It has been more than four years since "The Hard Thing About Hard Things" was published and it remains – including in the eyes of many of us at TechCrunch – one of the most popular books in the world. the best, most authentic and most informative business ever written. It's partly for this reason that we are so pleased to announce that its author, Ben Horowitz, co-founder of the venture capital firm Andreessen Howoritz, will come to Disrupt in September.
Why do people care about Horowitz's management advice, as opposed to many other venture capitalists? Much of this boils down to his mining experiences and his candid descriptions of his ups and downs on the job. Horowitz, for example, was the co-founder and CEO of Opsware (formerly Loudcloud), which was bought by Hewlett-Packard in 2007 for $ 1.6 billion. But as Horowitz has very well explained publicly, Opsware has appeared more than once, including when one of its biggest customers closed down as a result of the implosion of the internet bubble.
Horowitz also managed several product divisions at Netscape Communications while the company was still very young and already listed. (It was surprisingly interesting 16 months after it was created.) Horowitz was a free-kick to upset Netscape's young co-founder, Marc Andreessen, after complaining that Andreesseen had too much given Netscape's strategy to a reporter before a public launch that Horowitz and others were planning. (Andreessen's answer: "The next time you will do the interview yourself.")
It's funny now, but at the time, Horowitz – already married and father of three – thought he had to find another job.
Indeed, much of Horowitz's call to the founders is that, given his career, he knows what he's talking about. Horowitz does not do anything either. While many coaches and management books can be abstract and theoretical – even spongy – Horowitz goes straight to the point. He knows what CEOs mess up most often, how to think about demotion versus layoffs, and when and how to give raises. Everything is related to a concept that Horowitz advises entrepreneurs to learn: they must take into consideration every point of view when they make a decision, so that they can see the decision through the eyes of the company and not just the person most directly concerned. impacted by it.
This is not easy to do, especially since leaders often make decisions under heavy pressure, as Horowitz willingly admits when he offers management advice . But it is also crucial to manage a healthy organization.
This is because of Horowitz's insight and even more so that we are very much looking forward to discussing with him this fall of entrepreneurship, including its evolution over the nine years following the foundation of Andreessen Horowitz. evolves by his side.
If you are a founder, or if you plan to become one, you will not want to miss this conversation. To purchase tickets for the show, which will take place in San Francisco from September 5th to September 7th, you can click here.