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No More Typewriters

What was the most important rule that Apple ever put into effect? Bill Murphy Jr. argues that it happened back in 1981.*

A memo went out to all Apple employees: “EFFECTIVE IMMEDIATELY!! NO MORE TYPEWRITERS ARE TO BE PURCHASED, LEASED, etc. Apple is an innovative company. We must believe and lead in all areas. If word processing is so neat, then let’s all use it! Goal: by 1-1-81, NO typewriters at Apple… We believe the typewriter is obsolete. Let’s prove it inside before we try and convince our customers.”

Murphy wraps up his article by encouraging his readers to take this moment to ask some diagnostic questions: “Are my team and I as firm in our convictions as Apple was back in 1981? And if not, as the 40-year-old Apple memo put it, what else should we do to demonstrate our commitment, before we ‘try and convince our customers?’”

When it comes to living and multiplying a Jesus-like disciplemaking way-of-life, do you have your own edition of this 1981 memo?

I think there are two important lessons that this memo calls us engage. First, they have a defined target. Apple knew they were about the personal computer. “If we are about computers, then let’s use them.” If we are about following Jesus, then let’s do it. The second lesson is that this was a group effort. This wasn’t one employee saying, I’m done with typewriters. This was a community of people who were committing to a way of life.

  • Are you able to simply state what it means to follow Jesus in his disciplemaking way-of-life?

  • Are you able to identify one key action step that will help you walk more closely with Jesus?

  • Are you able to identify at least one other person that you can take this discplemaking journey with, starting today?

What is your simple and clear version of the 1981 apple memo? For us at Cadre, it is our annual action plan for “daily” reading the Bible together with our friends. You can learn more or simply toss the Typewriter and join with us at:

-mark obrien Cadre Missionary & Disciplemaking Friend

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