Some thoughts on the book “Becoming Steve Jobs”

I’m 2/3 through the book and it’s one of the best books I’ve read lately. There are a lot of good stories and the ought provoking moments throughout the book. 

In the chapter around the Apple store opening planning, Steve insisted on providing a visual appealing and truly informative experience in the signature Apple stores despite opposition from various parties. Although the decision to open Apple stores seems obvious when looking in hindsight, the opposite parties actually had very solid reasoning based on the sales decline seen across the consumer electronic device retail chains. We all know what happened afterwards. The Apple stores became the most successful retail store in the world in terms of sales per square feet. 

Something struck me when I read this. A lot of times we predict future success based on how others are doing. It is a good indicator but true success only lands on few people though a lot more share the same ideas and start out in a similar fashion. Why? Only few people are willing to think through really hard and don’t mind the tedious and lengthy process in between to make things look great.

 When your services or products are truly great, people are willing to pay a premium price. That’s the confidence and motivation we need to be good at work. 

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Challenges bring opportunities

There have been some big changes at work recently. I started to feel stressed whenever thinking about the challenges and uncertainties I’m about to face. 

I know I have to stay positive and have faith in myself as confidence and assertiveness are two of the most important traits people look for in a team lead, and you will be mistaken as weak and soft if others sense your hesitation.

I’m not a quitter so I will try to view this as an opportunity to test my potential and figure out whether this is truly something I wanted to continue doing for the next few years. 

People could grow at an accelerate speed whether from the failure or success in these difficult situations. I have to believe I’m going to be able to fare well and push myself forward to the next stage.

You have to pick the right ball to hit

One of the common challenges in today’s world full of distractions is how people can easily get caught up in the multitasking trap and end up feeling busy yet unsatistied. Research has proved that only a tiny percentage of population can truly handle multitasking. Due to how the human brain functions, we are innately not good with multitasking if we need to produce high-quality results. 

The simple solution is to let go of things that are not impactful in the long run and focus on only the few things that matter and devote all your energy and attention to excel in them. 

I thought of that while I was practicing tennis. If you are like me who cannot hit all the balls nice and well, pick the balls that you can ace a strong shot and hit them hard!