Looking for thought provoking and inspirational Steve Jobs quotes about success, life and entrepreneurship?
Who is Steve Jobs?
There’s a lot to say about Steve Jobs: controversial, visionary, perfectionist, inventor, genius, and the list goes on. Most of us fell in love with Steve Jobs through the Apple Inc. brand and its innovative products. His never give up attitude is what made me a fan of his.
Jobs went head to head against computer giant IBM when Apple was just a newcomer in the industry. In 1985, he was ousted out of his own company that he co-founded. A decade later, Jobs returned to turn a struggling business into the world’s most innovative – and wealthiest – company.
The Steve Jobs quotes below remind us how inspiring he was and how he didn’t hesitate to take big risks. He bounced back from defeat time and again to become more successful than before. Although many of his methods were unconventional, he knew how to lead others to achieve the “impossible”.
Below are 50+ quotes from Steve Jobs that will inspire you to take risks, think big, and have passion for what you do. These Steve Jobs quotes come from the works of Walter Isaacson, interviews, his famous Stanford University speech, and the Think Different commercial.
Also read these innovation quotes that will motivate you to create.
Famous Steve Jobs Quotes on Time
1. “Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life.” – Steve Jobs
2. “I always thought of myself as a Humanities person as a kid, but I liked electronics…Then I read something that one of my heroes, Edwin Land of Polaroid, said about the importance of people who could stand at the intersection of humanities and sciences, and I decided that’s what I wanted to do.” – Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson
3. “My favorite things in life don’t cost any money. It’s really clear that the most precious resource we all have is time.” –Steve Jobs, Playboy, February, 1985
4. “When you first start off trying to solve a problem, the first solutions you come up with are very complex, and most people stop there. But if you keep going, and live with the problem and peel more layers of the onion off, you can oftentimes arrive at some very elegant and simple solutions. Most people just don’t put in the time or energy to get there. We believe that customers are smart, and want objects which are well thought through.” –Steve Jobs, Newsweek, October 14, 2006
5. “The only way to do great work is to love what you do.” – Steve Jobs
6. “Sometimes when you innovate, you make mistakes. It is best to admit them quickly, and get on with improving your other innovations.” – I, Steve: Steve Jobs in His Own Words, 2001
7. “We don’t get a chance to do that many things and everyone should be really excellent. Because this is our life. Life is brief, and then you die, you know? And we’ve all chosen to do this with our lives. So it better be damn good. It better be worth it.” – Fortune, March, 2008
8. “That’s been one of my mantras — focus and simplicity. Simple can be harder than complex; you have to work hard to get your thinking clean to make it simple.” – Steve Jobs
9. “I’m convinced that about half of what separates the successful entrepreneurs from the non-successful ones is pure perseverance. It is so hard. You put so much of your life into this thing. There are such rough moments in time that I think most people give up. I don’t blame them. It’s really tough and it consumes your life. If you’ve got a family and you’re in the early days of a company, I can’t imagine how one could do it. I’m sure it’s been done but it’s rough. It’s pretty much an 18-hour day job, seven days a week for a while. Unless you have a lot of passion about this, you’re not going to survive.” – Steve Jobs, Smithsonian Institution Oral History Interview, April 20, 1995
10. “Quality is much better than quantity. One home run is much better than two doubles.” –Steve Jobs, Bloomberg BusinessWeek, February 5, 2006
11. “I think if you do something and it turns out pretty good, then you should go do something else wonderful, not dwell on it for too long. Just figure out what’s next.” – Steve Jobs
12. “The greatest thing is when you do put your heart and soul into something over an extended period of time, and it is worth it.” – Steve Jobs
13. “It’s really hard to design products by focus groups. A lot of times, people don’t know what they want until you show it to them.” – Steve Jobs
14. “Being the richest man in the cemetery doesn’t matter to me … Going to bed at night saying we’ve done something wonderful. That’s what matters to me.” – Steve Jobs
15. “When you grow up you tend to get told the world is the way it is and…to live your life inside the world. Try not to bash into the walls too much. Try to have a nice family, have fun, save a little money. That’s a very limited life. Life can be much broader once you discover one simple fact: Everything around you that you call life was made up by people that were no smarter than you and you can change it, you can influence it, you can build your own things that other people can use. Once you learn that, you’ll never be the same again.” –Steve Jobs, Interview with Santa Clara Valley Historical Association, 1994
Best Steve Jobs Quotes from about Innovation
16. “We are inventing the future,” [Jobs told a job applicant]. “Think about surfing on the front edge of a wave. It’s really exhilarating. Now think about dog-paddling at the tail end of that wave. It wouldn’t be anywhere near as much fun. Come down here and make a dent in the universe.” – Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson
17. “Be a yardstick of quality. Some people aren’t used to an environment where excellence is expected.” – Steve Jobs
18. “You can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backward. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something — your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever. This approach has never let me down, and it has made all the difference in my life.” –Steve Jobs, Stanford University Commencement Speech, 2005
19. “Getting fired from Apple was the best thing that could have ever happened to me. The heaviness of being successful was replaced by the lightness of being a beginner again. It freed me to enter one of the most creative periods of my life.” –Steve Jobs, Stanford University Commencement Speech, 2005
20. “Innovation distinguishes between a leader and a follower.” – Steve Jobs
21. “I had no idea what I wanted to do with my life and no idea how college was going to help me figure it out. And here I was spending all of the money my parents had saved their entire life. So I decided to drop out and trust that it would all work out okay…
The minute I dropped out I [began] dropping in on the [classes] that looked interesting… I learned about serif and sans serif typefaces, about varying the amount of space between different letter combinations, about what makes great typography great. It was beautiful, historical, artistically subtle in a way that science can’t capture, and I found it fascinating.” – Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson
22. “My model for business is The Beatles. They were four guys who kept each other’s kind of negative tendencies in check. They balanced each other, and the total was greater than the sum of the parts. That’s how I see business: Great things in business are never done by one person, they’re done by a team of people.” –Steve Jobs, CBS: 60 Minutes, 2008
23. “My self-identity does not revolve around being a businessman, though I recognize that is what I do. I think of myself more as a person who builds neat things. I like building neat things. I like making tools that are useful to people. I like working with very bright people.
I like interacting in the world of ideas, though somehow those ideas have to be tied to some physical reality. One of the things I like the most is dropping a new idea on a bunch of incredibly smart and talented people and then letting them work it out themselves. I like all of that very, very much.” –Steve Jobs, Esquire, December, 1986
24. “Don’t let the noise of other’s’ opinions drown out your own inner voice.” –Steve Jobs, Stanford University Commencement Speech, 2005
25. “When you’re a carpenter making a beautiful chest of drawers, you’re not going to use a piece of plywood on the back, even though it faces the wall and nobody will see it. You’ll know it’s there, so you’re going to use a beautiful piece of wood on the back. For you to sleep well at night, the aesthetic, the quality, has to be carried all the way through.” –Steve Jobs, Playboy, February, 1985
Were you inspired by these Steve Jobs quotes?
It is not hard to understand why Steve Jobs is admired by millions. His passion for perfection helped him to become one of the greatest innovative minds of all time. His will to do the impossible fueled all who followed him and made his doubters become believers.
Anytime you feel discouraged by this roller coaster ride that we call life; I ask you to think about these quotes from Steve Jobs – his passion, and his will to take big risk despite others calling him crazy.
Which of these Steve Jobs quotes was your favorite? Do you have any other inspirational quotes to add? Let us know in the comment section below.
August 10, 2022 5:00 AM EST