Podcast & Book Reviews

October 11, 2021

Book Review | That Will Never Work by Marc Randolph

By Jared Tilley | Senior Investment Analyst at NAOS Asset Management

“What are you watching on Netflix?” has become a common question, whether you are at a barbeque, first date or even reading someone’s profile. Which shouldn’t be a surprise given ~65% of Australian households are Netflix subscribers. It’s fair to say that most people could easily name several movies or series that appear on Netflix’s menu however how well do you really know the global technology company that currently has 209 million subscribers and a market capitalisation of USD$267 billion.

That Will Never Work provides an insightful look into how a company took a simple idea and built a global business. Marc Randolph (co-founder and author) walks through the key milestones the business achieves right through to the IPO. Throughout the journey, there seems to be more downs then ups as capital is hard to come by as the founders (Marc and Reed Hastings, who is still co-CEO) struggle to find supporters in a market dominated by Blockbuster and VHS tapes.

Beyond the amazing entrepreneurial story of Netflix, Randolph tackles some big topics including team work, what is success plus how and where to begin.

Key quotes

  • They say the best ideas are born of necessity.
  • “Nobody knows anything.” - William Goldman
  • We were confusing customers, giving them too many options.
  • It pays to be the person who won’t take no for an answer, since in business, no doesn’t always mean no.
  • The most powerful step that anyone can take to turn their dreams into reality is a simple one: you just need to start. That only real way to find out if your idea is a good one is to do it. You’ll learn more in one hour of doing something than in a lifetime of thinking about it.

Link to book 

Beyond the book, Randolph has created a podcast which is worth a listen.

Finally, I am a big believer that books should be shared and not left on a book shelf to gather dust. So a small reward for anyone who made it this far, if you are interested in reading the above book, please reach out and I’ll organise delivery


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