HBR: The Real Leadership Lessons of Steve Jobs

In 2011 Walter Isaacson wrote a superbly great book on Steve Jobs. Now, he’s bakc with a Harvard Business Review article with special focus on Steve Jobs’ leadership style. Read it.

We’ll be working to update on of our keynote speeches based on this most recent article.

While much has been said about Jobs’ leadership style, few writers has ever had the insight and access Walter Isaacson has had. This makes his article “The Real Leadership Lessons of Steve Jobs” truly stand out.

Early in the article Isaacson writes, “So I think the real lessons from Steve Jobs have to be drawn from looking at what he actually accomplished. I once asked him what he thought was his most important creation, thinking he would answer the iPad or the Macintosh. Instead he said it was Apple the company. Making an enduring company, he said, was both far harder and more important than making a great product. How did he do it? Business schools will be studying that question a century from now.”

This, of course, is the BIG question executives and students worldwide should be asking themselves. What can we learn from Apple? If Apple has managed to disrupt several industries, which ones could we disrupt?

Isaacson sums up his key lessons in these 14 points. Enjoy the entire article here.

1) Focus;
2) Simplify;
3) Take Responsibility End to End;
4) When Behind, Leapfrog;
5) Put Products Before Profits;
6) Don’t Be a Slave To Focus Groups;
7) Bend Reality;
8) Impute;
9) Push for Perfection;
10) Tolerate Only “A” Players;
11) Engage Face-to-Face;
12) Know Both the Big Picture and the Details;
13) Combine the Humanities with the Sciences;
14) Stay Hungry, Stay Foolish.

This week’s Economist has a truly brilliant piece on Apple’s booming share price. It makes a great supplement to the HBR leadership article.

(source: iRational?, the Economist,


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