Schmidt said last week that the competition between the two companies is more “brutal” than ever, and Apple CEO Tim Cook and Schmidt have taken jabs at each other’s companies.
But despite the fierce competition, when asked who his heroes were he said: “For me, it’s easy. Steve Jobs,”
“We could all aspire to be a small percentage of Steve,” he said of Apple’s late co-founder.
Schmidt and Jobs met in 1993, when Schmidt was working at Sun Microsystems and Jobs was at NeXT, the computer company he founded after being ousted from Apple. Schmidt, then Google’s CEO, was invited to join Apple’s board in 2006.
Schmidt describes Jobs as the quintessential “smart creative”. He added “Exceptional people are worth hanging out with… because there is a good chance they are going to change the world.”
This adoration might explain why when Jobs suggested building an employment cartel to screw up the lives of Silicon Valley employees, Schmidt said yes. It would also explain why, against all logic he fired whoever Jobs told him to.