Steve Jobs was master at casting spells: Bill Gates

Bill Gates speaks ahead of an African Union summit in Ethiopia's capital Addis Ababa earlier this year (AFP File Photo)

Steve Jobs was a master at 'casting spells' to keep employees motivated and working long hours, Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates has said, as he praised the late Apple CEO's incredible leadership style that helped the company which was 'on a path to die' to turn into one of the most valuable firms.

Jobs, the former Apple CEO who died of pancreatic cancer in 2011, was an example of 'don't do this at home' in his style of leadership, the billionaire philanthropist said.

"I was like a minor wizard because he would be casting spells, and I would see people mesmerised, but because I'm a minor wizard, the spells don’t work on me," said the world's second-richest person.

"I have yet to meet any person who could match him in terms of picking talent and hyper-motivating that talent."

"He brought some incredibly positive things along with that toughness," Gates said.

Jobs was the singular reason, he said, for why Apple went on to become the most valuable company in the world, after being on the path to die.

Since Jobs’ passing, the leadership of the company has gone to current CEO Tim Cook.

Gates was interviewed by CNN for a programme on leadership that was scheduled for broadcast on Sunday.

When asked about his own style of leadership, Gates, who had his own reputation of being hard on people, said, "Other than a DOJ deposition I gave, no one ever said that when I went out to talk to the press or customers, that I was rude or abrupt or commanding.”

Gates was referring to his deposition before the Department of Justice when it had sued Microsoft.

Inside Microsoft, "we were pretty tough on each other, sometimes that went too far", he said. 

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