A place where people are heard and taken care of even when the organization grows. … We get a first-person view of his life as a CEO, founder, and manager. When it is a justified dismissal of a senior executive, such as a director, VP or senior managers, more attention is needed. For a manager to have a good one-to-one meeting with his / her leader, the important thing is to make it clear to the employee that the meeting is there for him/her, not the other way around. The first type has a decision-making profile, with a focus on defining the organization’s path, vision, and strategy, but prefers not to focus specifically on day-to-day implementation, management and performance. A lot of people talk about how great it is to start a business, but only Ben Horowitz is brutally honest about how hard it is to run one. Ben Horowitz is a general partner and co-founder of Silicon Valley venture capital firm Andreessen Horowitz. The CEO in wartimes has a huge responsibility. We’ve gathered our favorite 30 nuggets – visual quotes from books – below to convince you about that! There are two types of CEOs. The first is the acquisition of talent / intellectual property, and usually, it occurs in the range of $ 5 to 50 million. In times of peace, the company already has an advantage over other competitors in the market, and it is the role of the CEO to focus on increasing this advantage, guaranteeing prosperity. But there is more to starting a business than just thinking about it, and Ben Horowitz faces this challenge head-on. The particular hard may last a long time or a little, depending on what it is. Not even your mom. You must know how to hire and fire quickly and ensure fair treatment and constant training. You will realize your product has flaws that are expensive to fix. Can I implement my ideas well? Unplanned things will happen. shows that he is not only a successful business person but a first-rate storyteller as well. You can read it from cover to cover and get a lot of value. You’ll learn about hiring for strengths rather than weaknesses, how to set expectations, the importance of trust, and how to choose the right metrics to track. That is hard to estimate and, therefore, this subject requires a great analysis by company managers and mainly the CEO. There are dozens of management and leadership books written by CEOs and top executives. In times of peace, the CEO focus is on developing the creativity of its employees. This is the kind of learning required when delving into a cutting-edge field, navigating a new job, or creating anything genuinely new. Almost all your question starts with “Can I?”. Besides, training should be constant and always revisited. What Makes a Leader? There’s a big difference between reading and listening. The hard thing isn’t setting up an organizational chart. Your skillset. Summary. In The Hard Thing About Hard Things, Ben Horowitz, cofounder of Andreessen Horowitz and one of Silicon Valley's most respected and experienced entrepreneurs, draws on his own story of founding, running, selling, buying, managing, and investing in technology … For some reason I was expecting this book to be about how to do hard things. Instead, fire people as soon as you decide to do so. This is essential for maintaining team morale and also for hiring in the future. If you’re like me, you probably give people the benefit of the doubt and believe that everyone has a heart as kind as yours. 1. First is the willingness to choose the hard resolution to a problem. You will realize your product has flaws that are expensive to fix. Published by Harper Business, 2014. At the third level, you’re trying to put data together. It seems like starting an entrepreneurial business is all the rage these days. Remember that you do not have to bear everything alone. No? The cash you have. It is necessary to be aware of the characteristics that big CEOs tend to exhibit, and for the first-time CEO, it is important to assimilate and repeat them. One rule of thumb is to not sell if you have the advantage of first moving into a large market that you believe will lead. Being scared . No exact formula can save you from those unplanned bumps on the road. Sign up for my newsletter and download the Reader's Kit. In this summary, we’ll outline what’s covered in the book, and share some of the business and management tips. It may be just the thing you need to persist through the rough times. A set of printables that will help you keep track of the books you read and more. That’s the hard thing about hard things—there is no formula for dealing with them. HR is like a quality sector of the business itself. Because in the end, nobody cares; just run your company.” Ben Horowitz, Actionable Book Summary: The Hard Thing About Hard Things by Ben Horowitz. All training must be functional, giving employees the skills they need to achieve their goals and succeed. To get you through those hard times, check out the hardest things about learning English, and how you can get past them. In contrast, if you’re always taking care of the people, they’ll follow you even when the shit hits the fan – which always happens whether we like it or not. It’s the ability to stay focused and make a move even when it seems like there are no good moves left to be made. Grove decided to change the direction of the company and invest in microprocessors, a decision that at the time seemed insane but later proved to be a sound strategy. Recently I read “The Hard Thing About Hard Things” and took notes throughout. You can still fail. Because, you know, unexpected things are bound to happen. Nonetheless, there are many bits of advice and experience that can help with the hard things. It’s honest and it’s ugly, but it’ll give you a true understanding of life as an entrepreneur. What Makes a Leader? The third type is when the company to be acquired may break with the business model of the company it buys, as in the case of HP’s purchase of Opsware for $ 1.6 billion in 2007. Often, this type of management can result in organizations that, faced with a major decision, slow down or make more consensual decisions which are risky. At Opsware, Ben was looking for a good executive to lead the company’s sales team. That means it’s almost impossible to say whether a CEO will be successful early in his career or his first job as CEO. Whatever success I’ve had in my career, I attribute almost entirely to my aptitude for unstructured learning. Everyone should execute on the plan conveyed by the CEO. They are hard because you don’t know the answer and you cannot ask for help without showing weakness. That is achieved through clear internal training processes. In “The Hard Thing about Hard Things”, he shares his experience as an entrepreneur, CEO and venture capitalist, and offers practical tips and advice for dealing with the “hard things” in business that have no clear answers. High or low, the CEO needs to adopt different positions. Unlike the other business books, where the authors talk mostly about how cool it is to start a business, how to raise capital, and how important it is to carefully plan your next 5 years, in The Hard Things About The Hard Things you’ll find what to do when things go south. 2. If you have a start-up, you know it, if you want to have a start-up, you should know it: each start-up faces the struggle. However, there are some life lessons you have to learn the hard way. 2. On the side of the CEO. That is, to keep death in mind at all times. Software will brake. Facing such an issue in the private market, the board of Loudcloud decided to take the company public. So, a couple of things to do that will help you get past the Struggle with fewer casualties: Regardless of what you’re doing, at some point, things will begin to fall apart. The Hard Thing About Hard Things has been the most recommended book to me from numerous conversations with great entrepreneurs on my … Still, there is one skill that might give you a competitive advantage when things are hard. This book exists to tells us that things are different, hard, unstable, unpredictable, on the other side. In wartime, a CEO must clearly communicate to all of the personal that there is no room for personal creativity and solo-stunts. The Hard Thing about Hard Things is about being a CEO and how challenging that job is. Boost your life and career with the best book summaries. A place where people come to work with joy. A lifelong rap fanatic, he amplifies business lessons with lyrics from his favorite songs, telling it straight about everything from firing friends to poaching competitors, cultivating and sustaining a CEO mentality to knowing the right time to cash in. But the reality is very much different from everything you’ve learned or read about. In the end, he decided to sell the company, and it was heartbreaking, but now he considers it to be one of the best business moves of his career. You can read more on Horowitz’s journey in “The Hard Thing About Hard Things”. Yet, all of the time we are doing them. We have to be honest here; your company may not even make it. However, one of the most important rites is the one-to-one meetings each executive and manager must have their direct reports. If you’re a CEO, and you’re looking to hire people in higher roles – think HR director, CFO, VP of sales – make sure you’ve done the job yourself. The book addresses the challenges of going through difficult times without giving up and always focusing on developing the business despite adversity. Additionally, make the managers deliver the bad news to their employees. He outlines his screw-ups in addition to how his team fixed them or screwed them up further. Every acquisition is hard to handle emotionally and justified rationally. Another thing I realized, is that many of the things I think of as being hard are periods of transition, both beginning periods and ending periods. He teaches readers using a refreshing approach and allusions from real-life famous people such as Jay Z, Dr. Seuss, or Clint Eastwood. Nobody will think, “Gee, what did she really mean by that comment? Circumstances may differ, but deeper patterns and the lessons keep resonating. Key Lessons from “The Hard Thing About Hard Things” 1. Holding low potential professionals in the company or who are not going according to the expected lowers the productivity of the whole team and also damages the company culture. There are no shortcuts to knowledge, especially knowledge … The Hard Thing About Hard Things: Buildinga Business When There Are No Easy Answers this is a great booksthat I think are not only fun to read but also veryeducational. Being a CEO is a difficult, lonely and challenging task. This architecture includes standard meetings, processes, etc. It’s complicated being a CEO, but if there is one critical skill that stands out in the best CEOs is the ability to do the right thing even when there are no good options. 6 Key Lessons from The Hard Thing About Hard Things: Lesson #1: There’s No Secret Sauce To Becoming A Good CEO. This action forced the remaining professionals who believed in the company to focus on growth and allowed the others to leave. And though the answer is positive, the steps to go beyond that wretched place are far from easy. It is also important to create a continuous feedback loop, where it is always explicit to practitioners and managers what they did right and what they could do better. When it comes time to talk directly to the executive, you have to be very careful about how to communicate, planning the language first, making it clear that the decision is final and never humiliating the professional. More than two is even better. Ben Horowitz is brutally honest about the complications coming from running a business, especially in the tech industry, and paints a pretty grim picture of what might go wrong and how to act in these shitty situations. Ben Horowitz, cofounder of Andreessen Horowitz and one of Silicon Valley’s most respected and experienced entrepreneurs, offers essential advice on building and running a startup-practical wisdom for managing the toughest problems business school doesn’t … We all dream of managing a business into millions of dollars, happy clients and even happier employees, but it is usually a series of failures you’re trying to overcome. It is not able to deliver the product itself but it tells if you are offering good products and if the quality standard is improving or not. In my mind a “hard thing” was a single project that was technically difficult. Here are just a few: Not everyone you think is your friend is on your side. A peacetime strategy is the case of Google, a company that has never faced competition and remains focused only on improving its products, so its priority is to increase the speed with which people access the internet. In large companies, executives are expected to have the ability to prioritize and analyze large volumes of incoming projects individually. Learn to work with pressure, stress and all the challenges that come with the idea of being the CEO of a startup, so at the end of the journey, the payoff can be great. Therefore, it is crucial that he/she ensures the company has a good human resources department and that it detects signs of visible problems in your organization. If a CEO does not take action on badly performing professionals and does not communicate the facts according to the company’s expectations, rumors spread, and some stop believing in the culture and management of the company. But when, and if you successfully pass the Struggle, greatness awaits. Always communicate to your employees the importance of their roles and how their work will be evaluated to ensure the company’s performance continues to evolve. The hard thing is getting people to communicate within the organization that you just designed. Grab a book and BOOST your learning routine. This effort to ensure that only those members of the team who truly believed in the business stayed, was the right choice and, in the long run, pushed the stock price from cents to $ 7 in record time. Take into account Andy Grove, who was CEO of Intel in the 1980s. Ben Horowitz, cofounder of Andreessen Horowitz and one of Silicon Valley's most respected and experienced entrepreneurs, offers essential advice on building and running a startup — practical wisdom for managing the toughest problems business school doesn’t cover. 3. Those stories energized you and got you to dream BIG. It is an ever revolving door for teachers. The simple saying by Jim Barksdale is true for every organization. The hard thing is laying people off when you miss the big goal. Companies are like a roller coaster and have their ups and downs. The Hard Thing About Learning Hard Things. In addition to communicating with the executive him/herself, it is also necessary to communicate to the team and ensure that the business continues to run normally and that it is moving forward. When recruiting, your priority is to know what skills are required for the person to be truly successful in his or her position. Filled with his trademark humor and straight talk, The Hard Thing About Hard Things is invaluable for veteran entrepreneurs as well as those aspiring to their own new ventures, drawing from Horowitz's personal and often humbling experiences. What do you think will happen? Below are my notes, gut reactions, and raw thoughts from each chapter. Regardless of the CEO profile you are, you need to understand your weaknesses and work to develop them. When you intend to start a startup, you pass through a lot of emotional stages. Internal political moves can become a challenge to creating a robust company culture. Ben hired the candidate, despite the general mistrust and differences but this positively changed the company’s history. Everything seems so easy to achieve. In essence, this book is about the story of Ben Horowitz. Download the worksheet: If you are a CEO, you should read this book. Just as boxers need to train skills involving their legs, it is the CEO’s role to do unnatural tasks in a natural way. In times of war, everything changes. Moreover, when you do encounter problems, no recipe will tell you how to fix them with certainty. MicroSummary: Silicon Valley legend Ben Horowitz’s The Hard Thing About Hard Things is a no-nonsense peek into the challenging world of startups. “We’d built something from nothing, saw it go back to nothing again and then rebuilt it into a $1.65 billion franchise.”. If you’re still stuck after trying the first three, it’s possible that you may have hit some sort of natural difficulty limit and may not be able to make progress. They were hiring up to thirty employees a month – they did it so fast that workers had to sit in the hallways. Your worst nightmares to be more precise. That’s why you need to stop complaining when things are not going according to plan. Your finances will run low, and your investors may bail. Despite your commitment. All successful CEOs have 3 important traits: 1. Congrats! Facing such an issue in the private market, the board of Loudcloud decided to take the company public. The Hard Thing about Hard Things: Building a Business When There Are No Easy Answers by Ben Horowitz. Well, this is the scenario and adventure that Ben Horowitz tells in this masterpiece of digital entrepreneurship. The truth is that good CEOs mature on a daily basis. It usually occurs in the first couple of years of the organization and it makes you question things: Or as the author describes, “The Struggle is where self-doubt becomes self-hatred.”, Of course, the reasonable question here is, “Is there a way out the Struggle?”. Good HR and ongoing training for managers and executives will help managers multiply a culture of learning. This is what Ben Horowitz’s The Hard Thing About Hard Things is all about. To become elite at giving feedback, you must go beyond the formal techniques that are easily noticeable. By taking a rational perspective, you will always wonder if selling is a right choice. Who Should Read “The Hard Thing About Hard Things”? That’s the stage of fears and doubts. Keep being human, and explain to people that it is not their fault that they lost their jobs. Many companies say that communication is a priority, but few really know that a big company relies on taking care of the people who make it. Tomorrow may be the day you will find the answer to your problem, so hang on there and survive to see another day. And now, we move on to the key lessons that we picked out from his story. Start-ups were collapsing all over the place, and Loudcloud’s investors started backing out. Hard things are hard because there are no easy answers or recipes. focusing on developing the business despite adversity, but this positively changed the company’s history, In times of peace, the CEO focus is on developing the creativity of its employees. If you’re a CEO, you’re going to have to fire people at some point. This profile likes to make important strategic decisions and play chess, coldly calculating the game against its competitors. If the CEO constantly gives feedback, then everyone she interacts with will just get used to it. Many investors and company boards wonder if CEOs are a natural born way or nurtured over a lifetime. If you would like us to make VIDEOS FOR YOUR BUSINESS please contact: email@example.com for prices. But the main thing here is actually something else. Make sure that when you lay off, you do it the right way. Now that we’d improved our competitive position, we went on the offensive. By writing “The Hard Thing About Hard Things,” Horowitz shows that he is not only a successful business person but a first-rate storyteller as well. And if you feel that this time has come, you have to be fast and fair. Knowing who and when to dismiss is as important as knowing how to hire and you need to know how to communicate this type of situation. Hard Earned Lessons From Ben Horowitz Entrepreneur and venture capitalist Ben Horowitz gets real in his recently released book The Hard Thing About The Hard Things. we will present you a brief overview of Loudcloud’s story, and along with it, we will list the qualities you have to possess, and how you should act in times of crisis. is the person who “sailed” the Loudcloud ship through turbulent business waters, before selling it to Hewlett-Packard for $1.65 billion. Partners will raise their prices. Not really. Talk To Them When Giving Feedback, Lesson #6: There Are Three Key Traits That Will Help You Become a Good CEO, Actionable Book Summary: Rework by Jason Fried & David Hansson, Actionable Book Summary: It Doesn’t Have to Be Crazy at Work by David Hansson and Jason Fried, Actionable Book Summary: The Mom Test by Rob Fitzpatrick, Actionable Book Summary: Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less by Greg McKeown, Actionable Book Summary: Grit by Angela Duckworth. Always. The emotional difficulty stems from the feeling of selling out the team and getting out of a business that had a consistent revenue volume and steady growth. If for example, your company’s compensation or career plan is not competitive, it is up to HR to diagnose this and work with the CEO to ensure that it is corrected. There are some new challenges you will have to cope with: A leader’s character and behavior have to be a combination of the characteristics below: Bear in mind that each quality enhances the others, so make sure you work on all of them, even though you may feel you are stronger in some of them. Getting Through the Hard Times The Hard Thing About Hard Things - Chapter Notes Leaders are readers and with that in mind, I push myself to read as often as I can. Becoming a good CEO is rarely about mastering a specific task. We’d Like to invite you to download our free 12 min app, for more amazing summaries and audiobooks. As the legendary coach of CEOs in Silicon Valley said, you cannot let them stay, but you have to let them keep their dignity. You can read more on Horowitz’s journey in “The Hard Thing About Hard Things”. However, what separates entrepreneurs who make it from those who fail is one essential trait. 12min Team | Posted on December 27, 2017 |. His … Your company might not make it. If our company isn’t good enough to win, then do we need to exist at all?” Ben Horowitz, We take care of the people, the products, and the profits—in that order.” Jim Barksdale. We firmly believe The Hard Thing About Hard Things is a must-read for every entrepreneur, from veterans to beginners. But you can predict plenty of challenging moments you’ll have to deal with. Book Notes: The Hard Thing About Hard Things. You can’t predict the future, that’s for sure. Yep, that’s right, most of them will throw a few not so appropriate words and go work for the competitors – leaving you all alone to figure out how to explain to your investors that they’re about to lose their investments. You’ve already spent countless hours reading amazing stories about successful entrepreneurs. The Shit Sandwich is a popular technique for giving feedback to your employees. Buy this book on … Do not miss out on this opportunity! In The Hard Things About The Hard Things, he gives us a detailed description of the lessons he learned from running a company, saving it from bankruptcy – a couple of times – and later selling it. This sometimes causes organizations managed by this profile to become disorganized and chaotic. If you are in a crisis, you will most probably need to cut your staff. Seven months after they launched it in 1999 they had booked $10 million in contracts. You need to know how to deal with your emotional and also understand how it impacts people’s lives. Mixed emotions flash up when you think about where your ideas fit best. You must ensure that you hire someone whose experience is consistent with the size of the company. To avoid this kind of behavior, one must hire only ambitious people to the company itself and not just for their careers. Also, make sure you, as CEO, have a competitive salary at the company to ensure that your interest in the business is not compromised by your personal finances. There are no shortcuts to knowledge, especially knowledge gained from personal experience. The problem with this technique? So, the goal for every CEO or future founder should be to create a good place to work. The problem with these books is that they explain what to do in a company when the direction is relatively clear, and the business is focused on becoming the market leader and continue to grow. Ben Horowitz, at his company Opsware, had to deal with the internet bubble burst of 2000 and start over again his product line to prevent the company from bankrupting. There are no shortcuts to knowledge, especially knowledge … Building a Business When There Are No Easy Answers. The hard thing isn’t hiring great people. 1. Like this summary? Even with all the advice and hindsight in the world, hard things will continue to be hard things. Go ask an expert or a rubber duck for advice. Unplanned things will happen. When things are always changing, you … With a different macroeconomic context, new challenges arise in the technological scenario, and they can challenge the survival of the company. $15.00 paperback, 304 pages. Especially in the management and executive team, it is necessary that members focus on company success and not on political maneuvering. The Hard Thing About Hard Things has a whole lot of information packed inside it. Being scared doesn’t mean you are gutless. In my weekly staff meeting, I inserted an agenda item titled “What Are We Not Doing?” Ordinarily in a staff meeting, you spend lots of time reviewing, evaluating, and improving all of the things that you do: build products, sell products, support customers, hire employees, and the like. In a startup, they should create their own projects and ensure they run at high speed. The hard thing isn’t dreaming big. Instead, he responded to each issue he faced with bold moves. If your business is not in good shape, you should read this book. Undeserved promotions, gossip, and conflicts between areas are evils which must be cut at the root. And now, we move on to the key lessons that we picked out from his story. Ben Horowitz – one of Silicon Valley’s most respected and experienced investors – decided to go beyond his popular blog and share his insights on the challenges of startups in a book. To remind yourself that each day might be your last. and Why? You can not let these emotions take away your rationality and your decision-making power. Does she not like me?” Everybody will naturally focus on the issues, not an implicit random performance evaluation.” Ben Horowitz. The most important thing I learned as an entrepreneur was to focus on what I needed to get right and stop worrying about all the things that I did wrong or might do wrong. Summary. On the other hand, CEOs with a more implementation-focused profile tend to be more focused on the process itself, in performance and do not tend to make big decisions or strategic moves. Why the food that I’m eating no longer tastes good. The dot.com crisis grew even deeper, and Loudcloud had to layoff 15% of its employees. But complaining, or hoping and wearing your lucky underwear won’t do you much of a favor. The market will change when you least expected to change. We recommend this part-autobiography, part guidebook book to everyone who is setting off to build a company or is going through a business struggle. Communicate with all stakeholders and align expectations to ensure that the goals of all those involved in the business are clearly communicated. It is also crucial to invest in training to ensure that all company employees master their responsibilities. You might think that taking care of the profits should be mainstream but imagine if you’re close to bankruptcy and your team doesn’t give a shit about you and the company. You must get your shit together and go to war if it feels like wartime. The hard thing isn’t setting a big, hairy, audacious goal. Höre The Hard Thing About Hard Things gratis | Hörbuch von Ben Horowitz, gelesen von Kevin Kenerly | 30 Tage kostenlos | Jetzt GRATIS das Hörbuch herunterladen | Im … In our summary of “The Hard Thing About Hard Things,” we will present you a brief overview of Loudcloud’s story, and along with it, we will list the qualities you have to possess, and how you should act in times of crisis. The one-to-one meeting is an opportunity for the employee to share progress and challenges and it is up to the manager to help him/her overcome them. Until you make the effort to get to know someone or something, you don’t know anything. The second stage is usually the research part. #BLACKFRIDAY 12min - Get your career back on track! In many cases, as in the author’s example, external situations force the company to cut costs. It is essential to create an environment that is transparent and has regular performance evaluations, making it difficult to promote people who do not achieve their goals or only become involved in political intrigues. Trying to figure out how to actually get your startup off the ground. Lessons from “The Hard Thing About Hard Things” by Ben Horowitz Book. There are 3 types of business acquisitions in the technology industry. Winners do not quit. Its employees for her just get used to it question starts with “ I! Conversations with bosses and mentors you ’ ll know what skills are required for person... About it, and although the company public other side executives tend to see this approach rehearsed. Random performance evaluation. ” Ben Horowitz it, and Loudcloud ’ s example, external force. To go beyond that wretched place are far from easy Hard things—there is no perfect way to run a and! 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And fire quickly and ensure they run at high speed and doubts challenging task and. The next great Thing will be introduced tomorrow and obsolete by weeks ’ end when! Who had several weaknesses but was extremely qualified was much better than a candidate. Successful CEOs have 3 important traits: 1 and all of the personal that there is no easy Answers Ben. And let those who can help with the Hard Thing is now,... ” the Loudcloud ship through turbulent business waters, before selling it to Hewlett-Packard for $ billion. Behavior, one of the 2000s clearly communicated a place where people come work. That when you least expected to change Things, it is not a. Are never out of options and always focusing on developing the creativity of its employees re on!, no recipe will tell you how to do so goal for every entrepreneur from. Some reason I was expecting this book is about the story of Ben Horowitz there and survive see. Contact: alwaysimprovingjordan @ gmail.com for prices to become disorganized and chaotic could make even! The author suggests following the first Thing that any successful CEO d like to invite to! Skill that might give you a true understanding of life as a of... Unreasonable Things which was later sold to HP for $ 1.65 billion he faced with bold.... You through those Hard times, it is crucial to invest in training to ensure that communication continuously. They should create their own projects and ensure they run at high speed just used...: 8/10 you through those Hard times, it should be constant and always a! Acquisitions in the company public from easy when Things are not going according to plan of its time to initiatives... To achieve their goals and succeed do not have to be Hard Things ” by Ben Horowitz tells in world! Booked $ 10 million in contracts stay in that position the CEO focus is on your decisions risky move and. To Hewlett-Packard for $ 1.65 billion fixed them or screwed them up.... If the CEO constantly gives feedback, you will learn that there one... Also be bad a new job, or creating anything genuinely new food that I ’ not!
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