Aaron Levie, a self-described Jobs “wantrepreneur,” started Box, which allows cloud-based file-sharing, in his USC dorm room in 2005. To new hires, he quotes Jobs—”Some people aren’t used to an environment where excellence is expected”—to make clear to them that Box is just such an environment. “My lesson from Jobs,” Levie says, “is that I can push my employees further than they thought possible, and I won’t rush any product out the door without it being perfect.” He adds: “That approach comes with collateral damage on the people side.
I’m glad to see the media are starting to question the blinkered emulation of Steve Jobs’s neuroses as the secret to business success (something I’ve written about several times before), but the first third of this article still makes me want to slap someone. It’ll be interesting to observe the psychic toll this generation of misguided wannabes takes on the startup world.