His company was built on ruthless business decisions and staunch perfectionism. Yet, this level of success, at least for Jobs, came with some skeletons.
'Small Fry' tells it like it is, and points out some important reminders for us all.
So it comes as no surprise that when his own daughter, Lisa Brennan-Jobs, wrote the scathing memoir Small Fry, which comes out September 4th, chronicling much of their life together, she called him out on some of his unsavory actions.
The book critiques her father while also forgiving him, and shows readers her ways of seeing the lessons behind his seemingly unscrupulous behavior.
Be in the business of relationships, and business will boom.
However, in the wake of women in the workforce (such as Lisa) speaking out recently about the poor discriminatory behaviors of their coworkers and bosses, this comes at a time when we can all take a moment to reflect on our relationships in business.
Any time someone works closely with you they are going to see more than just your happy personality. Sometimes, they will find you stressed, overworked, afraid, or upset when a project goes wrong. It's important to remember that's all part of the process.
However, the way you handle yourself and your actions is what they will remember most.
It is okay to have emotions, but don't belittle others.
At some point, we can all be a little short with our coworkers. Sleepless nights, sickness, and tight deadlines can put even the most upbeat and positive people on edge.
Still, you should take time to reconnect with colleagues and make amends.
Most people will be able to quickly forgive you for being mad about a major work fiasco, especially one that is outside of your control. Regardless, you can still control your emotions--so make sure you let people close to you know you weren't upset with them, but upset with the situation.
I remember being in a conference room at a previous job and the CIO who was having a bad day, belittled every person who spoke during the meeting. From that point on, everyone stopped respecting him and he eventually got fired by the CFO. Even though he was a very senior leader, he wasn't above everyone else.
Don't stop there, work on controlling your temper, or feelings.
Again, getting upset every once in a while is pretty normal, and while many people don't normally raise their voice or get upset--they are few and far between in stressful, competitive industries. So, in order to learn from Steve Jobs' mistakes, it's important that if something becomes a problem, you learn to control yourself.
Once I was a little short with a colleague before leaving the office late at night. The next day, after thinking about it on the drive home the night before, I stopped and got their favorite Starbucks latte, which was waiting on their desk for them when they arrived. I used this as a reminder to think before speaking!
Sometimes, a little conscious effort is all you need to keep your emotions in check.
Don't work yourself out of a family.
When you get to retirement age, don't be like Steve Jobs who told Lisa that she "smelled like a toilet" on his deathbed. Instead, make sure your work life didn't cost you your family life.
Because at the end of his life, Siri probably wasn't much company to Steve Jobs, at least not as much as Lisa could have been.
It's easy to be at work through your children's younger years and then breeze through life with regrets. If we can learn anything from Lisa's new book, and her father's infamous treatment of others, it's that we only have so much time to live our lives.
Be a safe confidant for colleagues.
One of the wisest things you can do in your company is to be a safety zone for anyone who needs to talk. Mental health is a serious issue, especially in the workplace. Being there for your coworkers is one of the biggest steps towards creating a company culture that is open, accepting, highly creative, and productive.
The best part is that it costs you absolutely nothing.