Management guru Tom Peters, in this brief post, obviously leans towards the egotistical “insaniacs.”
Brand Dubai (Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum)
Brand Apple/etc./etc./iPod (Steve)
Brand California Reborn (the Guvenator)
Surely these are among the more stunning Branding/World-changing stories of the last 20 years:
How many are the product of careful market research?
How many are the results of visionary insaniac dreamers?
How many are at least partially the product of rather well-developed egos?
(Are there any market-research-driven stories of a similar magnitude? Starbucks???)
I have to agree with Peters on at least one of those stunners: Steve Jobs. His ferocious focus on “insanely great products” has certainly produced some hot, “world-changing” brands: Mac, iPod, iPhone, Pixar.
No one is saying that market research — especially listening carefully to customers and their wants/needs/desires — is useless. But clearly a “visionary insaniac dreamer,” who drives his staff to create “insanely great” products, can produce not just incremental improvements but far more dramatic results that leapfrog the competition.