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37 Years Ago, Apple Launched its IPO: Here Are Three Entrepreneurial Lessons From its Visionary Founder

Apple survived and thrived throughout the years. Here’s how one of the most innovative companies did it.

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BY Pauline Mendoza - 13 Dec 2017

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PHOTO CREDIT: Getty Images

This week marks an important one in Apple’s history. On December 12, 1980 to be exact, the tech giant went public at $22 per share, making some $100 million during its debut. With the stock symbol “AAPL” on the NASDAQ, it raised more capital than any IPO since the Ford Motor Company in 1956, EDN reports.

Apple’s late founder, Steve Jobs, left a legacy that pushed many entrepreneurs to rethink how business is done. Want to follow in his footsteps? Here are some business (and life) lessons from the esteemed innovator:

Time is the most precious commodity

My favorite things in life don't cost any money. It's really clear that the most precious resource we all have is time.

Even having raised millions of dollars in his 20s, Jobs held on to the idea that the good things in life are free, and that time is the most valuable of them all.

Often entrepreneurs are so consumed with meeting deadlines and time frames that they tend to live within it. It is important to pause and ponder how one spends time. Are you forgetting the things that matter most? Are you using time effectively so you can be free to do spend time with people you care about?

As Jeff Haden wrote in this Inc. article, “So forget deadlines, at least as a way to manage your activity. Tasks should only take as long as they need to take. Do everything as quickly and effectively as you can. Then, use your ‘free’ time to get other things done just as quickly and effectively.”

We get by with a little help from our friends

My model for business is The Beatles. They were four guys who kept each others kind of negative tendencies in check. They balanced each other, and the total was greater than the sum of the parts. Thats how I see business: Great things in business are never done by one person, they're done by a team of people.

Great leaders always acknowledge what their teams can do. Great leaders bring out the best in each team member. One can’t go solo all the way. Being in harmony with other people is very important for growth.

Jobs recognized that Apple’s success was not because of him alone. Since the company’s founding, the influential tech company is built by people who value innovation and collaboration, such that even now when its founder is no longer there, the company flourishes.

In life, love, and work, NEVER settle

Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven't found it yet, keep looking. Don't settle. As with all matters of the heart, you'll know when you find it.

Have you asked yourself if you love what you are doing? Or you still don’t know what you want to do for the rest of your life?

It’s okay to be a little lost. Start with something you’re good at. If you still have no idea what that is, just start doing something. If you like it, just keep going and improve on that. Eventually, you will find ways to make money doing what you love. Ultimately, find out how your hobby or skill is relevant in the world so you can be fueled with a sense of purpose. Only then will you be truly satisfied.