7 lessons for CEOs from @bhorowitz book: The Hard Thing About Hard Things

  1. When raising money, look for a market of one. You only need one investor to say yes, so it’s best to ignore the other thirty that say no.
  2. If you’re going to eat shit don’t nibble. Give bad news or take pain all in one go rather than drag out over months.
  3. Figuring out the right product is the innovators job, not the customer’s job. Innovators need a combination of knowledge, skill and courage to ignore the data and give the customer what he didn’t know he wanted.
  4. Startup CEOs should not play the odds. You have no choice but find the answer, so don’t hedge yourself.
  5. Product is king. If you’re being beaten on product you need to knuckle down and fix it, rather than sell harder or redesign the organogram. There are no silver bullets for fixing bad product. Only lead bullets.
  6. Managing by numbers is like painting by numbers. Strictly for amateurs.
  7. Lazy people decisions result in “management debt”, for example: Two-in-a-box (co-managers), overcompensating an employee, no performance review system. Management debt is always repaid, with interest. Avoid at all costs.

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