( [BOOKS] The Hard Thing About Hard Things ) ¹ Ben Horowitz – doctorio.us
Ben Horowitz ↠ 5 SummaryI haven t read many ny books that re written by CEO s for CEO s If you re CEO spire to be CEO or really manage nyone you need to read this book This uote is perhaps my favorite one from the book At the top nobody is there to tell you what to do It s easy to look Badge 387: The Story of Jim Simone, America's Most Decorated Cop at some leadersnd wonder how they knew what to do to become so successful Are they just really smart The truth is that they likely did what everyone else in that situation has to do get scrappy Castle's Fortress and just figure it outnd don t give upGreat CEOs face the pain They deal with the sleepless nights the cold sweats nd what my friend the great Alfred Chuang legendary cofounder nd CEO of BEA Systems calls the torture Whenever I meet successful CEO I sk them how they did it Mediocre CEOs point to their brilliant strategic moves or their intuitive business sense or Dating by the Book a variety of other self congratulatory explanations The great CEOs tend to be remarkably consistent in theirnswers They ll say I didn t uit My second favorite uote from the book speaks to one of the greatest challenges ll entrepreneurs face worklife balance I like to say work hard play hard But sometimes it s easy to forget the play part Or to buy flowers once in while But the cost of those on your health or relationships can cost much As company grows communication becomes its biggest challenge If the employees fundamentally trust the CEO then communication will be vastly efficient than if they don tBen had One Sinful Night a lot of greatdvice on how to hire well especially executives Looking to void reactionary big company execs when you need someone who will come in nd get stuff done proactively Looking for people who can think on their feet Dirty Professor and not make everything nail for the hammer of their prior experience by sking How will your new job differ from your current one Looking for people who re mission driven nd use the team prism instead of the me prism He lso had dvice bout onboarding nd trainingHiring for strength instead of lack of weakness I ve definitely seen instances of this where candidate is great in some reas that we really need but isn t great t everything Knowing what you value most is critical here Melville; Shame Evil Eye: A Psychoanalytic Reading and I fullydmit not easy to doI d learned the hard way that when hiring executives one should follow Colin Powell s instructions nd hire for strength rather than lack of weaknessOn hiring internally vs externally Internal candidates cross often do better which is Brody a great thing to thinkbout when building Brody (Circle Eight, a team when it comes to CEO succession internal candidates dramatically outperform external candidates The core reason is knowledge Knowledge of technology prior decisions culture personnelnd tends to be far difficult to His Voice, His Command acuire than the skills reuired to manage larger organizationOne of my favorite sections was Managing strictly by numbers is like painting by numbers No matter how well you instrument your metrics nd goals you can ever perfectly encapsulate everything you need your company to be doing Innovation is often like this with many big innovations the team will often struggle to find how it drives value s it doesn t seem to hit the core metric But they can ll gree it will improve things I think big part of the CEO s job is to have strong product vision Kid and to not compromise on it I often see teams that maniacally focus on their metricsround customer Wait Till Next Year - A Memoir acuisitionnd retention This usually works well for customer Venus in Sackcloth: The Magdelen's Origins and Metamorphoses acuisition but not so well for retention Why For many products metrics often describe the customercuisition goal in enough detail to provide sufficient management guidance In contrast the metrics for customer retention do not provide enough color to be Iced Under a complete management tool As result many young companies overemphasize retention metrics nd do not spend enough time going deep enough on the ctual user experience This generally results in frantic numbers chase that does not end in great productBen talked bout the difference between CEO s who can set direction for company often founding CEO s nd those can can operationally run it s it grows How great CEOs need to be good Within a Captains Hold (Captains of the Scarlet Night, at bothnd founding CEOs who don t scale Butcher are those who don t learn the operational side And conversely operational CEOs who don t get goodt making decisions bout direction will fail Ben talked bout how Some employees make products some make sales the CEO makes decisions The strength of those decisions is built upon having data Data bout what customers think Data bout what employees think Data bout the metrics A CEO has to be constant data ccumulating machine Another nuance was that CEO can make decision t One Last Kiss any point in time with the data they have now identify what data would change their mindnd seek it out Great CEOs build exceptional strategies for gathering the reuired information continuously They embed their uest for intelligence into ll of their daily ctions from staff meetings to customer meetings to one on ones Winning strategies re built on comprehensive knowledge gathered in every interaction the CEO has with n employee customer partner or No One Needs To Know an investorBen s storiesbout Loudcloud Selections From Great Works of Mawlana Jalal Al-Din Rumi and Opswarend the Hard Things he dealt with were impressive I do think they spread too much throughout the book nd would have been better concentrated in one part of the book nd supplemented by examples from other companies But would have been better concentrated in one part of the book nd supplemented by examples from other companies But Doesn T Detract From doesn t detract from can learn from them It was strange that he opens each chapter with rap lyrics that often seem very disconnected to the chapter I guess he likes rap but stillPretty cool Ben had Michael Ovitz s n dvisor And that he modeled A16Z fter CAA where instead of independent gentsVCs have Murder at Morningside a shared networknd invest in strategic networks that will help the companies Michael Ovitz on dealmaking Gentlemen I ve done many deals in my lifetime nd through that process I ve developed methodology Dead Perfect a way of doing things philosophy if you will Within that philosophy I have certain beliefs I believe in rtificial deadlines I believe in playing one gainst the other I believe in doing everything Bones To Pick andnything short of illegal or immoral to get the damned deal doneOne interesting tendency Ben points out is that When company starts to lose its major battles the truth often becomes the first casualty You have to be vigilant in looking for the truth nd have backbone spot it The reason for this is that humans particularly those who build things only listen to leading indicators of good news Which is so true We can lways find reasons to excuse way bad news nd reasons to believe good news means than it should Ben closes with uote I really believe in life is bout the journey not the destination So you have to embrace the journey Be so mission driven that the struggles you inevitably face re worth it Life is struggle I believe that within that uote lies the most important lesson in entrepreneurship Embrace the struggle This is the very best business book I have ever readI would estimate that I ve read roughly 1000 I ve loved maybe 100 Th. A lot of people talk bout how great it is to start business but only Ben Horowitz is brutally honest New Girl on the Job about how hard it is to run oneIn The Hard Thing About Hard Things Ben Horowitz cofounder of Andreessen Horowitznd one of Silicon Valley's most respected Restaurant Weeks Are Murder and experienced entrepreneurs draws on his own story of founding running selling buying managingnd investing in technology companies to offer essential dvice nd practical wisdom for navigating the toughest problems business schools don't cover His blog has garnered devoted following of millions of readers who have come to rely on him to help them run their businesses A lifelong rap .
Is one is in it s own category book that both documents the times Her Wounded Warrior about 12 15 yearsgo nd paints picture of what we can do todayI cannot recommend it highly enough nd I cannot say strongly read it If you know me email me t my personal ddress nd I ll buy it for you There One House Over (The Neighbors) are few things that happen to n entrepreneur I ve faced down the belly of the no cash people might find out that we re phonies thing Between You and Me (The Harrisons, a few times but thisdds Cinderella and the Ghost (The Cursed Princes, a vocabulary to the emotions that I ve felt offnd on ll my life These re my people this is what I spire to be how I spire to live nd the journey I spire to takeSome will say that the book is for funded startups nd I m hustler for life I say nonsense the struggle scales It is just s scary fighting for your own personal livelihood s it is fighting for the jobs of 300 peopleThere is practical information how to conduct review how to live your life how move forwardI can t say strongly if nything I ve said has ever moved you over the years go out nd buy this bookA couple things I missed my spot on the standby list because I was so engrossed in this book I literally cried during story of how they dealt with n employe s cancer during merger It s hard for me give this rating s I haven t really read many other how to business books I liked the narrative section t the beginning of the book bit better than the tactical Killer Physique (Savannah Reid Mystery, advice section but I think that s probably just how I prefer to get information Therere some great lessons in here for non CEOs but I suspect it s even valuable for those who have founded ndor run company I think most relevant ndor interesting to me were Hiring for strength rather than lack of weakness If you re bringing someone new onto the team really think hard bout what strengths re most important for the job nd find someone who is world class Amish Homecoming at those things If that person isn ts strong Enticing the Earl at everything else on your check list don t sweat it Importance of one on oness management techniue It s sort of incredible that people can manage without one on one meetings but I guess it happens The big breakthrough or t least the one that I hadn t put into words before is that it s the employee s meeting rather than the manager s I mean duh but still Jewish German Revolution a good framework for thinkingbout the meeting As CEO you don t have time to develop your direct reports I suspect this is really difficult for many CEOs to deal with t first I know it would be tough for me But it makes sense t that level you just have to be ble to do the job with minimal to no developmental runwayAnyway for my first management book this one was fun nd readable nd very honest Also lots of hip hop uotes for those who roll that way This is one of the best books you ll ever read on entrepreneurship Money Makin Mamas Collection and being CEOIf you Bound To Love Her (Zebra Debut) are CEO read this bookIf you Hard to Handle (Fortis aspire to be CEO read this bookIf you First Comes Desire (Pirates Prize are on management team nd want to understand what CEO goes through read this bookIf you What Lies Between Lovers are interested in entrepreneurshipnd want to understand it better read this bookOn Friday I spent the entire day with bout 50 of the CEOs of companies we re investors in Rand Fishkin of Moz put together Rebel Yell (Savage Texas, a full day Foundry Group CEO Summit It used format Rand has used before We broke up into five different groups A Matter of Some Scandal and has sessions onbout ten total topics throughout the day The groups were fluid people were organized by category lpha nd beta but then went to the topic they were interested in There was moderator for each session the first five minutes was each CEO putting up one top of mind issue in the topic nd the then balance of the session 75 minutes was the entire group spending between 5 Worth The Trade (More Than A Game, and 15 minutes on each topicIt waswesome We finished with fun dinner t Pizzeria Locale I drove home with my mind buzzing nd rrived round 8pm to see Amy laying on the coach reading book So I grabbed by iPad nd looked to see what was new on itI d pre ordered Ben s book so it was in slot number one It felt fitting to start reading itAt 1030 I was
finished with it The Hard Thing About Hard Things was the perfectwith it The Hard Thing About Hard Things was the perfect to cap off day with the CEOs of the companies we invest inTrust me "On This One Go Buy "this one Go buy Hard Thing About Hard Things right nowBen thanks for writing this nd putting 100% of your heart into it I can t take insights from someone who has so little insight bout himself Cases in point As white boy you do not have to call yourself the Jackie Robinson of barbecue You can just say you re good The Closest Possible Union at barbecuing Or say nothing really because it s irrelevant That fact that your grandfather once WENT to black neighborhood is not Lottie Tomlinson's Rainbow Roots: a story Seriously you should not tell people that because IT S NOT A STORY The fact that you bullied your wife into going on her first date with you is kind of story but it doesn t reflect well on you I wish I could get past these things because Horowitz undoubtedly know much bout business than I do But no I m out If one of your executives becomes big jerk dog you have to send her to the pound Woof Pun intended This was nothing like I expected Lost Princess and not in particularly good way The subtitle Building Postcards from Last Summer a Business When There Are No Easy Answers led me to believe this would be useful book for Hot Shot a budding entrepreneur but the term building is rather misleading This covers great deal of The Industrial Revolution already very established business issues in great detail suchs hiring Rock Bottom and firing executives designingn organization s hierarchy nd conducting layoffs I probably should ve DNFd it fter the first half but every now nd then useful little tidbit would pop up nd I would keep listening udiobooks for nonfiction lways I think essentially this book was neither my style I meanserious eye roll t that uote bove nor provided information I found useful Coupled with my issues with the overall structure I had to go with 1 starThe structure started out well nd I was hopeful Horowitz provided Peace of Me a solid chronological background of his lifend business experience through the first three chapters And the next few chapters did in fact provide dvice for entrepreneurs of startup level companies bits like his dvice to look for My Soul Then Sings a market of onend ignore the thirty guaranteed rejections were very engaging But soon Wildwood after it became lost cause Advanced business dvice was intermixed with stories from his own career nd the constant timeline jumping between years nd companies was ridiculously confusing From there the structure felt completely bandoned in favor of rambling stream of consciousness bout ny business related topic that came to mind All in ll it was incredibly difficult to find the motivation to finish this book Raiding with Morgan and I was passively listening ton udiobookthere was very little effort reuiredThere was great deal of profanity nd casual usage of terms like depression that left sour taste in my mouth On top of that Horowitz came Lethal Licorice (Amish Candy Shop Mystery, acrosss Rather Aggressive Abrasive Person aggressive brasive person little regard for how his words Rogue on the Rollaway andctions might ffect those round him I understand that he s facing pressures nd challe. An Horowitz mplifies business lessons with lyrics from his favorite songs nd tells it straight bout everything from firing friends to poaching competitors from cultivating nd sustaining CEO mentality to knowing the right time to cash inHis dvice is grounded in necdotes from his own hard earned rise from cofounding the early cloud service provider Loudcloud to building the phenomenally successful Andreessen Horowitz venture capital firm both with fellow tech superstar Marc Andreessen inventor of Mosaic the Internet's first popular Web browser This is no polished victory lap; he nalyzes issues with no easy nswers through his trials incl. ,
Nges of running gigantic businesses that I will never understand particularly during his war periods nd he certainly provided examples of when he was thoughtful towards other people like paying for the medical treatments of the ex CEO of company he purchased However his pproach to other people nd evident lack of empathy is just not my style nor something I enjoyed listening to for n entire udiobookToo much of this book was spent in excruciating detail on his own companies nd deals rather than providing dvice Haunted House Murder (A Lucy Stone Mystery, and information transferable or usable by other entrepreneurs Perhaps with better structure his intentions would have been clearer eg lesson topic story reiterate lesson but for the majority of this book I felt like I was listening to stories with no concept of their relevancy or why I should care There waslso just Sweet Southern Hearts (A Willow Hill Novel Book 3) a level of toxic masculinity show no weakness display unrelenting confidencend ggressiveness displayed in this book that soured most of the messages for me While some of the dvice was useful his emphasis on hiring for strengths rather than weaknesses I just didn t click with this bookThe Trusty Bookmark Instagram Pinterest Executive Summary This is book bout Ben Horowitz s war stories Ben Horowitz has good war stories if you care bout the narrow space of Venture Backed fast growth technology startups I m not so sure that they generalize to the point of making good management guide You might be better off reading some DruckerFirst the Daddy's Girl Series: A Taboo Erotic Collection absolute preliminaries Ben Horowitz co founded LoudCloud with Marc Andreessen in 1999 with plan to do enterprise managed services what has now grown to the SaaS nd IaaS space They were technological pioneers in that space They weathered the dot com bubble burst but it was touch nd go since most of their clients were other tech firms going bankrupt They IPOd in post bubble environment with declining market They pivoted to become Opsware tech services firm ie further up in the backend of the managed services stack They pivoted s Dark Tides (Dark Tides a public corporation close to bankruptcy which is nightmare I wouldn t wish on my worst enemies They weathered NASDA delisting threats mass employee revolts the whole Mad Max scenario So he offers the prospect of excellent data from the inside Ben Weathering the Storm also has reputation in the valley Wrong for Me (Motor City Royals, as no bullshit guy so this is valuableSecond some initial thoughts To the extent that Ben s st If you got dvice from someone you found really nnoying even if it was good Fiddle: One Woman, Four Strings, and 8,000 Miles of Music advice fromn interesting perspective would you be ble to get over how nnoying the person talking your ear off isThat s basically where I m with this book I think his dvice is really interesting Downright Dead and it s clear that lot of the lessons he s learned throughout the course of his career were earned with blood nd sweat but ultimately I m not sure I can get past how nnoying I found the voice he was writing in He sets up the most epic humblebrag ever first by talking bout this Bill Campbell guy nd how Left Fur Dead awesome he isnd what great mentor Bill Campbell is to people like Jeff Bezos Then t the end of the book he introduces one of the chapters by sharing that Bill Campbell told him he Ben was the best CEO he s ever worked with Nice He uses rap lyrics from the Trinidad James All Gold Everything song to make really relevant tie in to the topic he s discussing because he likes the lyrics I guess But I really want to take dvice from someone who will take Death by Tea a break from braggingbout shit to drop some Trinidad James That really makes me feel like this guy s not just Loyalty and Lies (Chastity Falls, any CEO He s cool CEO He is one of those people who reads The Art of War nd tries too hard to pply it to business situations Isn t it cool that he curses By Way Of A Wager at work Btw profanity can be great when used on purpose by CEO to make point Btw profanity can be great when used on purpose by CEO to make point Btw profanity can be great when used on purpose by CEO to make point Fuck Sorry That s bout how many times in the book he makes this point Even though he s supposedly When Kingdom Comes a Kingkillernd done ll this other cool shit by the end of the first book Kvothe has done basically nothingOkay I m drinking too much haterade nd The Wayward Bride (Besotted Scots, all the books I don t likere blurring together I m cutting myself off This is not book that I think many general readers would enjoy The first part is bout the Such a Dance author s experiences buildingnd running various tech companies nd is fairly interesting Most of it though is huge compendium of short bits of management dvice that gets very tedious It might be of interest if I were looking for how to book but even so it seems to be based pretty heavily on the uthor s own experience ie I did this I was successful Ergo this is the right thing to do I suppose that is better than taking dvice from failure but I would prefer than one sample pointI read it based on positive mention in The Economist I guess they La bte du marais are bettert commentary than book recommendations Ben Horowitz joined Netscape in the very early days Laos: Keystone Of Indochina and proceeded to ride the internet wavell the way up How Foreign Policy Decisions Are Made In The Third World all the way downnd everywhere in between over the course of his career In this memoirbusiness dvice book he recounts choice moments from his extensive career nd shares information he found important Geeking Out on 11C along the wayIn world filled with Rah Rah You Can Do It business books I found the tone of this book incredibly refreshing The opening paragraph gets right to the point that it doesn t matter how much you believe in your company when your market has crashed your point that it doesn t matter how much you believe in your company when your market has crashed your is disappearing Et ainsi de suite and your employeesre revolting The key to really being The Shoshoni Cookbook a successful entrepreneur has less to do with your visionnd to do with your Historias sobre los Fondos Bahá'ís ability to make good decisions when therere nothing to do with your vision Reasoning with the Infinite: From the Closed World to the Mathematical Universe and to do with yourbility to make good decisions when there Real Food/Fake Food: Why You Don’t Know What You’re Eating and What You Can Do About It are nothing badnd worse options to choose fromHorowitz personal stories were the most interesting part of
book particularly gripping was his tale bout desperately trying to raise money right fter the crash when his company was on the verge of bankruptcy nd his wife was undergoing major health crisis He is incredibly honest s he talks bout the sheer terror the sleepless nights the nausea nd the incredible emotional toll trying to right failing ship takes on the entrepreneurial soulIn the middle section of the book he offers specific dvice drawn from things he has learned over the years including n interesting discussion on the difference between hiring for strength instead of for lack of weakness Much of this section won t be useful for people outside the tech industry however s I don t think issues like how to handle job pplications from people who work for your other CEO friends re likely to pply outside the small world of Silicon Valley A lot of his Mr Darcy's Cottage of Earthly Delights: Shades of Pride and Prejudice advicelso pplies to people who re running companies with hundreds if not thousands of employeesDespite not being in that world however I still found this book useful read Given how grueling starting nd running company is it s helpful to get signposts from someone who has been through s much s Horowitz has. Udingdemoting or firing loyal friend;whether you should incorporate titles The Cat Who Lived with Anne Frank and promotionsnd how to handle them;if it's OK to hire people from your friend's company;how to manage your own psychology while the whole company is relying on you;what to do when smart people re bad employees;why Andreessen Horowitz prefers founder CEOs nd how to become one;whether you should sell your company nd how to do itFilled with Horowitz's trademark humor nd straight talk nd drawing from his personal nd often humbling experiences The Hard Thing About Hard Things is invaluable for veteran entrepreneurs Yoga Kitchen: Divine Recipes from the Shoshoni Yoga Retreat as wells those Design Works: How to Tackle Your Toughest Innovation Challenges Through Business Design aspiring to their own new venture.the book particularly gripping was his tale bout desperately trying to raise money right fter the