Steve Jobs (Walter Isaacson) – Review
Regardless of how you feel about Apple, whether you value Apple’s business policies and products more or less or what you think about the often high prices of the products, this book teaches a lot about innovation, focus, perseverance, and fighting spirit pay off in the end. It’s probably the most exciting and instructive biography I’ve ever read.
Steve’s great mission was to leave a mark in the universe. All of his actions were tailored to their mission, regardless of how they were received. It was what fueled Steve Jobs’ passion and made him passionate about his job. He was a dominant man who wanted to rule everything. In general, he was able to spread that passion to his employees by getting them to contribute their best version to revolutionize the world and make something great out of creating the products.
Everything should be as simple as possible. Our world today is complex enough. Steve didn’t think about innovation itself, but about excellence and making great products that people enjoy looking at and touching. He requested that the product be made in the simplest possible way to make sure everyone knew its functions. This made Apple the most innovative company in the technology industry and constantly brought innovations such as the iMac or the iPhone with them that were suitable for the mass market.
Steve also believed that people don’t know what they want until they are shown. And he was damn right about that.
In fact, Apple never really invented anything. They kind of stole other ideas from many other companies and put them together into one simple, beautiful, and perfect piece. This is true innovation and by no means a bad thing. Your own innovative strength is only as important as the ability to bring different elements together. Whether design and technology or hardware and software, sometimes you need one, combining ability to bring together the right people, skills, and solutions in order to stand out from the rest and to be successful.
Steve Jobs left Apple in 1985 and returned 11 years later in 1996. He returned as a consultant to revive an almost bankrupt company. And it didn’t take long to implement profound changes and become CEO again. Several projects were canceled, several employees made redundant, the product line was reduced to only 4 compared to the 40 before. All of this is geared towards simplicity. This has achieved a lot of success as the iMac is considered the best-selling computer of all time.
All you have to do is choose a handful of tasks and focus on them. Everything else does not matter.
Steve drove his employees crazy for the relentless pursuit of excellence, everything was thought to the smallest detail. After all, this is one of his most important legacies to Apple. For Steve, the design directly reflects the success and acceptance of the product. Both the design of the product and its packaging had the same meaning. In addition, a single draft was presented and discussed several times. He even went so far as to optimize the design of internal components of devices, although nobody gets to see them and he consciously built the products so that they were difficult or impossible to open and remodel because he didn’t like it when someone tinkered with his devices and maybe ruined the design.
Apple first worked out the design and then looked for a solution to bring the hardware into the housing of the device. This turned out to be a great challenge at times and was exactly the opposite of what the competition did, but it was worth it.
All the successes that Steve achieved were only possible thanks to his team. He’s always made great partnerships and brought important people to his business. One of the most important of these was the designer Jonathan Ive, who always worked directly with Jobs and was above the hardware engineers in the company. He’s always made it a point to have a small team, to recruit the best, and to encourage people to do what they want and give their opinion right in your face. It was very important to him that his team members weren’t the kind of people who would always say “Yes”.
Steve is a person who tightly controls all processes in a perfectionist way.
He keeps control of everything to create the best experience for the user. One of the measures taken was not to accept any outside partners and no deep modifications to their creations. This meant not just making hardware and software into a closed ecosystem, but also controlling what could be done with the actual products once purchased.
Those were just a few of the highlights of the book and I hope you learned something and found interest in reading the whole book. If you’ve already read it, feel free to comment on what excited you most about Steve’s life.