Steve Jobs passed away yesterday and in the next days and weeks we’ll be hearing a lot about him. I have followed him from the beginning. One thing I would like to talk about today is his persistence. You’ll probably not hear very much about how many times he failed… and he did fail quite a bit. The thing to remember is he didn’t let failures stop him. He tried something different or tried it a different way.
Nick Schultz from the American Institute writes (and I quote) –
Jobs failed better than anyone else in Silicon Valley, maybe better than anyone in corporate America. By that I mean Jobs did what only the greatest entrepreneurs can do: learn from their failures. I donâ€™t mean learn from their mistakes. I mean learn from their abject, humiliating, bonehead, epic fails.
Jobs (along with Steve Wozniak) brought us the Apple I and Apple II computers, early iterations of which sold in the mere hundreds and were complete failures. Not until the floppy disk was introduced and sufficient RAM added did the Apple II take off as a successful product.
Jobs was the architect of Lisa, introduced in the early 1980s. You remember Lisa, donâ€™t you? Of course you donâ€™t. But this computer â€” which cost tens of millions of dollars to develop â€” was another epic fail. Shortly after Lisa, Apple had a success with its Macintosh computer. But Jobs was out of a job by then, having been tossed aside thanks to the Lisa fiasco.
So if he had stopped at the failure, then we would have never gotten the iPhone, iTunes, the iPad etc. In fact after Lisa he went on to found another company Pixar, maybe you’ve heard of that… or maybe you’ve heard of Toy Story.
In 1996 he returned back to Apple and well the rest is history. You will also hear quite a bit about a commencement address he gave in 2005 to Stanford. I encourage you to watch it. It’s below –
Some things I got out of the speech.
Connecting the Dots
You have to trust that the dots will connect. You can only learn how they connected while looking backward. You should look forward and trust the dots will connect. You won’t always know how things are going to work out until it is done.
Love and Loss
At 30 he was ditched as the CEO of Apple. This actually freed him up to be creative and he started Pixar and other companies during this time. Sometimes life hits you with a brick. Find out what you love what you love to doâ€¦ keep looking andÂ DONâ€™T SETTLE. He also met his wife during this time.
If today were your last day would you do what youâ€™re going to do. Remember that youâ€™re going to die. No one wants to die but we all share this destination. Donâ€™t waste time living someone elseâ€™s life. How poignant is that today.
Stay Hungry â€“ Stay Foolish – my favorite quote of the whole speech – that and don’t waste time living someone else’s life.
So what does all this have to do with tutoring?
1. Don’t Give up.
2. The greatest thing about tutoring is we get to help shape a child’s life and their future. The Encouragement and Help we give them may be the only help and encouragement they’ve ever gotten. Remember this when you’re tutoring a difficult student and are getting ready to pull your hair out.
3. Live each day as if it were your last.
We’ve completed the limited testing for our online tutor guide – you can now order it if you wish. We’ve made it available to you first. You can find details about it at the link below.
Ironically we’ve been talking the past week or so about tutoring with the iPad – you can check the first in the series here –