Steve Jobs: A book review by Bob Morris

Steve Jobs
Walter Isaacson
Simon & Schuster (2011)

Think differently about Think Different

In my opinion, this is among the most important business biographies ever written. Given the number of other reviews that have already appeared, there really isn’t much left for me to say that has not already been said. However, I thought it might be helpful to those who have not as yet read the book to share my thoughts about the lessons to be learned from what Walter Issacson reveals about Steve Jobs as another calendar year begins.

o Perfection is a journey, not a destination, and it should be pursued intensely in every domain of one’s life
o There are no insignificant details
o Very Good is the enemy of Great
o Great is the enemy of Insanely Grea
o Steal only the best from the best and then make it better

Among the treasures he “borrowed”:

• Make everything as simple as possible…but no simpler (Albert Einstein)
• Vision without execution is hallucination (Thomas Edison)
• Life is either a daring adventure or nothing (Helen Keller)
• The essence of strategy is choosing what not to do (Michael Porter)
• God (or Whatever) is in the details and Less is more (Mies van der Rohe)
• The Devil is in vague generalities (Gustave Flaubert)
• Graphical user interface or GUI (Xerox PARC)

Isacsson visited Jobs just before he died. They discussed death and the possibility of an afterlife. “l like to think that something survives after you die.” Then he fell silent for a very long time. “But on the other hand, perhaps it’s like an on-off switch,” he said. “Click! And you’re gone. Maybe that’s why I never wanted to put on-off switches on Apple devices.”

 

 

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