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35 of 38 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The "ultimate field guide to breakthrough success in business and in life", October 4, 2010
This review is from: The Innovation Secrets of Steve Jobs: Insanely Different Principles for Breakthrough Success (Hardcover)
Actually, what Carmine Gallo examines with both rigor and eloquence are no longer "secrets," nor are they insights of proprietary significance to Steve Jobs. On Pages 10-11, Gallo identifies and briefly discusses the seven principles in his book. For example, #1: "Do What You Love," a portion of Teresa Amabile's admonition expressed in an article that appeared in Harvard Business Review, "do what you love and love what you do" (1993); as for #3, "Kick-Start Your Brain," Doug Hall wrote a book, Jump Start Your Business Brain, that was published in 2001 and he claimed no authorship of that admonition.

My point is, the value of Gallo's book is not based on any the head-snapping revelations it provides; rather, on the analysis he offers of a truly unique person who co-founded a truly unique organization, and who then established and nourished a culture within which innovative thinking continues to produce, in Jobs's familiar words, "insanely great ideas." Ironically, it is possible but unlikely that Jobs and Apple would have succeeded to the extent they later did were it not for the "insanely great ideas" that he and Steve Wozniak encountered during a visit to Xerox PARC in 1979. Long ago, Thomas Edison observed, "Vision without execution is hallucination." An "insanely great" idea will not achieve "insanely great" breakthrough success without "insanely great" execution.

I also presume to assert that, with all due respect to Jobs, credit for the extraordinary success that Apple has achieved thus far must be shared by hundreds (if not thousands) of people who have been or are now centrally involved at every management level and in all areas of operations. It comes as no a surprise what the principles are that have driven Jobs but they have also served as also the values of the company's culture. Gallo devotes a separate chapter to each of these principles/core values -- citing hundreds sources and real-world examples - that reveal their impact on what is done and how it is done throughout the entire Apple organization. He concludes each of Chapters 2-15 with three "iLessons" that emphasis key points in the material just covered. For example, here are two sets:

First, Chapter 6, Seek Out New Experiences

1. Use analogies or metaphors to think about a problem. By finding the similarities between two things that are unalike, your brain makes new and sometimes profound connections.

2. Leave your comfort zone from time to time. Doing so is critical for the creative process to thrive.

3. Don't live in fear of the new. Embrace change. Embrace diversity of opinion and experience.

Next, Chapter 14, The World's Greatest Corporate Storyteller

1. Tell your story early and often. Make communication a cornerstone of your brand every day.

2. Make your brand story consistent across all platforms: presentations, website, advertising, marketing materials, social media.

3. Think differently about presentation style. Study Steve Jobs, read design books, and pay attention to awe-inspiring presentations and what makes them different from the average PowerPoint show. Everyone has room to raise the bar on delivering presentations, but rising to the challenge requires a dedicated commitment to improve and an open mind.

Note: In this same chapter (i.e. #14), Gallo also identifies and discusses "Three Keys to Communicating Value" and "Seven Guidelines for Selling Your Ideas the Steve Jobs Way." Of course, potentially valuable as this and other material throughout the book may be, it remains for those to read it to summon or develop the skills required to put it to effective use.

I also recommend Gallo's The Presentation Secrets of Steve Jobs: How to Be Insanely Great in Front of Any Audience, Alan Deutschman's The Second Coming of Steve Jobs, Leander Kahney's Inside Steve's Brain, Expanded Edition.
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Showing 1-4 of 4 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Oct 6, 2010 7:56:03 AM PDT
Thanks, for another fine review, Robert Morris. Gotta get me this one. (Stop, I'll go broke on your recommendations). As an advisor to 'captains of industry' yourself, I know some of these maxims YOU could have written. My favorite among those you singled out?

"Don't live in fear of the new. Embrace change. Embrace diversity of opinion and experience."

From a dinosaur in the frozen North -- Mark B.

Posted on Oct 14, 2010 5:01:52 AM PDT
Alan says:
The occasional extreme political views expressed in this book give me pause. I was willing to give Jobs a pass on the first book, for the admiring references to Al Gore and global warming. But in this book, from the introduction, the author quotes Jobs: "It was one of the first times I started thinking that maybe Thomas Edison did a lot more to improve the world than Karl Marx and Neem Carolie Baba put together." Really? It makes me feel a little bit dirty having a book on my shelf containing that statement.

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 14, 2010 12:24:39 PM PDT
Thank you for sharing your thoughts. As a reviewer, my task is to evaluate the quality of what I review (e.g. Gallo's book about Jobs) rather make moral judgments about its subject (e.g. Jobs's opinion of Edison re Karl Marx and Neem Carolie Baba). For example, had I attended one of the rallies at which Adolph Hitler spoke, I would have given him Five Stars for the impact of his presentation on the crowd and One Star for content. (I have read the texts as well as viewed the films.) My rating of his performance would thus be Three Stars.

Changing the subject now, did you learn anything of significant value with regard to how Jobs and his associates attempt to produce "insanely great ideas" so that Apple can improve human experience with "insanely great products"?

In reply to an earlier post on Oct 14, 2010 1:29:45 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Oct 14, 2010 1:30:29 PM PDT
Alan says:
No problem. I really had in mind the prospective buyer of the book rather than the writer of the review when I made my comment. Someone might want to know that sort of thing when considering a purchase.

I thought your review was fine.
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Review Details

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Reviewer

Robert Morris
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 100 REVIEWER)    (HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)   

Location: Dallas, Texas

Top Reviewer Ranking: 96