Here are some thoughts on success by Steve Jobs, prompted by a question asked at the D5 conference where he had a joint interview with Bill Gates. The whole thing is worth watching, or listening to, or reading the transcripts but this is relevant if you work in this business.
First, you have to have a lot of passion for what you’re doing. And the reason is that you have to work so hard that if you don’t, any rational person would give up. And you have to do it over an extended period of time. So if you don’t love it, you’re not really have fun doing it, you don’t really love it, you’re going to give up. And that’s what happens to most people, actually, if you really look at the ones that ended up being “successful” in the eyes of society and the ones who didn’t, the ones that are successful oftentimes loved what they did so they could persevere when it got really tough. And the ones that didn’t love it quit, because they’re sane – who would want to put up with this stuff if they don’t love it? So it’s a lot of hard work and a lot of worrying, constantly and if you don’t love it you’re going to fail. So you have to love it and you have to have passion, and that’s the high order bit.
The second thing is you have to be a really good talent scout. Because no matter how smart you are, you need a team of great people. And you have to figure out how to size people up fairly quickly, make decisions without knowing people too well, and hire them and see how you do and refine your intuition and be able to build an organization that eventually can just build itself. Because you need great people around you.