our products more opportunities to give OMG experiences to our customers.

There will always be temptations to "compromise" and do less than an OMG level job. Let's try to avoid the temptations. Let's keep going in the right direction in our quest to build OMG products!


Peng T. Ong
May 10, 2005