David Senra

Learn from history's greatest founders. Every week I read a biography of an entrepreneur and tell you what I learned on Founders podcast
March 3, 2024

Winning: The Unforgiving Race to Greatness

My top 10 highlights from the book: 1. Everyone wanted to be like Mike. Mike did not want to be like anyone else. 2. Stop adding. Start deleting. Winning demands total focus. 3. Their minds were stronger than their feelings. 4. You can't buy a map to the top. 5. Motivation is entry level. 6. Every great creation and invention started w...
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March 2, 2024

Relentless: From Good to Great to Unstoppable

My top 10 highlights from the book: 1. You can't excel at anything before you train your mind. Mental dominance is what ultimately makes you unstoppable. 2. If one thing separated Michael from every other player, it was his stunning ability to block out everything and everyone else. He was able to shut out everything except his mission...
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February 22, 2024

Joseph Duveen: Robber Baron Art Dealer

My top 10 highlights from The Days of Duveen by S.N. Behrman. 1. He repeated his cardinal dictum: "When you pay high for the priceless, you're getting it cheap." 2. Duveen noticed that Europe had plenty of art and America had plenty of money, and his entire astonishing career was the product of that simple observation. 3. Monopoly was ...
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February 14, 2024

Monty Moncrief Texas Oil Billionaire

My top 10 highlights from the book: 1. Optimism is the personal quality that nurtures luck. 2. No guts, no blue chips, has always been a wildcatter's expression of faith. 3. What they needed was a company that had a single man running it; no committees, no group decisions, no hierarchy of managers, no professional deal-killers or pessi...
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February 6, 2024

Napoleon's Maxims

My top 10 highlights from the book: 1. Hesitation and half measures lose all in war. 2. It is profitable to study the campaigns of the great masters. 3. A rapid march augments the morale of an army, and increases its means of victory. 4. Ten people who yell make more noise than ten thousand who keep silent. 5. Long orders, which requir...
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January 29, 2024

The 38 Letters From J.D. Rockefeller to His Son

My top 10 highlights from the book: 1. Visionary businessmen are always good at finding opportunities in every disaster. 2. The greatest reward for our hard work is not what we get, but what we become. 3. People who climb up in any industry are fully committed to what they are doing and are dedicated. Sincerely love the work you do; yo...
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January 2, 2024

The NEW Poor Charlie's Almanack

My top 10 highlights from the book: 1. Scale and fanaticism combined is very powerful. 2. The most important rule in management is get the incentives right. 3. You want to maximize the playing time of your top players. 4. There is an old two-part rule that often works wonders in business, science, and elsewhere: 1) Take a simple, basic...
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October 30, 2023

Southwest Airlines' Crazy Recipe for Business and Personal Success

My top 10 highlights from the book: 1. No carrier knows its niche as well as Southwest. 2. While other carriers have been lured by the temptation to step outside their niche, Southwest has maintained the discipline to stay focused on its fundamental reason for being. 3. Southwest is obsessed with keeping costs low to maximize profitabi...
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October 7, 2023

Working Backwards: Insights, Stories, and Secrets from Inside Amazon

My top 10 highlights from the book: 1. Jeff had one simple rule: "It has to be perfect." He'd remind his team that one bad customer experience would undo the goodwill of hundreds of perfect ones. 2. Leaders start with the customer and work backwards. 3. Leaders have relentlessly high standards—many people may think these standards are ...
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September 27, 2023

Young Titan: The Making of Winston Churchill

My top 10 highlights from the book: 1. History likes winners. 2. At the heart of his story is an irrepressible spirit. 3. Little men let events take their course. I like things to happen, and if they don't happen I like to make them happen 4. While other politicians were content to get their information from a scattering of newspapers,...
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September 25, 2023

Hero of the Empire: The Making of Winston Churchill

My top 10 highlights from the book: 1. Always more audacity. (A maxim Churchill repeated to himself.) 2. The first time you meet Winston you see all his faults and the rest of your life you spend discovering his virtues. 3. I have faith in my star. I am intended to do something in the world. 4. Beyond the vaguest of outlines, he didn't...
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September 20, 2023

The Forgotten Highlander

My top 10 highlights from the book: 1. Invaders are always organized. 2. Every morning I would tell myself over and over: Survive this day. Survive this day. Survive this day. 3. On countless occasions I've seen two men with the same symptoms and same physical state and one will die and one will make it. I can only put that down to she...
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September 13, 2023

Creativity, Inc.

My top 10 highlights from the book: 1. If you give a good idea to a mediocre team, they will screw it up. If you give a mediocre idea to a brilliant team, they will either fix it or throw it away and come up with something better. 2. Everything associated with our name needs to be good. Quality is the best business plan. 3. Every time ...
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September 4, 2023


My top 10 highlights from the book: 1. A human life, by its very nature, has to be devoted to something or other, to a glorious or humble enterprise, an illustrious or obscure destiny. This is a strange but inexorable condition of things. 2. His starting point was always to create the most extraordinary things. 3. You get the feeling o...
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August 27, 2023


My top 10 highlights from Balenciaga and Dior (Chapter 13 of Creators) 1. Dior dressed the rich, Balenciaga the very rich. 2. Of all the creative people I have come across, Cristóbal Balenciaga was easily the most dedicated to the business of making beautiful things. 3. From the age of three to his mid-twenties he learned every aspect ...
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August 6, 2023

Paul Graham (How to Do Great Work)

My top 10 highlights from the essay: 1. If you asked an oracle the secret to doing great work and the oracle replied with a single word, my bet would be on "curiosity." 2. Being prolific is underrated. 3. Seek out the best colleagues. 4. If you're interested you're not astray. 5. If you don't try to be the best you won't even be good. ...
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August 1, 2023

Christopher Nolan

My top 10 highlights from the book: 1. Nolan does not have an email account or a cell phone. 2. He dreams with his eyes open. 3. Memento was borne into the world on the back of obsession. 4. Nolan made it because he had to. 5. Minds don't wander on a Chris Nolan set. 6. Every film I do I have to believe that I'm making the best film th...
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July 23, 2023

Mark Twain

My top 10 highlights from the book: 1. Doors open at 7 o’clock. The trouble will begin at 8. 2. The ad itself became legendary: “Wanted: Young, skinny, wiry fellows not over eighteen. Must be expert riders, willing to risk death daily. Orphans preferred.” 3. His death would not have lengthened the life of the Confederacy or the Union b...
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July 16, 2023

James Cameron: The Futurist

My top 10 highlights from the book: 1. He's a truck driver who directed the highest-grossing movie of all time and then ditched Hollywood to spend a decade of his life exploring the deep ocean and the heights of science. 2. It was plain to see that Cameron was a man on his own mission. 3. A man who seemed interested only in doing thing...
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July 5, 2023

Walt Disney and Picasso

My top 10 highlights from the book: 1. Disney put excellence before any other consideration. 2. Disney had the American entrepreneurial spirit to an unusual degree. 3. By the age of twenty he had already run his own company, gone bankrupt, and set up again. 4. Disney had a very hard time getting work in the movie industry, trudging fro...
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June 26, 2023

Arnold Schwarzenegger Before He Was Successful

My top 10 highlights from the book: 1. No one could restrain his mutinous energy. 2. What separates the champion from the guy that is the second best or the loser is the person who has the psychological advantage. Everything is the mind. I had a psychological advantage. 3. Not even his peers could understand the enormity of his lifetim...
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June 24, 2023

The Founder of Glock

My top 10 highlights from the book: 1. Quality will always bring you more money. 2. He evolved from a provincial manager of a radiator factory to a world traveling industrialist. 3. Glock started with a blank sheet of paper. As a result, he came up with something original. 4. Glock's gross margins exceeded 65%. The Glock's simple desig...
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June 13, 2023

Dynasties: The World's Great Family Businesses

My top 10 highlights from the book: 1. Good was never good enough. The company's slogan was kaizen: continuous improvement. 2. It is impossible to create an innovative product unless you do it yourself, pay attention to every detail, and then test it exhaustively. Never entrust the creation of a product to others, for that will inevita...
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June 5, 2023

Confessions of an Advertising Man: David Ogilvy

My top 10 highlights from the book: 1. You aren't advertising to a standing army; you are advertising to a moving parade. 2. I admire people who work hard, who bite the bullet. 3. Don't bunt. Aim out of the park. Aim for the company of immortals. 4. Only First Class business, and that in a First Class way. 5. M. Pitard did not tolerate...
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May 29, 2023

Robert Caro on the relationship with your father, power, poverty, ruthlessness, obsession and running

My top 10 highlights from the book: 1. He was a guy you couldn't deny anymore. 2. I asked Tommy the Cork what had changed Lyndon Johnson's status in October, 1940, he said: "Money, kid, money." 3. Turn every page. Never assume anything. Turn every goddamned page. 4. Power doesn't always corrupt. But what power always does is reveal. 5....
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May 22, 2023

Sol Price: The Founder who taught Jim Sinegal, Jeff Bezos, Sam Walton, and Bernie Marcus

My top 10 highlights from the book: 1. You train an animal, you teach a person. 2. If you’re not spending 90% of your time teaching, you’re not doing your job. —Jim Sinegal. 3. If you want to be successful just put yourself in the place of a cranky, demanding customer. See your business through the eyes of the customer. 4. We have said...
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May 15, 2023

Warren Buffett's Favorite Founder: Rose Blumkin

My top 10 highlights from the book: Listen to the Founders episode on this book 1. There are several "Going Out of Business" advertisements from competitors's stores framed and hanging on the wall. 2. What is your favorite thing to do on a nice evening? Drive around to check the competition and plan my next attack. 3. The woman who nev...
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May 11, 2023

The Mind of Napoleon

My top 10 highlights from the book: Listen to the Founders episode on this book. 1. All great events hang by a single thread. The clever man takes advantage of everything, neglects nothing that may give him some added opportunity; the less clever man, by neglecting one thing, sometimes misses everything. 2. He knows that men have alway...
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April 4, 2023

Bernard Arnault and the Moet-Hennessy Louis Vuitton Story

My top 10 highlights from the book: 1. I may lose once but I never lose twice. 2. He had such an appetite for victory and such a capacity for work that he was bound to succeed. 3. Arnault is an iron fist in an iron glove. 4. He did not stray from his path. Relentlessly he pursued his ascent and seized every passing opportunity. 5. It i...
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March 30, 2023

The Tao of Charlie Munger

My top 10 highlights from the book: 1. Munger is a deeply perceptive observer of human nature. 2. In business we often find that the winning system goes almost ridiculously far in maximizing and or minimizing one or a few variables—like the discount warehouses of Costco. 3. The one thing that all of Berkshire's businesses have in commo...
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