The Ride of a Lifetime by Robert Iger

Summary

  1. Bob Iger, CEO of Disney, takes us through his career path and lessons learned from working in the media industry for the past 45 years.

Key Takeaways

  1. 10 essential leadership traits
    1. Optimism
    2. Courage
    3. Focus
    4. Decisiveness
    5. Curiosity
    6. Fairness
    7. Thoughtfulness
    8. Authenticity
    9. Relentless pursuit of perfection
    10. Integrity
  2. Started off at the lowest rung of the ABC ladder and learned everything there. The lingo. The demands. The ins and outs of every show. It taught him grit and perseverance 
    1. Must have this “bottom-up” view of the company
  3. Rune Goldberg was an early boss and taught Bob to innovate or die. Do not accept anything less than the best and find a way, no matter what, to achieve your vision. Being innovative has a trickle down benefit of attracting like-minded people who can help you excel
  4. Know what you don’t know and ask the questions and do the work to learn as quickly as possible
  5. Hire good people, trust them, and let them run. Take risks, take the blame, give away the credit, and do the job in front of you
  6. One of the hardest and most important lessons in business and in life is to not let your ego get in the way of an idea or solution. Similarly, show people empathy and respect. This can make seemingly impossible situations solvable. 

What I got out of it

  1. Take a simple idea and take it seriously. Bob seems to honor this principle, seems true to his word, empathetic, a great negotiator and deal maker, and thoughtful about his company and role. Fun to walk through some of the (post-hoc) thinking on his career, deals, acquisitions, decisions, and more