Steve Jobs is considered the biggest inventor, entrepreneur and marketer of our times. Besides his amazing career of ample ups and downs, Job’s story is filled with a lot of gradation and uncertainty. Most of us know Steve Jobs based on his straightforward business success, which involves starting a company named Apple in a garage, creation of Pixar and his exit and his journey to become the CEO of Apple etc. This may explain his genius, but was Jobs as clean as his image may reveal? A man is truly successful when he has been as successful as Jobs; he has so many laurels to his name. He has been the master of designing products that have changed our lives forever. But once you become great, you have critics that will dig down deep to tarnish your image. Such is the case with Steve Jobs; here to present a critical take on Jobs’ life, we have listed 5 harsh truths about Jobs that may dent his iconic image in your mind.
Steve Jobs was known to be arrogant and short tempered. One of the biggest drawbacks seen in his professional life was his uncanny habit of firing employees without notice. There are some notable instances to justify this. Once a Pixar employee pleaded that employees be given a week’s notice – Jobs replied in an Okay and said “the notice is retroactive from two weeks ago”.
All of us have been through some grueling interviews, we understand that interviewers can be harsh and so we go prepared for the worse. But there was never a chance you could be prepared for a Jobs interview. Jobs once steamed onto a potential Apple employee if he was a virgin. Stammering the interviewer replied no and Jobs went higher in tone saying “You’re still a virgin, You still think you are not.” There are many such instances where potential employees have had hard time facing the Steve furry in the interview for Apple.
Big people make generous contributions to charities for two primary reasons, to become great in public eye and two to create awareness about causes they are contributing to. Steve Jobs was a man worth billions, but he kept himself away for philanthropy. He did not attach himself with any big donations. As Apple’s CEO, Jobs put a hold on all charity donations. Then he said “wait until we are profitable”, towards the end of his life, Apple was closing on being a billion dollar company but still no corporate philanthropy. Keeping way from charity and helping with all his dollars for a cause, maybe reasons to look down upon Jobs, but in real sense of things Jobs has been one of the biggest philanthropists of his time. He put in all his energy into creating immaculate products that have improved lives of millions around the globe.
Steve has had one of the most troubled childhoods possible, perhaps a reason he never thought he had to care for his child. Jobs didn’t consider imparting paternity for a very long time to his first daughter Lisa. The condition was such that Lisa and her mother had to live on welfare for years. Jobs denied fatherhood so strongly, that he went onto swear in a court document that he was actually infertile and sterile, and was thus incapable of physically procreating a child. This was actually wrong, Jobs acknowledged and came close to his daughter. He then paid for his daughter’s child support.
Jonathan Ive, Apple’s chief industrial designer and one among Jobs closest friends may have never outrightly spoken of Steve Jobs stealing his ideas, but he has gone on to inform that Jobs took undue credit for ideas of others – especially his own. Ive portrayed as artist with sensitive temperament in the biography of Jobs by Walter Isaacson, says he did get upset when Jobs went on to take credit for his (Ive) designs on grand stages and when people outside Apple considered Jobs as the Apple’s sole idea man. In addition to some claims of stealing ideas, Jobs was criticized by many for patenting any and everything. Jobs on this went on to tell New York Times that after Apple was fined $100 million for creating the iPod he vowed to patent everything Apple invented.