#NF《BRAN-NEW HARDCOVER ! + Vivid And Honest Book Which Shows Ugly Side of Silicon Valley》Dan Lyons - DISRUPTED : My Misadventure In The Start-Up Bubble
★★ New York Times bestseller ★★ ★★ Wall Street Journal bestseller ★★ ★★ San Francisco Chronicle bestseller ★★ Disrupted: My Misadventure in the Start-Up Bubble is a book written by American author and journalist Daniel Lyons. The book was first published on April 5, 2016. The book was favorably received with the Los Angeles Times saying that it was "the best book on the Silicon Valley". Ashlee Vance, American journalist and author, said that the book was "widely entertaining" and that it "injected a dose of sanity into a world gone mad". An instant New York Times bestseller, Dan Lyons' "hysterical" (Recode) memoir, hailed by the Los Angeles Times as "the best book about Silicon Valley," takes readers inside the maddening world of fad-chasing venture capitalists, sales bros, social climbers, and sociopaths at today's tech startups. For twenty-five years Dan Lyons was a magazine writer at the top of his profession--until one Friday morning when he received a phone call: Poof. His job no longer existed. "I think they just want to hire younger people," his boss at Newsweek told him. Fifty years old and with a wife and two young kids, Dan was, in a word, screwed. Then an idea hit. Dan had long reported on Silicon Valley and the tech explosion. Why not join it? HubSpot, a Boston start-up, was flush with $100 million in venture capital. They offered Dan a pile of stock options for the vague role of "marketing fellow." What could go wrong? HubSpotters were true believers: They were making the world a better place ... by selling email spam. The office vibe was frat house meets cult compound: The party began at four thirty on Friday and lasted well into the night; "shower pods" became hook-up dens; a push-up club met at noon in the lobby, while nearby, in the "content factory," Nerf gun fights raged. Groups went on "walking meetings," and Dan's absentee boss sent cryptic emails about employees who had "graduated" (read: been fired). In the middle of all this was Dan, exactly twice the age of the average HubSpot employee, and literally old enough to be the father of most of his co-workers, sitting at his desk on his bouncy-ball "chair." This book is an amazing piece of investigative journalism. It took a lot of guts to write. The legal hurdles are enormous, for one, enough to destroy anyone who hasn’t covered his or her bases. And Lyons’s method of truth-telling will make him feared by other companies, enough that it’s doubtful he’ll ever get hired again. It is obvious from the beginning that the twenty-somethings working at start-up HubSpot do not like Lyons on sight, a “privileged” white man in his early 50s. The need to conform on their part is tremendous, because they are loaded with student debt, and don’t have many options for well-paying jobs. It causes them to fall into a cult-like trance of self-help guru nonsense and corporate-speak. This can be irritating to an intelligent person’s ears – which Lyons has. But their need to belong is intense, and anyone who threatens their sense of self and well-being, even at the expense of economic justice, is regarded as an enemy. Lyons’s book is hilarious for simply pointing out the obvious, that we’re dealing here in a billion and a half valued company that sells a crappy product. And that this outfit from Cambridge, Massachusetts, typical for any suburban Boston enclave of college graduates (I am well aware of them), is a sham of diversity. Well they’re not completely white. At least there’s the founder, one of two, from Central Asia. He ends up doing what everyone would love to do, make millions of dollars from a relatively small initial investment (500,000 dollars, to be exact, something few of us have), even if that means exploiting countless nameless faces on his way to super-stardom and PowerPoint presentation glamour. Like most of the leaders in this book, he’s more into profiting from self-image than managing people. Throughout Lyons says he’d stop ridiculing everyone for willfully brainwashed conformity if the product HubSpot sold was actually valuable. It’s not. It’s garbage software to help small businesses run blogs, a sixth-rate one compared to WordPress. College graduates at HubSpot are taking advantage of small business owners who lack the clout to not need the advertising of blogging. Meanwhile they throw parties, eat plenty of candy and are cheery-faced through and through. This is important to bear in mind. Lyons is not anti-corporate but anti-mind control. As journalism memoir, Lyons’s skill at narration is outstanding. He takes you through a year in a start-up, and by the end of it, you understand how a company is made from top to bottom. It is very impressive the way he handles being laughed at by the young millennials, especially the women who need a mutual support system much more than the men do, who are more into self-delusion and following orders to a tee. Needless to say there are few women in the executive, probably because the women in such a climate aren’t very good at following orders. Ordinarily this would speak well for them if they weren't hearing "lean-in" in the other ear. The epilogue is fantastic and came as a great surprise – but a great moral is revealed. It had never been Lyons’s intent to discover one. It shows how a simple book, a memoir, a little odd 250-page thing, can threaten a company worth a billion and a half dollars to its core. That they could feel so threatened by this speaks volumes about the culture Lyons describes. ---------------------------------------------------------------------- Review From Financial Times FT : Satire on workplace of software company HubSpot pierces the quirks of the tech start-up bubble A 52-year-old journalist who has covered the tech industry for decades is laid off. He joins a start-up where the average employee is aged 29 and tends to wear clothing bedecked with the company logo and colour. Coming from the author of a cutting satire of Steve Jobs, who now writes for the HBO comedy Silicon Valley, the tale could be mistaken for a film pitch or parodic dystopian novel. But Dan Lyons is serious. After being “dumped” as Newsweek’s technology editor in 2012, Lyons decides to ride Silicon Valley’s second great bubble. Lyons finds the right company, if only for the raw material that he, a seasoned satirist, spins into gold. When Lyons joins Boston-based HubSpot as a “marketing fellow” in 2013, it is gearing up to go public. Reeling from culture shock, Lyons catalogues daily life in the company and its unselfconsciously ridiculous vocabulary. Its software helps businesses assail customers with messages it says are not spam but “loveable marketing content”. Employees are not sacked, they are “graduated”. A co-founder totes a teddy bear to meetings to represent the customer. There are yoga ball chairs, free candy, taps dispensing beer, and a replica of a red British telephone box. The funny, if repetitive, descriptions paint a workplace that is “a cross between a kindergarten and a frat house”. But the book is not just a chronicle of the tech bubble’s silly quirks. As Lyons gets to know HubSpot, questions arise about the business model of a company that does not appear to trust its product. At one point his desk is moved to a “boiler room” of telemarketers selling HubSpot software, which claims to replace such dated practices. The company says it evaluates its employees on “HEART” — an anodyne acronym for “humble, effective, adaptable, remarkable and transparent” — but holds its sales reps to strict quotas. Lyons uses the lens of his growing disillusionment to focus a broader critique of Silicon Valley. “The people at the top are profiting from this game, which they have rigged in their favour,” he writes, by turning money-losing start-ups into financial vehicles for the benefit of a handful of investors. Tech workers, meanwhile, “are told the needs of the company are more important than their own”. The darkest turn comes, after Lyons has thoroughly fallen out with HubSpot (but profited from its IPO), returned to journalism and written this book. HubSpot’s chief marketing officer is sacked for unethical conduct after trying to obtain Lyons’s manuscript, another executive resigns before he too can be fired and the chief executive is sanctioned for his role in the affair. The Federal Bureau of Investigation probes the incident. But it is HubSpot’s response to the book that suggests it is as clueless as Lyons portrays it. The co-founders write a LinkedIn post that strikes the wounded tone of a jilted ex. “We were upset when we first read the book,” they write. “But negative emotions have a relatively short half-life with us. Our emotions have been dissipating quickly and we think they’ll asymptotically trend towards zero over time. Besides, life is too short to hold grudges.” About the Author Dan Lyons is a novelist, journalist, and screenwriter. He is currently a co-producer and -writer for the HBO series Silicon Valley. Previously, Lyons was technology editor at Newsweek and the creator of the groundbreaking viral blog "The Secret Diary of Steve Jobs" (AKA "Fake Steve Jobs"). Lyons has written for the New York Times Magazine, GQ, Vanity Fair, and Wired. He lives in Winchester, MA.
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