Erwin's Reviews > iCon: Steve Jobs, the Greatest Second Act in the History of Business

iCon by Jeffrey S. Young
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's review
Apr 16, 2011

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This book was OK, though if you want to find out more about him, there are certainly better books. Most of this was covered in the TV series "Pirates of Silicon Valley", which was based on the book Fire in the Valley: The Making of The Personal Computer.

There are a few important lessons from Steve's life than can be applied to anyone in business:
1. Persistence. After getting booted from Apple, building NextStep into a very innovative but unprofitable venture, and rounds of layoffs at Pixar, Steve was very close to failure - and would have walked away with nothing. No legacy. No prestige. No power. And most importantly, no way to contribute to the world - no way to build cool stuff. Steve had some good luck come his way, and managed to hang on, take Pixar public and sell NextStep to Apple --- which in a way, was like Steve's old pirate "Macintosh" division taking over the entire company.
2. Ownership. Steve used funds from his sold Apple stock to purchase Pixar from George Lucas, and to launch NextStep. Steven maintained ownership over both. When Pixar went public, Steve got paid. Next, when Steve sold NextStep to Apple, he made sure his investors got paid back in cash, and himself was paid in Apple stock. Steve does not rely on a paycheck - he just takes a $1/year salary from Apple, and relies on his ownership of shares of Apple.
3. Maturity. Prior to settling down, finding his partner in life, and having their 3 children, Steve wasn't very calm, very reasonable. The fact that he's been through so many failures and now working on the ultimate startup (his kids) he's matured into an absolutely excellent businessman.

Steve is definitely a good role model. Someone businessmen will certainly strive to emulate for generations.
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