Very concise review of the book Lets build a company (7 minutes reviews of Indian startup books- a series)

  • Authors: Harpreet Grover and Vibhore Goyal
  • Pages: 256 (paperback), Printed in Oct 2019
  • Languages: English

“Hard things about hard things but for Indian startups”

Objective assessment of the book:

  • Value for money: 10/10
  • Cost: 150 to 200 INR (PB), available on Kindle (79 INR)
  • Length: 256 pages (PB)
  • Time investment: Low ( can read in a single day/weekend easily 4 to 6 hours)
  • Focus area in startup context: End-to end, practical, based on real life
  • Readability: High (10/10)
  • Talks of real life experiences? : Yes (10/10)
  • Teaches concept (s) in detailed with focus? : No, focus is on day to day startup life and end to end journey of the company
  • Writing/ narration style: Very easy to read and understand, honest, personal
  • Would you want to read again and again?- Absolutely
  • Practical in Indian context: Very relevant for Indian startups
  • Concept heavy vs based on practical experiences/advises: Practical advises with introduction to concepts
  • USP: chapters on company culture and people management
  • Prior startup specific knowledge required?- No (anyone can read, everyone should read)
  • Recommended for: Anyone who is interested in Indian start-ups
  • Curing the smartness syndrome (hiring smart people and solving exotic complex problems as opposed to simple problems generating sustained revenue)
  • How co-founder dynamics is analogous to marriage ( clear division of labor, ask/take opinion/ hear the other person but final decision to one spouse/co-founder, uphold dignity in front of a third person, never disagree in front of others, how families compound marriage/startups, unable to speak mind leads to divorce/startup-failure)
  • The difference between startup and corporate work and work cultures
  • The review system and growth plan they discuss in the book
  • The seven values with rationale behind all of them
  • The nine points of leadership code
  • Role of families in startups (spouse and parents, how they can make or break startups)
  • The USP of this book were chapters related to hiring/ managing and firing people and The WHY and the HOW of company/work culture ( Common values à Consistent behavior à Company culture) and employee engagement which are best explained in the book in a very actionable way and implementable both in startups and corporate teams
  • The hard times and day to day difficulties of running startup operations, existential crises and comeback
  • Dealing with VC and other investors
  • The exit- selling of the company and intricacies thereof
  • Hard things about hard things but for Indian startups
  • I felt like I am talking to the founder himself.
  • Beautifully written, honestly accounted.
  • The soul of the book lies in the approachable tone and and irrefutably good take aways.
  • The candor is surprising! There is a lot of insider information that people rarely get to know.
  • A great story book and manual at the same time
  • Authentic to its journey
  • The chapter around the relationship with his wife really stuck with me.
  • Information about US startups is so overpowering that it gives Indian entrepreneurs “valley-sightedness“ but this book is on Indian startup specifics



Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store
Aditi Sheth

Aditi Sheth

MBBS, Aggregate reports manager based in Bangalore, India, Decent and ambitious, curious reader