Nobody’s perfect. But some people are very interesting. I’d have said both of those things to you about Steve Jobs a long time ago but I’d also have added that I wasn’t that fussed. I’m not sure that I am now but if nothing else, that man got stuff done. You can well argue that it was all the people around him, but he got many or most of them and he got them doing the things they got done. He managed them, at the very least, and reportedly inspired them too.
Actual inspiration. It does happen. I have been inspired by people. I had a natter this afternoon that has set me off writing something I Do Not Have Time For So There but I will do.
But I’ve also had just the smallest, tiniest taste of what it is like managing people and I don’t want to go there again. I think I’ll have to, but I also think this time I’ll get to pick the people. Wish me luck.
Becoming Steve Jobs is a biography with a purpose: while it charts the Apple guy’s life, it does so to examine very specifically how he began as this wild child and ended as this venerated industry genius. Not how he got his ideas, so to speak, not what he did with his talents or his time, but how he worked with others and became great at it.
Or at least mostly great. Usually great.
The book is not the hymn of praise to Jobs that you might expect after Apple staff keep talking about it: instead it is very clear about his reprehensible traits.
Some of those you know, especially if you made it through the boring official biog, but there is plenty that is new in this book and I want to cautiously recommend it. If you’re an Apple fan, go get it, you were going to anyway. If you’re not, then go to Amazon and have a look at the Peek Inside stuff, see what you think. There is much to enjoy here and much to learn from, too.
Though I did just say the official biog is boring. If that’s down one end of the scale of biographies, there is one that is at the other end – it’s much better than either the official Jobs biog and it’s better than this new one. Unfortunately, it’s not about Jobs. It’s Leander Kahney’s Jony Ive: The Genius Behind Apple’s Greatest Products.
Such a good read.