Although there are many books out there about Steve Jobs, this one stands out for me because the author Jay Elliot was a Senior VP of Apple and former manager at IBM and Intel. He was working directly with Steve, allowing the unconventional culture to thrive while applying the managerial skills he had gained from working at two other tech companies to keep things from going out of control.
Being a manager he found Steve’s cavalier style of leading a company to be surprisingly effective given what he knew about the benefits of structure and order. But never forget that with Steve there was always order behind the chaos. He mentions that Steve turned down a recruit because he arrived in a suit for the interview, a clear indication that he had not done the research on the “dress code” and for that matter the culture at Apple.
That is what is unique about an Apple insider’s perspective on Steve Jobs, it lays out the system that is not apparent and can sometimes be confusing to an outsider. It shows that even among pirates they follow and respect a code (Pirates of the Caribbean reference).
There is so much in here that takes away the ambiguity of how Apple came to be what it is. As an example did you know that Steve sat in on interviews for 5000+ employees – and yet some startup CEOs are too busy to make time for the 100 odd people they end up recruiting.
I am really surprised that this book is not more well-known – it shares the blueprint to Apple’s success! There is so much in here – by a true insider and management guru in his own right – on one of the greatest companies in the world.
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