After reading about Steve Jobs in Ed Catmull’s, Creativity Inc. and Bob Iger’s, The Ride of a Lifetime, I knew this was a man that I wanted to learn more about. I won’t lie…I was intrigued by this biography but didn’t think I would be able to finish it. Since Jobs was the face of the Apple empire, I figured this book would be full of technological terms I didn’t understand and I would get bored. I was also worried that this book would just be a detailed list of accomplishments that I wouldn’t be able to relate to.
I was wrong. This is the best biography I have ever read. Isaacson writes beautifully and Jobs has an incredibly interesting life story and happens to be quite the character. I knew Jobs was a smart businessman who was known to be an asshole, but he is truly one of the most influential people of our time. Maybe it is too soon to say, but I have no doubt in believing that in the future, he will be talked about as the Einstein of our generation.
I highly recommend this book to anyone who wants to learn more about the history of Apple or just learn about a man who had a vision to change the world. I guarantee you will learn something new and if you’re as emotional as I am, you’ll be sobbing by the end of the book too.
My Book Notes
- Apple is a cross between liberal arts and technology
- It is crucial to innovation to have designers work with engineers instead of having separate development departments
- Setting up an office space that encourages collaboration promotes innovation
- Jobs was extremely hard on his workers but he was also able to use his “reality distortion” to make people do things that they thought were impossible
- Get rid of the “B Players” and build a team that is all “A Players”, “A Players” work best with other “A Players”
- Be honest and always strive for perfection
- Passion is something to invest in, it is also something that people follow
- Doing the impossible is often possible
- Having a closed system allows you to completely control the customer experience from the product to the store they buy it in
- Making money shouldn’t be the motivation, making a great product should be the motivation
- Simplicity is key
- Market research is worthless..if you are doing it right you are giving the consumer the product they didn’t even know they needed
- Jobs had a middle-class upbringing and was able to create the largest technology empire with no particular talent or advantage other than he was passionate, driven, had a vision to change the world, didn’t accept anything less than perfect, and didn’t listen to the word “no”
- What a product looks like on the inside is just as important as the outside; people judge a product by the cover – how you package your product is all part of the customer experience
- Curiosity is the best way to learn
- You can design a great product, but if you don’t know how to operationally execute and market the product, it is essentially worthless
- “The people who think they are crazy enough to change the world are the ones who do”