A simple string of words will never adequate to describe a person of such caliber. Not only famous for being an entrepreneur and an astounding businessman, Steve Jobs, will always be remembered as an innovator and an inventor. We knew little about how much this man had to offer and what true genius really is before he was taken away a tad bit too early. Even so, he leaves behind nothing short of a legacy and a long line of accomplishments, which we can certainly learn from. Not only that, but we can also learn from the story of Apple itself and how it raises nearly $260 billion a year as revenue. Want to learn more? Let’s dive right in.
A short backdrop
Now we all probably know if not a lot, most definitely a little about the main man behind the tech giant Apple.
Steve Jobs was raised by adoptive parents in Cupertino, California, located in what is now known as Silicon Valley. Even though he was fascinated by engineering, he always liked to explore his other interests quite profoundly as well. He dropped out of Reed College in Portland, Oregon, took a job at Atari Corporation as a video game designer in early 1974. Later, when he saved enough money, he went for a pilgrimage to India to experience Buddhism. Pretty diverse, right?
In 1974, back in Silicon Valley, Steve Jobs had come back and reconnected with his friend Stephen Wozniak. Wozniak was then working in another company designing his very own computer logic board. After learning about this, Jobs suggested that they go into work together, and that’s exactly what they did after Wozniak’s company rejected his design.
The Apple I, as they called the logic board, was built in the Jobs’s family garage with money they obtained by selling Jobs’s Volkswagen minibus and Wozniak’s programmable calculator. And so the magic begins to unfold.
Apple and his other ventures
The history of Steve Jobs and Apple is not really straightforward. He has had a rocky relationship with the company he helped bring to life. After many successful years of working with and on Apple, Jobs left the company he co-created in 1985. Rumors say that he was ousted or pushed away, and some say he merely voluntarily left.
Whatever may be the case, his next focus was NeXT. NeXT was a tech company Steve Jobs had founded that primarily centered around in higher education and business. In 1986, Jobs took a major interest in a small division of Lucasfilm Ltd. He poured his attention on the development of computer-generated graphics for animated movies, which would eventually lead to him acquiring a company now known as Pixar. And we all know about Pixar, don’t we? Indeed!
Finally, in 1998, Steve Jobs once again crossed paths with his past when Apple bought the NeXT company that Jobs owned and asked him to come back in a leadership role. He was interim CEO from 1997 to 2000, becoming the permanent CEO from that point until his eventual resignation in August of 2011.
What can we learn from him?
Steve Jobs was undoubtedly a good businessman and entrepreneur, but some qualities about him stand out more than those. He was a good leader, and he was an innovator. Job’s remains one of the most iconic images of pop culture, technology, and the merge of these with business. So today, we bring to you some of the key teachings of Steve Jobs concerning good leadership as well as a good businessman.
As an entrepreneur, some things are essential for all companies and owners. But Steve Jobs has some specific teachings and practices that he has seen to implement not only in his business ventures but also in life. We’ve shortened and listed some of them below.
- Don’t have a limited life. “Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma – which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of other’s opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, dare to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.” – Steve Jobs
- Have passion in whatever you do and also be proud of whatever you create. Showing gratitude towards your own creations can help not only yourself but also the business.
- Design for yourself as the customer. “Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice.” – Steve Jobs
- Don’t sell crap. Always think about your consumer or put yourself in the shoes of the consumer and see whether you would be happy with the product. Craft your products around your customers.
- Build a great team and put resources into them.
- Don’t do it for the money. Of course, financial motivators are crucial in any business, but don’t let it be your number on the concern.
- Marketing is about values. Don’t take up controversial marketing tactics or anything that might damage the integrity of your company image.
As a leader, Job’s also had some distinguishable features. He was known to have a high focus on whatever he did. Whether it be business or personal. He had also always taken responsibility from end to end. Knowing when to take control and when to give control was also part of his responsibilities as was taking accountability when needed. He was also known to keep things simple as a leader and not to dwell too much on the textbook teachings of leaders. Furthermore, keeping open lines of communication and face-to-face dialogues between his teams and employees is what helped Job’s really enter his bubble of innovation.
So all in all, a great man from all angles. Sure, some things raise controversy and questions about him, but that right to all businessmen. Steve Job’s will forever be engrained in our minds as the Apple guy and for understandable reasons. His teachings and memories live on, and so does his massive influence on the tech world.
Stay Hungry, Stay Foolish.