The Personal Traits Shared By Musk, Gates, And Jobs: 'They're Not Looking For Affection'

Zinger Key Points
  • Musk, Gates and Jobs were very unemotional when dealing with their employees.
  • Gates has admitted that he was not a sweetheart during his early days at Microsoft. 

Three CEOs known for being the leading innovators of our times have one personality trait in common, which why Elon Musk, Bill Gates, and the late Steve Jobs are so successful. 

According to the author and historian Walter Isaacson, Musk, Gates and Jobs were very unemotional when dealing with their employees or colleagues. However, they are also uncompromising about fulfilling their visions for businesses, Isaacson said on CNBC’s Squawk Box. 

Isaacson, who wrote Job’s biography and is working on a book about Musk, said he sees a direct comparison between Musk and Jobs’ social bluntness. 

“That ability to not be as emotionally, empathetically engaged to see [their] vision through. It’s something Steve Jobs had, it’s something Bill Gates [has],” Isaacson said.

Also Read: Bill Gates' 1974 Harvard Student Resume: Here Are The Mistakes He Made

“Musk is very similar [to Jobs] in being extraordinarily open,” he said. “That transparency is part of his genius.”

“It’s something many of these people have because they’re not looking for affection from the person sitting across them. Instead, they’re looking to get rockets to Mars,” he added. 

Isaacson said about Musk, “I’ve always been interested in innovators and people who push the boundaries, and he’s pushing the most important and difficult boundaries.”

However, he added that Musk definitely “cares about his reputation” — but that doesn’t change his tendency to be blunt, or even harsh, with employees.

In a podcast telecasted in 2020, Gates admitted that he was not a sweetheart during his early days at Microsoft. 

Gates said that he and Jobs were known for their intense competitive fire. It eventually translated into extremely high expectations for their employees.
Photo: Created with images from Greg RubensteinTesla Owners Club Belgium and Kazuhiro Shiozawa on flickr

Market News and Data brought to you by Benzinga APIs
Posted In: NewsEntrepreneurshipTop StoriesGeneralBill GatesElon MuskSteve Jobs
Benzinga simplifies the market for smarter investing

Trade confidently with insights and alerts from analyst ratings, free reports and breaking news that affects the stocks you care about.

Join Now: Free!