That Will Never Work Book Summary - That Will Never Work Book explained in key points

That Will Never Work summary

Marc Randolph

Brief summary

That Will Never Work by Marc Randolph is an inspiring book that chronicles the early days of Netflix. It offers valuable lessons on entrepreneurship, innovation, and the power of daring to pursue seemingly impossible ideas.

Give Feedback
Table of Contents

    That Will Never Work
    Summary of key ideas

    From Idea to Reality

    In That Will Never Work, Marc Randolph, the co-founder and first CEO of Netflix, takes us on a journey from the inception of the idea for Netflix to its eventual success. The book begins with Randolph's early career, where he worked in a variety of jobs, including a door-to-door salesman and a computer engineer. He shares how his diverse experiences helped shape his entrepreneurial mindset and prepared him for the challenges of starting a business.

    Randolph then delves into the birth of Netflix. The idea came to him when he was charged a $40 late fee for returning a rented VHS tape. This incident sparked the concept of a mail-order DVD rental service, which would later evolve into the streaming giant we know today. He discusses the process of developing the idea, testing its feasibility, and the initial challenges they faced in getting the business off the ground.

    Overcoming Obstacles

    As the narrative progresses, Randolph candidly shares the numerous obstacles they encountered in the early days of Netflix. From technical glitches and logistical nightmares to financial struggles and fierce competition, the company faced a myriad of challenges. He emphasizes the importance of resilience and adaptability in overcoming these hurdles, highlighting how they constantly pivoted their business model to stay afloat.

    One of the most significant challenges Netflix faced was the battle with Blockbuster, the reigning video rental giant at the time. Randolph recounts the intense competition and the pivotal moment when Blockbuster had the opportunity to acquire Netflix. Despite the offer being turned down, the company's survival was far from guaranteed, and Randolph provides a gripping account of the high-stakes decisions they had to make.

    Lessons in Leadership and Innovation

    Throughout That Will Never Work, Randolph shares valuable insights into leadership and innovation. He discusses the importance of building a strong team, fostering a culture of innovation, and making bold decisions. He also emphasizes the significance of customer feedback and data-driven insights in shaping the company's direction.

    Furthermore, Randolph provides a behind-the-scenes look at some of Netflix's most significant innovations, such as the transition from DVD rentals to streaming, the development of their recommendation algorithm, and the decision to produce original content. He explains how these strategic moves not only helped the company stay ahead of the curve but also transformed the entire entertainment industry.

    Legacy and Reflection

    In the latter part of the book, Randolph reflects on his time at Netflix and the lessons he learned from the experience. He discusses the bittersweet moment when he stepped down as CEO, acknowledging that while it was difficult to let go, it was the right decision for the company's future. He also shares his thoughts on the evolving nature of entrepreneurship and the qualities that define successful entrepreneurs.

    In conclusion, That Will Never Work is a compelling account of the birth and growth of one of the most influential companies of our time. Through his personal journey, Marc Randolph offers valuable lessons in entrepreneurship, resilience, and innovation, making it an inspiring read for aspiring business leaders and anyone interested in the story behind Netflix's remarkable success.

    Give Feedback
    How do we create content on this page?
    More knowledge in less time
    Read or listen
    Read or listen
    Get the key ideas from nonfiction bestsellers in minutes, not hours.
    Find your next read
    Find your next read
    Get book lists curated by experts and personalized recommendations.
    Shortcasts
    Shortcasts New
    We’ve teamed up with podcast creators to bring you key insights from podcasts.

    What is That Will Never Work about?

    That Will Never Work by Marc Randolph is an inspiring memoir that chronicles the early days of Netflix and the challenges faced by its co-founder. With honesty and humor, Randolph shares the ups and downs of building a revolutionary business in the face of skepticism and doubt. It's a must-read for anyone with big ambitions and a belief in their own crazy ideas.

    That Will Never Work Review

    That Will Never Work (2019) by Marc Randolph is a captivating memoir that takes readers behind the scenes of the birth of Netflix and the challenges faced along the way. Here's why this book is worth reading:

    • With honest storytelling and insightful anecdotes, Randolph gives a firsthand account of the struggles and triumphs that shaped one of the most influential companies in the entertainment industry.
    • The book offers valuable lessons on innovation and entrepreneurship, encouraging readers to embrace failure and think outside the box.
    • Through its engaging narrative and practical wisdom, the book will leave you inspired and motivated to pursue your own creative endeavors.

    Who should read That Will Never Work?

    • Entrepreneurs and aspiring business owners looking for inspiration and practical advice
    • Individuals interested in the behind-the-scenes story of a successful startup
    • Readers who enjoy personal memoirs that blend storytelling with valuable lessons

    About the Author

    Marc Randolph is an entrepreneur, advisor, and author. He is best known as the co-founder and first CEO of Netflix. Randolph played a key role in the development and success of the company, helping to shape its innovative business model. In addition to his work at Netflix, he has been involved in several other successful startups and has served as a mentor and investor for numerous entrepreneurs. Randolph's book, "That Will Never Work," provides a firsthand account of the early days of Netflix and offers valuable insights into the world of entrepreneurship.

    Categories with That Will Never Work

    Book summaries like That Will Never Work

    People ❤️ Blinkist 
    Sven O.

    It's highly addictive to get core insights on personally relevant topics without repetition or triviality. Added to that the apps ability to suggest kindred interests opens up a foundation of knowledge.

    Thi Viet Quynh N.

    Great app. Good selection of book summaries you can read or listen to while commuting. Instead of scrolling through your social media news feed, this is a much better way to spend your spare time in my opinion.

    Jonathan A.

    Life changing. The concept of being able to grasp a book's main point in such a short time truly opens multiple opportunities to grow every area of your life at a faster rate.

    Renee D.

    Great app. Addicting. Perfect for wait times, morning coffee, evening before bed. Extremely well written, thorough, easy to use.

    People also liked these summaries

    4.7 Stars
    Average ratings on iOS and Google Play
    30 Million
    Downloads on all platforms
    10+ years
    Experience igniting personal growth
    Powerful ideas from top nonfiction

    Try Blinkist to get the key ideas from 7,000+ bestselling nonfiction titles and podcasts. Listen or read in just 15 minutes.

    Start your free trial

    That Will Never Work FAQs 

    What is the main message of That Will Never Work?

    The main message of That Will Never Work is to embrace risk and pursue unconventional ideas for entrepreneurial success.

    How long does it take to read That Will Never Work?

    The reading time for That Will Never Work varies depending on the reader's speed, but it typically takes several hours. The Blinkist summary can be read in just 15 minutes.

    Is That Will Never Work a good book? Is it worth reading?

    That Will Never Work is definitely worth reading. It offers valuable insights and inspiration for aspiring entrepreneurs.

    Who is the author of That Will Never Work?

    Marc Randolph is the author of That Will Never Work.

    What to read after That Will Never Work?

    If you're wondering what to read next after That Will Never Work, here are some recommendations we suggest:
    • Coaching for Performance by Sir John Whitmore
    • Influence by Robert B. Cialdini
    • The Trust Edge# by David Horsager
    • The Pyramid Principle by Barbara Minto
    • Made to Stick by Chip Heath and Dan Heath
    • The Presentation Secrets of Steve Jobs by Carmine Gallo
    • Selling the Invisible by Harry Beckwith
    • You Can Negotiate Anything by Herb Cohen
    • Never Eat Alone by Keith Ferrazzi
    • Pitch Anything by Oren Klaff