What I learned from Steve Jobs


I just finished “Steve Jobs” by Walter Isaacson. Here’s 20 things I highlighted. Some apply to preaching. Some apply to pastoring. Some are just interesting:

1. Apple had a 3rd partner, Ron Wayne, who got cold feet after 11 days. He was paid a buyout of $2,300. Had he stayed, his share would be worth $2.6 billion.

2. Picasso had a saying – “Good artists copy, great artists steal” – we have been shameless about stealing great ideas.

3. In the annals of innovation, new ideas are only part of the equation. Execution is just as important.

4. The empowering force of naïveté – “Because I didn’t know it couldn’t be done, I was enabled to do it. ”

5. The goal was never to beat the competition, or to make a lot of money. It was to do the greatest thing possible, or even a little greater.

6. Jobs recruiting Pepsi’s Scully – Do you want to spend the rest of your life selling sugared water, or do you want a chance to change the world?

7. Jobs responding to a question about how he did market research for the Mac – “Did Alexander Graham Bell do any market research before he invented the telephone?”

8. The best & most innovative products don’t always win.

9. A colleague on how he dealt with Jobs abrasive personality “I used to be an angry man myself. I’m a recovering assaholic. So I could recognize that in Steve.”

10. What prepared him for the success he would have in Act 3 was not his ouster from Act 1 @ Apple, but his brilliant failures in Act 2.

11. It takes a lot of hard work to make something simple.

12. You have to deeply understand the essence of a product in order to be able to get rid of the parts that are not essential.

13. Gretzky – “Skate where the puck is going, not where it has been.”

14. Jobs – “What are the 10 things we should be doing next?…We can only do 3″

15. The mark of an innovative company is not that it comes up with new ideas first, but also that it knows how to leapfrog when it finds itself behind.

16. Some people say, “Give the customers what they want.” but that’s not my approach. Our job is to figure out what they’re going to want before they do.

17. Henry Ford – “If I’d asked customers what the wanted, they’d have told me, ‘a faster horse’.”

18. People don’t know what they want until you show it to them. That’s why I never rely on market research. Our task is to read things that are not yet on the page.

19. You build a company that will stand for something a generation or two from now. That’s what Walt Disney did, and HP, and the people that built Intel. They created a company to last, not just to make money. That’s what I want Apple to be.

20. Here’s to the crazy ones. The misfits. The rebels. The troublemakers. The round pegs in square holes. The ones who see things differently. They’re not fond of rules. And they have no respect for the status quo. You can quote them, glorify or vilify them. About the only thing you can’t do is ignore them. Because they change things. They push the human race forward. And while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius. Because the people crazy enough to think they can change the world are the ones who do.

So, what about you?

What got your attention?

Why I wrote the book and why you should buy one

My new book, Ir-rev-rend: Christianity without the pretense, faith without the facade releases today.

I thought I’d take a minute and tell you why I wrote it and maybe give you some reasons why you should buy the book.

If you want to skip the explanation and get right to the ordering, you can do so by clicking here: Ir-rev-rend: Christianity Without the Pretense. Faith Without the Façade


Busted: My seat mate from Ir-rev-rend finds me

When I posted the preview chapter from my soon to be released book, Ir-rev-rend, I didn’t expect the subject of the story to suddenly show up in the comment section. After all, I’d only met him one time, and that on a brief airplane flight. But, there he was. As big as life. Commenting on the accuracy of our encounter. Fortunately, according to him, I got the story right. The only thing I missed was the spelling of his name. Apparently that wasn’t the only misspelling in the chapter. :-)

I thought you’d be interested in hearing his take on the story.

Well it’s me, I’m the chiropractor you met on the plane. I can’t remember exactly how long ago, I think a couple of years or so. Any way a friend Sean Tabor told me about your book tonight. I decided to read your preface and wanted to comment on what I think gave me power to be me. It’s simple with preachers like Fred Richards, Robert Spadley, truth is I was blessed to have some of Charlestons finest teach me Gods word. Boy does Gods word make a difference especially when you’re forced to believe it. I mean trials can make you or break you depending on how you choose to respond. I was told in Bible school that if you respond to trials in faith , they will make you better. If you respond to trials in fear doubt and unbief, they can make you bitter. I think life can be full of trials, it’s kind of a serendipity experience that builds your character along the way. Well any way I wanted to tell you my secret. It’s not only listening to great preaching it’s listening to Gods word. I know it sounds cliche, who cares there are plenty of versions to listen to. It works, listening to Gods word changed my life. I wish I could say I didn’t have feet of clay, but I do. Many times I honestly listen to God’s word even after knowing I just meditated on something I should not have. Guess what his word cleanses to the utter most. I’m also amazed with Gods word that I listen to the Word during my work hours over the speaker system. I want all of my patients and staff to hear Gods precious word. I go home at night and turn on my iPhone and listen to Gods word when I sleep I listen to Gods word. I currently attempt to hear the word from Genisis to Revelations about every three to four weeks and repeat the process often. I feel that Gods word is the most important thing I can give my self to. One other thing I want to say, I am very happy to say that my children are doing well. My youngest Hannah, is sixteen, she attends Fair hill Christian school in Fairbanks Alaska, my next oldest child is a senior at hutcheson high also in Fairbanks. My next oldest just graduated high school and attends Lee university in Cleveland Tn. My oldest is attending Southeastern University in Lakeland Fla. I told you this because I see Gods faithfulness and answered prayers. God is amazing. I love him and want to spend the rest of my life serving my flock at Carlile Chiropractic. I am pleased that you refer to me in your book. I’m so glad that after so many years God kindly allows me be re instated back to the lives I left over thirty years ago. I want to thank Fred Richards and Rob Spradley, Jim Kelly, Jeff Stockford, and Sue Nesmith for being there in YouthQuake. Gods word, Gods people, Gods Spirit what a combo. Now that’s a hardy meal that feeds this Charlestonian Alaska boy. I love you, thanks for sharing and allowing me to share on the plane. God bless you if you want to keep in touch I would love to take you into the wilderness. If you want pictures let me know. Thank you Dr Jon Carlile

A little later Jon’s brother Ed left a comment:

Greg, your description of Jon and his enthusiasm was perfect. He is so inspirational even in the worst of times. He would always say, “I just want to stay in God’s will”. It is because we were raised in a good Christian home. We were members of Northwoods Assembly when Sea Coast was started. So we had the good training and direction of Pastor Richards. In fact, my wife and I were married there by Doug Cotton. When Jon totally committed his life to God, he never looked back.
He has amazed me in his accomplishments, which haven’t come easy. When he was at Life Chiropractic University in Atlanta, he didn’t have tuition for his sophomore year. He was insistent that God would provide a way. I’ll never forget the day he called me in Charleston to say he was on the Rugby team. John had never played any high school sport and he really didn’t know what Rugby was. But that’s where enthusiasm, following God’s will and 285 pounds of Jon Carlile can do. I asked him if he ever scored. He said they just put me in to rough people up. Either God is a big sports fan or He wanted Jon to get that sophomore year scholarship.
I’m glad you had an opportunity to meet Jon and share his story.
I’m proud to be his brother.

As if that wasn’t enough, there was at least one more interesting comment. You may remember me referring to a girl I sat next too on an earlier flight. She was nervous about flying and releaved to be sitting next to her pastor, not realizing that he was piously praying for an empty seat. Her name is Brenda and she recognized herself:

To be fair, once the adrenaline wore off and the plane took off I tried not to talk to you because I figured you get tired of being a celebrity. But geesh you just kept yammering on and on. I said a couple of prayers of my own. I was sorry to see the editor changed the original text from “an intelligent well put together (and most likely very funny) woman” and just went with “young woman”.
I get it. You needed the space.

Great chapter. You had me at “no one should be up at that hour.”

Thank you for the times you have been a part of my story. I’m sure that sentiment could be repeated sincerely all over the world! I look forward to the rest of the stories.

Honestly, I tried to disguise the identity of some of the characters in other stories a little better than these. I changed names and facts to protect the innocent (and sometimes the guilty). But I’m kind of glad that Jon identified himself. He’s the kind of hero that everyone should get to meet at least once in your life.

I’m glad I got my chance, I hope you enjoyed reading about it.