his was self-delusion, and it was a recipe for disaster. Jobs began to sense it early on. “We had different ways of looking at the world, different views on people, different values,” Jobs recalled. “I began to realize this a few months after he arrived. He didn’t learn things very quickly, and the people he wanted to promote were usually bozos.”
Yet Jobs knew that he could manipulate Sculley by encouraging his belief that they were so alike. And the more he manipulated Sculley, the more contemptuous of him he became. Canny observers in the Mac group, such as Joanna Hoffman, soon realized what was happening and knew that it would make the inevitable breakup more explosive. “Steve made Sculley feel like he was exceptional,” she said. “Sculley had never felt that. Sculley became infatuated, because Steve projected on him a whole bunch of attributes that he didn’t really have. When it became clear that Sculley didn’t match all of these projections, Steve’s distortion of reality had created an explosive situation.”
began to cool on Sculley’s side as well. Part of his weakness in trying to manage a dysfunctional company was his desire to please other people, one of many traits that he did not share with Jobs. He was a polite person; this caused him to recoil at Jobs’s rudeness to their fellow workers. “We would go to the Mac building at eleven at night,” he recalled, “and they would bring him code to show. In some cases he wouldn’t even look at it. He would just take it and throw it back at them. I’d say, ‘How can you turn it down?’ And he would say, ‘I know they can do better.’” Sculley tried to coach him. “You’ve got to learn to hold things back,” he told him at one point. Jobs would agree, but it was not in his nature to filter his feelings through a gauze.
Sculley began to believe that Jobs’s mercurial personality and erratic treatment of people were rooted deep in his psychological makeup, perhaps the reflection of a mild bipolarity. There were big mood swings; sometimes he would be ecstatic, at other times he was depressed. At times he would launch into brutal tirades without warning, and Sculley would have to calm him down. “Twenty minutes later, I would get another call and be told to come over because Steve is losing it again,” he said.
Their first substantive disagreement was over how to price the Macintosh. It had been conceived as a $1,000 machine, but Jobs’s design changes had pushed up the cost so that the plan was to sell it at $1,995. However, when Jobs and Sculley began making plans for a huge launch and marketing push, Sculley decided that they needed to charge $500 more. To him, the marketing costs were like any other production cost and needed to be factored into the price. Jobs resisted, furiously. “It will destroy everything we stand for,” he said. “I want to make this a revolution, not an effort to squeeze out profits.” Sculley said it was a simple choice: He could have the $1,995 price or he could have the marketing budget for a big launch, but not both.