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Steve Case Quotes


An American businessman best known as the co-founder and former chief executive officer and chairman of America Online (AOL).
(1958 - )

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And I'd say one of the great lessons I've learned over the past couple of decades, from a management perspective, is that really when you come down to it, it really is all about people and all about leadership.
 

And so the idea was, well maybe you can take an Atari video game machine, where people plug in a game cartridge, and plug in a modem, and tie that into a telephone, and essentially turn that game in the machine into an interactive terminal.
 

And what we did with this new company in 1985 is we did start focusing on PCs instead of video game machines, because we learned the hard lesson about bringing a product to market in a consumer world where it's very expensive to build a brand and get distribution and so forth.
 

Because I do think - not just in building AOL - but just the world in which we live is a very confusing, rapidly changing world where technology has accelerated.
 

But the idea that some day people would want to be able to interact and get stock quotes and talk with other people or all these different things, I just believed that was going to happen.
 

Five or ten years ago, when it was clear the Internet was becoming a mainstream phenomenon, it was equally clear that a lot of people were being left out and could be left behind.
 

For better or worse, that is true with any new innovation, certainly any new technological innovation. There's many good things that come out of it, but also some bad things. All you can do is try to maximize the good stuff and minimize the bad stuff.
 

From a relatively early age I got interested in business.
 

I continue to have a special pride and passion for AOL, and I strongly believe that AOL - once the leading Internet company in the world - can return to its past greatness.
 

I do think actually in this case the government does get credit for funding some of the basic research.
 

I do think that a general liberal arts education is very important, particularly in an uncertain changing world.
 

I enjoyed high school and college, and I think I learned a lot, but that was not really my focus. My focus was on trying to figure out what businesses to start.
 

I had an older brother who passed away recently, an older sister and a younger brother.
 

I think it took us nine years to get one million subscribers to AOL, and then in the next nine years we went from one million to 35 million.
 

I think the support of the other team at AOL and everybody's really shared passion and belief about this and - saying that some day everybody was going to be on line.
 

I was born and raised in Honolulu, Hawaii.
 

I was not an outstanding student. I did a reasonable amount of work. I got generally good - pretty good grades, but I was not that passionate about getting straight A's.
 

If you're doing something new you've got to have a vision. You've got to have a perspective. You've got to have some north star you're aiming for, and you just believe somehow you'll get there, which kind of gets to the passion point.
 

It's stunning to me what kind of an impact even one person can have if they have the right passion, perspective and are able to align the interest of a great team.
 

Most of the people who had PCs did not have modems and could not use those PCs as communicating devices. They really were using them for spreadsheets or word processing or storing recipes or playing games or what have you.
 


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