The former CEO of Apple was known for being a tough nut and an intensely driven boss. Perhaps he also understood the adage that "time is money" better than anyone else, as Steve Jobs is fondly remembered for being extremely productive.
Jobs started Apple with his partner Steve Wozniak in 1973. Despite a brief departure from the company, he returned and remained its CEO till his death in 2011.
The man is most fondly remembered for revitalizing Apple with the iMac in the 1990s and also notably credited for his appealing branding and marketing designs.
A Business Insider report reveals three ways Jobs kept up productivity in Apple:
1. Small meetings only
Jobs kept his meetings streamlined to ensure that everyone was effectively productive; only those who had a stake in the goal of the meeting were required to be present.
Mr Ken Segall, an associate of Jobs, recalled that Jobs had told a staff member that she wasn't needed at Apple's weekly ad agency meeting.
"He stopped cold. His eyes locked on the one thing in the room that didn't look right. Pointing to Lorrie, he said, 'Who are you?'"
After she explained that she was asked to attend the meeting as she was a part of related marketing projects, Jobs told her to leave.
It seems like Jobs doesn't take orders from the top too.
He declined an invitation from US President Barack Obama when the latter asked him to join a small gathering of tech moguls. According to Business Insider, Jobs felt that Obama had invited too many people for his taste.
2. Someone needs to be responsible
Fortune magazine revealed that Jobs was driven by an "accountability mindset". He wanted everybody present in the meeting to know who was responsible for what.
Employees know it as the "DRI", or directly responsible individual. The DRI's name will appear on an agenda for a meeting so that it was clear to all who had to be accountable.
Marking responsibility clarifies communication protocols especially in startup situations. A former Apple employee, Ms Gloria Lin, found this system so effective that she adopted it when she led the product team at Flipboard, Business Insider reported.
"In a fast-growing company with tons of activity, important things get left on the table not because people are irresponsible but just because they're really busy," she wrote on Quora. "When you feel like something is your baby, then you really, really care about how it's doing."
3. No hiding behind PowerPoints
If Jobs was a man driven by passion, he made sure that his employees were too.
Jobs banned slideshows during his weekly Wednesday agenda-less meetings with his marketing and advertising team.
He wanted his team to debate, question and think critically without depending on technology. Jobs told Walter Isaacson, author of his biography, that he hated the way people used slideshow presentations instead of thinking.
"People would confront a problem by creating a presentation. I wanted them to engage, to hash things out at the table, rather than show a bunch of slides. People who know what they're talking about don't need PowerPoint."