Startup Leadership

​“Recommended for every founder to improve the trajectory of your success.”

—Rich Karlgaard, Forbes Publisher

​“Provides aspiring and experienced entrepreneurs powerful tools.”

—Brian O’Kelley, AppNexus Founder and CEO

​“An instant classic.”

—Ricardo Levy, Stanford University Professor & Executive

​“A home run.”

—Michael Dewar, Amazon reviewer

“Derek has emerged as one of the foremost leaders today for entrepreneurs.”

—Jeri Zerr, Amazon reviewer (top 500)

Startup Leadership

A “Top 10 Best Leadership Book” by Time and Inc. Magazine

Find success sooner—and avoid the mistakes that have confounded thousands of “geniuses” (even Steve Jobs): Become the founder your business needs by combining the opposing natures of the Entrepreneur and the Leader.

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About the Book

Why do so many entrepreneurs found innovative enterprises, only to find themselves failing as leaders once the business gets off the ground? Because, according to Derek Lidow, being an entrepreneur is fundamentally different from being a business leader.

An entrepreneur's goal is making his or her vision a reality—a basically selfish, though beneficial, act. A leader, on the other hand, focuses on others, forging individuals with differing wants, needs, and visions into a winning team. In Startup Leadership, entrepreneur and professor Derek Lidow outlines exactly how one can balance these two opposing natures and provides you with the skills and tools to become an Entrepreneurial Leader.

  • Based on Lidow's popular and well-respected course at Princeton University
  • Developed out of extensive research and real-world experience
  • Distills Lidow's insights into best practices for growing with the company you created
  • Prepares to avoid the unseen traps that trip up many entrepreneurs

“Ideas and charismatic leaders come and go. But what remains constant is the vital stuff—in Lidow’s book.”
—Marty Johnson, Founder of Isles Inc., and Princeton visiting professor

With a unique approach based on extensive research and real-world application, Startup Leadership is a roadmap for innovators who seek to become Entrepreneurial Leaders who can successfully lead their team, enterprise, and themselves to lasting success.

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Derek Lidow is right—entrepreneurs, not mere ideas, lead companies to their full potential. Lidow puts this powerful idea to work, alongside the full breadth and depth of his own experiences running growth companies, in Startup Leadership. I recommend this book for every founder—regardless of your stage—because Lidow's invaluable insights, personal leadership strategies, and framework will help you improve the trajectory of your success.

—Rich Karlgaard, publisher, Forbes magazine; board director; investor; entrepreneur; and author, The Soft Edge

Trust me because I’ve seen and done virtually everything that’s possible in business today. Whether you’re an investor, board member, CEO, accelerator, small business owner, or aspiring entrepreneur, Startup Leadership is mandatory reading. Thanks to the smart and detailed advice of serial success story Derek Lidow, the book will help de-risk virtually any enterprise. It will also expand your levels of innovation level, profits, culture and success. I recommend you get a copy—and give a copy to someone who needs it.

—Bruce Hack, advisor, angel investor, board director, and former CEO, Vivendi Games

Startup Leadership is the handbook for leadership all entrepreneurs should read while scaling their business.

—Chris Kuenne, founder-entrepreneur, Rosetta

Aligning your ducks in a row, understating a venture is a marathon with hundreds of sprints in between, and knowing how to make other people feel successful are not only applicable to founders of start ups but are values of life we should all integrate. Read so you too can lead!

—Shikha Uberoi, founder/CEO of Impact Media360, executive producer of The Real Deal, and co-founder of India at

The entrepreneur's journey is often misunderstood as an idea coming to life. In fact, it is entrepreneurs themselves who must learn to create and lead an organization. Startup Leadership provides aspiring and experienced entrepreneurs powerful tools to grow as leaders.

—Brian O’Kelley, founder and CEO, AppNexus

This is not another book on how to build a successful startup. Lidow demystifies relationship building, negotiation, and vision creation with clarity and balance. He shows what it takes to become a more confident leader who builds startups with less risk and better outcomes. Your transformation into a better-equipped entrepreneurial leader begins now.

—Natasha Gajewski, founder and CEO, Simple Health Inc.

Finally, from the true-life experiences of a highly-successful entrepreneur, comes a how-to book that is more than an academic compendium. Derek Lidow captures the essence of the leadership qualities needed for success, not just in the formation and early stages of a venture, but along the path to a significant stand-alone business. This hands-on book is an instant classic.

—Ricardo B. Levy, professor, Stanford University, and author, Letters to a Young Entrepreneur

A must-read for aspiring and experienced entrepreneurs!

—Jeremey Donovan, author, How to Deliver a TED Talk

This book fills an important gap among books about entrepreneurship, and Derek Lidow shows what it really takes to make a successful startup. Startup Leadership focuses on the essential, yet elusive, leadership elements required to navigate a venture from idea to self-sustainability. Future entrepreneurs will be thankful to have this companion along for the entire journey.

—John Danner, professor, Haas School of Business, UC Berkeley

Finally, an easy-to-read and digestible blueprint for entrepreneurs that will empower them to build and lead sustainable enterprises. Lidow encapsulates years of trial and error and teaches what’s required for successful entrepreneurship with a clear methodology.

—Jeanne Gray, founder and CEO,

If any book contains the “secrets” to entrepreneurial success, this is it! I recommend Startup Leadership to both budding and proven entrepreneurs.

—Greg Olsen, founder of Epitax, Sensors Unlimited

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Coming in 2017, BUILDING ON BEDROCK: The Truth About Entrepreneurs

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