Thinks 392

FT reviews “The Power Law” by Sebastian Mallaby: “The question is, as Mallaby writes, “Did the VCs create the success, or did they merely show up for it?” In the early days, they played a big role. There were fewer investors then willing to stake money on risky ideas, and funds often worked “with entrepreneurs in an entrepreneurial way”, as Tom Perkins of Kleiner Perkins phrased it. In other words, they dispensed a lot of advice. Mallaby attributes this alchemy to a “combination of laid-back creativity and driving commercial ambition” boosted by “a frank lust for riches”. A key venture capital insight was to invest in founders as much as technology, since the latter was impossible to assess. It was easier to identify individuals, often ambitious immigrants, who would not tolerate failure.”

WSJ, in a review of “Get It Done” by Ayelet Fishbach: “According to Ms. Fishbach, an effective goal should “pull us toward our ultimate desires, energizing us to put in the work we need to do to get there.” It should be ambitious, measurable and, to the extent possible, intrinsically motivating. Suppose you want to start exercising more. To say “I’d like to run a 5k in 30 minutes or less by June” sets a more effective goal than simply saying “I’d like to start running.””

David Perell: “Make One Person Responsible: If you want to get something done, it’s tempting to put a huge number of people in charge. But often, when too many people are in charge, nobody accepts responsibility. This saying is illustrative: “A dog with two owners dies of hunger.”

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Rajesh Jain

An Entrepreneur based in Mumbai, India.