Steve Jobs, the co-founder of Apple Inc. famed for his marketing skills, had a few kind words said on his behalf by arch-rival Bill Gates.
Jobs, who died from pancreatic cancer in 2011, and Gates have a long history of animosity. It was inflamed by their being stern competitors in the then burgeoning tech industry of the 1980s.
Gates once slammed Jobs as “fundamentally odd,” and “weirdly flawed as a human being.” Jobs returned the favor, blasting Gates as “… basically unimaginative and has never invented anything, which is why I think he’s more comfortable now in philanthropy than technology.”
Despite their seeming dislike of each other, Gates has, in the past, admitted to Jobs having qualities demanded of a leader. In 2013, Gates was quoted as saying the way Jobs “does things is just different and I think it’s magical.
The co-founder of Microsoft Corporation has spoken about how Jobs gets his people at Apple all worked up about their jobs despite his abrasive personality. Gates noted Jobs was a master at “casting spells” to keep Apple employees motivated; as well as working long hours.
Gates also candidly remarked on Sunday in an interview with CNN that it’s really easy to imitate “the bad parts of Steve.” However, Gates said he has “yet to meet any person who in terms of picking talent, hyper-motivating that talent,” that could match Jobs.
“He brought some incredibly positive things along with that toughness,” said Gates of his late foe.
But Jobs’ combative style isn’t something to be emulated, believes Gates.
Gates admitted Jobs’ style of management is an example of “don’t do this at home.” He contrasted his management style; which he also admitted was also tough, with that of Jobs.
In an indirect reference to Jobs and his rudeness, Gates pointed out that “no one ever said that when I went out to talk to the press or customers, that I was rude or abrupt or commanding.”
Gates went on to say he never considered adopting Job’s brutal style of leaderhip.
“I was like a minor wizard because he would be casting spells, and I would see people mesmerized, but because I’m a minor wizard, the spells don’t work on me,” said Gates.
Gates described Jobs as a “singular case” whose existence was necessary for the survival of Apple; which is now one of the most valuable companies in the world.