Lost Steve Jobs Interview Tapes Found

Longtime tech journalist Brent Schlender recently did some spring cleaning and came across several tapes with interviews he conducted with late Apple founder Steve Jobs. Spanning 1991 to 2004, the tapes cover a wide variety of topics. The most interesting quotes are Jobs’ thoughts on his time at Next and Pixar, which clearly changed him and helped make his second run at Apple so incredible. One of the funniest and most poignant quotes was Jobs’ thoughts on how The Beatles are a great example of executive management. Check it out.

Jobs told Schlender:

My model of management is the Beatles. The reason I say that is because each of the key people in the Beatles kept the others from going off in the directions of their bad tendencies.

They sort of kept each other in check. And then when they split up, they never did anything as good. It was the chemistry of a small group of people, and that chemistry was greater than the sum of the parts. And so John kept Paul from being a teenybopper and Paul kept John from drifting out into the cosmos, and it was magic. And George, in the end, I think provided a tremendous amount of soul to the group. I don’t know what Ringo did.

That’s the chemistry [at Pixar] between Ed [Catmull] and John [Lasseter] and myself. It’s worked pretty doggone well. We talk about things a lot, and sometimes one of us will want to do something that’s really stupid, or maybe not stupid but…oh, I don’t know…maybe not the wisest thing in the long run for the studio. And, you know, at least one of the other two will say, “Hey, you know, I think there’s a better way to do that.” So we’ll all slow down and think it through, and we usually come up with a much better way.

That line about Ringo killed me (though I think he’s actually underrated as a drummer).

Schlender has an article about Jobs’ “wilderness years” at Next and Pixar here. For a list of quotes from the interview tapes, check out this story. It’s really fascinating stuff that should give you more insight on the late, great Steve Jobs.

[Via: Fast Company]

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