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Becoming Steve Jobs

Cover of Becoming Steve Jobs

Becoming Steve Jobs

The Evolution of a Reckless Upstart into a Visionary Leader
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#1 New York Times Bestseller

There have been many books--on a large and small scale--about Steve Jobs, one of the most famous CEOs in history. But this book is different from all the others.


Becoming Steve Jobstakes on and breaks down the existing myth and stereotypes about Steve Jobs. The conventional, one-dimensional view of Jobs is that he was half-genius, half-jerk from youth, an irascible and selfish leader who slighted friends and family alike. Becoming Steve Jobs answers the central question about the life and career of the Apple cofounder and CEO: How did a young man so reckless and arrogant that he was exiled from the company he founded become the most effective visionary business leader of our time, ultimately transforming the daily life of billions of people?

Drawing on incredible and sometimes exclusive access, Schlender and Tetzeli tell a different story of a real human being who wrestled with his failings and learned to maximize his strengths over time. Their rich, compelling narrative is filled with stories never told before from the people who knew Jobs best, and who decided to open up to the authors, including his family, former inner circle executives, and top people at Apple, Pixar and Disney, most notably Tim Cook, Jony Ive, Eddy Cue, Ed Catmull, John Lasseter, Robert Iger and many others. In addition, Brent knew Jobs personally for 25 years and draws upon his many interviews with him, on and off the record, in writing the book. He and Rick humanize the man and explain, rather than simply describe, his behavior. Along the way, the book provides rich context about the technology revolution we all have lived through, and the ways in which Jobs changed our world.

Schlender and Tetzeli make clear that Jobs's astounding success at Apple was far more complicated than simply picking the right products: he became more patient, he learned to trust his inner circle, and discovered the importance of growing the company incrementally rather than only shooting for dazzling game-changing products.

A rich and revealing account that will change the way we view Jobs, Becoming Steve Jobs shows us how one of the most colorful and compelling figures of our times was able to combine his unchanging, relentless passion with a more mature management style to create one of the most valuable and beloved companies on the planet.

From the Hardcover edition.
#1 New York Times Bestseller

There have been many books--on a large and small scale--about Steve Jobs, one of the most famous CEOs in history. But this book is different from all the others.


Becoming Steve Jobstakes on and breaks down the existing myth and stereotypes about Steve Jobs. The conventional, one-dimensional view of Jobs is that he was half-genius, half-jerk from youth, an irascible and selfish leader who slighted friends and family alike. Becoming Steve Jobs answers the central question about the life and career of the Apple cofounder and CEO: How did a young man so reckless and arrogant that he was exiled from the company he founded become the most effective visionary business leader of our time, ultimately transforming the daily life of billions of people?

Drawing on incredible and sometimes exclusive access, Schlender and Tetzeli tell a different story of a real human being who wrestled with his failings and learned to maximize his strengths over time. Their rich, compelling narrative is filled with stories never told before from the people who knew Jobs best, and who decided to open up to the authors, including his family, former inner circle executives, and top people at Apple, Pixar and Disney, most notably Tim Cook, Jony Ive, Eddy Cue, Ed Catmull, John Lasseter, Robert Iger and many others. In addition, Brent knew Jobs personally for 25 years and draws upon his many interviews with him, on and off the record, in writing the book. He and Rick humanize the man and explain, rather than simply describe, his behavior. Along the way, the book provides rich context about the technology revolution we all have lived through, and the ways in which Jobs changed our world.

Schlender and Tetzeli make clear that Jobs's astounding success at Apple was far more complicated than simply picking the right products: he became more patient, he learned to trust his inner circle, and discovered the importance of growing the company incrementally rather than only shooting for dazzling game-changing products.

A rich and revealing account that will change the way we view Jobs, Becoming Steve Jobs shows us how one of the most colorful and compelling figures of our times was able to combine his unchanging, relentless passion with a more mature management style to create one of the most valuable and beloved companies on the planet.

From the Hardcover edition.
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Awards-
About the Author-
  • BRENT SCHLENDER is one of the premiere chroniclers of the personal computer revolution, writing about every major figure and company in the tech industry. He covered Steve Jobs for the Wall Street Journal and Fortune for nearly 25 years.

    RICK TETZELI, executive editor of Fast Company, has covered technology for two decades. He is the former deputy editor of Fortune, and editor of Entertainment Weekly.
Reviews-
  • Publisher's Weekly

    May 4, 2015
    The late Apple CEO changes from brilliant, erratic, insufferable jerk to steady, perspicacious, tolerable jerk in this shrewdly admiring biography. Journalist Schlender and Fast Company editor Tetzeli focus on the years after Jobs's 1985 ouster from Apple and then on his 1997 return to guide the company's resurgence with a string of hit iProducts. They depict a spiritual journey, with Jobs wandering in the wilderness at NeXT Computer, where his confused, tyrannical fiats almost sank the company, and then at Pixar, where he learned the art of not interfering with talented subordinates; he emerged a more patient man with a tempered strategic outlook and an ability to listen to underlings when they screamed back at him. Schlender and Tetzeli's account is unusually intimate thanks to voluminous interviews and Schlender's many personal encounters with Jobs over decades of covering him, and a reverential tone sometimes surfaces—as when Jobs's lieutenant Tim Cook offered Jobs his own liver for a transplant—in this corrective to Walter Isaacson's more jaundiced biography. But the authors are clear-eyed about Jobs's flaws and give lucid, detailed analyses of his maneuverings and product initiatives; theirs is one of the most nuanced and revealing assessments of Jobs's controversial career. Photos. Agent: Kris Dahl, ICM.

  • Marc Andreessen "Steve Jobs is the person who most inspires the new generation of Silicon Valley entrepreneurs. In this deeply-researched book, you'll find the most honest portrait of the real Steve Jobs."
  • John Gruber, Daring Fireball "The book about Steve Jobs that the world deserves. Smart, accurate, informative, insightful and at times, utterly heartbreaking....Becoming Steve Jobs is going to be an essential reference for decades to come."
  • Joe Nocera, The New York Times "What makes their book important is that they contend -- persuasively, I believe -- that . . . [Jobs] was not the same man in his prime that he had been at the beginning of his career. The callow, impetuous, arrogant youth who co-founded Apple was very different from the mature and thoughtful man who returned to his struggling creation and turned it into a company that made breathtaking products while becoming the dominant technology company of our time."
  • Michael Cohen, TidBITS "Becoming Steve Jobs does not absolve the protagonist of his foibles, but shows that his accomplishments were indeed legion."
    –The Economist

    "For a deeply felt account... of the qualities that earned Jobs the abiding respect and love of his closest associates... the Schlender and Tetzeli book is the best that's currently available."
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Becoming Steve Jobs
Becoming Steve Jobs
The Evolution of a Reckless Upstart into a Visionary Leader
Brent Schlender
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