The Hard Thing About Hard Things Book Summary - The Hard Thing About Hard Things Book explained in key points
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The Hard Thing About Hard Things summary

Ben Horowitz

Building A Business When There Are No Easy Answers

4.4 (356 ratings)
28 mins

What is The Hard Thing About Hard Things about?

These blinks explain why the job of a CEO is among the toughest and loneliest in the world, and how you can survive all the stress and heartache involved.

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    The Hard Thing About Hard Things
    summarized in 13 key ideas

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    Key idea 1 of 13

    Every CEO must deal with the pressures and responsibilities that come with running a company.

    Everyone who founds a company or runs one as the CEO has dreams. Usually these dreams revolve around building something beautiful and world-changing while having fun and making a lot of money.

    Unfortunately, no company progresses smoothly along this path, as crises are an inevitable part of building a business; there are simply too many variables and things to go wrong for smooth sailing.

    For example, every company is somewhat at the mercy of “macro” issues like financial crises and collapses which can scare away investors, as well as smaller “micro” issues such as making a wrong hiring decision or having your best customer go bankrupt.

    This is where all CEOs meet The Struggle, which occurs when dreams of success meet reality.

    The Struggle is an inevitable part of being in charge of a company, and it consists of the stress and the impossible decisions that come with the territory. The stress and weight of The Struggle will probably affect the CEO’s entire life, from her mental and physical well-being to her career choices and social relationships.

    All this makes The Struggle extremely draining, but it is also where greatness arises. Ultimately, the CEO is responsible for negotiating the challenges the company faces, and thus it is she who will get credit for the company’s successes or be fired for its failures.

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    About the Author

    Ben Horowitz is a founding partner at venture capital firm Andreessen Horowitz. Previously, he was a co-founder and CEO at the IT company Opsware, which he eventually sold to Hewlett-Packard in 2007 for $1.6 billion. His blog has over 10 million readers.

    Who should read The Hard Thing About Hard Things?

    • Present or future CEOs and founders
    • Anyone who wants to understand how businesses are run successfully
    • Anyone who is ever in a position where they have to hire or fire someone

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