Lost and Founder by Rand Fishkin – Book Review

I recently started trying to read one book each month that had something (however loosely) to do with bettering myself professionally, and I figured I’d write about them here. Somehow, when I went looking a couple weeks ago, the book Lost and Founder by Rand Fishkin popped up. Curious, I used an Audible credit and started listening.

I found the book surprisingly interesting. It’s not that I expected it to be boring, but I have never worked for a startup, and have never been an entrepreneur. But despite that, I found the book truly engaging. It didn’t hurt that the audio book was narrated by Rand himself, so all of the emotion from his personal experiences came out in his voice. I think this made the book feel much more personal.

At times, the story is almost painful. Again, this is furthered by the emotion in Rand’s voice as he detailed his own shortcomings while attempting to grow his startup. However, it’s these personal moments that allow the reader to connect, and allowed me to truly enjoy the book. I found myself feeling remorse along side him on multiple occasions. And most of all, I found myself cheering for his business.

So what did I take away from this book? In short, I don’t want to be a CEO of a startup. Don’t get me wrong, I have immense respect for those willing to take on such responsibility. But the uncertainty goes against my cautious nature. I also learned way more about startups, funding, and risks taken for growth that I ever imagined. These aspects were intriguing to me. The way he outlines how the value of a company changes for both the executives, and the employees was well thought out, and informative. I also liked his insights into management. Through his transparency about both his successes and mistakes, a lot can be learned in how we think of our leadership style.

Overall, I would strongly encourage anyone who is fascinated by the startup world to give this one a read (or better yet, a listen). I would also recommend anyone who is trying to learn more about leadership to give this book a go.