• How I Built This

  • The Unexpected Paths to Success from the World's Most Inspiring Entrepreneurs
  • By: Guy Raz
  • Narrated by: Guy Raz
  • Length: 10 hrs and 31 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook
  • Categories: Business & Careers, Career Success
  • 4.7 out of 5 stars (107 ratings)
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Publisher's Summary

The number one Wall Street Journal Business Book Best seller & Top 10 New York Times Best seller 

Based on the highly acclaimed NPR podcast, How I Built This with Guy Raz, his book offers priceless insights and inspiration from the world’s top entrepreneurs on how to start, launch and build a successful venture.

Great ideas often come from a simple spark: a football player on the New Zealand national team notices all the unused wool his country produces and figures out a way to turn them into shoes (Allbirds). A former Buddhist monk decides the very best way to spread his mindfulness teachings is by launching an app (Headspace). A sandwich cart vendor finds a way to reuse leftover pita bread and turns it into a multi-million dollar business (Stacy’s Pita Chips).

Award-winning podcast creator Guy Raz has interviewed more than 200 highly successful innovators from across the world, from the founders of Five Guys, Airbnb and Bumble to James Dyson and Reed Hastings of Netflix, to uncover amazing true stories like these. 

In How I Built This, he shares tips for every entrepreneur’s journey: from the early days of formulating your idea, to raising money and recruiting employees, to finding your market and, finally, to paying yourself a real salary. This is a must-read for anyone who has ever dreamed of starting their own business or wondered how trail-blazing go-getters made their own dreams a reality. 

©2020 Audible Inc (P)2020 Audible Inc

Critic Reviews

"A must read for anyone who wants to start a business, grow a business, or be inspired by those who do." (Adam Grant, author of Originals)

"These stories of founders and their companies are told with the same energy and openness it takes to be an entrepreneur." (Eric Ries, author of The Lean Startup)

"Guy Raz is supremely himself in this guide for aspiring entrepreneurs: brilliantly perceptive, incessantly curious, infectiously energetic and above all, a master storyteller." (Angela Duckworth, author of Grit)   

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What listeners say about How I Built This

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Reassuring as a long time entrepreneur

Hi
I listen to your podcasts snd listened to many a book since then
Now listened to yours

I’m in South Africa
I have run my own business for almost 30 years and it’s been through mountains and valleys of ups snd downs .. even a liquidation and closure and restart
On the rise again
www.aromatic.co.za
One day would love to tell the story of resilience
Self reliance
Opportunity
Etc etc …
Thank you

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Some inspirational and interesting ideas, terrible narration

This book has some inspirational stories and interesting ideas. Not the greatest business book I’ve listened to, not the worst. If you’ve read the classics “The 7 habits of highly effective people,” “Think and grow rich,” and “How to win friends and influence people,” there isn’t much new here. But, some of the stories (even though some are well-known) definitely gave me some food for thought for my own entrepreneurial journey. In that way, it was worth the investment of time and money.

If you’re looking for some good examples of people starting and growing a business successfully, this is a good listen.

Now, for the negative.

It was slightly too long. The book could benefit from some editing. Cut one hour off the running time, and it would be consise and compact with information. The whole thing felt self-indulgent at times. I also grew a little tired of the Silicon Valley-lefty/hyperprogressive political comments forced into the narrative here and there (even though they were completely unnecessary and didn’t add anything), but I could overlook it easy enough. Slightly annoying (and, more importantly, distracting from otherwise good content), but no big deal.

What I couldn’t ignore, however, was the narration. It made me cringe almost contantly and it overshadowed everything in a negative way for me. The author has one of the most grating voices and most annoying intonations I’ve ever heard. I literally had to take breaks for this reason alone. The way this guy talks is almost like a parody of some sort. I don't know how to describe it other than hyper-wimpy and hyper-ironic, like an over-the-top character from “Revenge of the Nerds” or something. It made the book hard to take seriously at times, especially when serious topics were discussed. I wish I had listened to a sample before buying. I had gotten the paper version instead if I knew what I had to endure for over ten hours. Absolutely terrible.

Maybe it’s just me, but give it a listen before you buy to be sure.

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Muy recomendado

Me gustó mucho, todas las historias traen consigo un importante mensaje para la vida y el emprendimiento

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Best entrepreneurship book I have ever read

Well, written, very well narrated. Full of inspiration and insights. Very recommended for anyone who has an interest in starups and entrepreneurship.

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What a wonderful book!!

An inquisitive and insightful deep dive into entrepreneurship and into human nature (whether deliberately or inadvertently) narrated through the lens of some of the most successful entrepreneurs. Highly recommended listen for someone interested in a dose of inspiration in business and in life.

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Inspirational

Guy tells Inspiring stories that certainly will give you a different perspective on business and life.

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Nothing new for a HIBT listener

I was hoping to find more unedited insights from the podcast series. Nice the indexing of stories regarding the entrepreneurial journey

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The entrepreneur's path for success.

loved every chapter of this book!. It just helps you to understand how many challenges a person has to face to succeed in business and in life.

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Amazing Book

Hi I'm Mohamed Osman From Somalia I 'd like to say Thank You Guy Raz for this Amazing Book keep up the good work

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A refresher to the amazing podcast and more

I had misgivings. As a subscriber to Guy Raz's podcast of the same name, would it be a repeat of the same stories.
They were misplaced. Guy, has structured the book by the journey of the entrepreneur or the hero's journey as he calls it.
The book is full of good advice, fast paced narration and is an overall refresher to the excellent podcast.
Read, learn and enjoy

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  • Mandy
  • 11-29-20

Excellent- I will re-listen time & again

Every so often a book comes along where it offers so much value & content.
This is unlike other text-book/cliché how to start, run & scale a business. These stories have been told to Guy Raz by real people, not motivational speakers.
I’ve been listening to the How I Built This podcast for some time. This book capsulated everything and more.
A real insight to the world of entrepreneurship and if your struggling, listening to others who have been through worse, will give the strength to carry on.
I know this book will be a re-read & my inspiration for years to come

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  • Anonymous User
  • 10-31-20

Incredible, addictive and all round brilliant book

I never write reviews, although I should, but this book was so inspiring. Love the podcast and this book beautifully intertwined many of the best stories into a flowing lesson of all the stages of starting a business. So inspiring and Guy Raz’s narrating was even better. Such a great story teller and willing to dig into the details of each founders story. Worth every penny!

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  • Andy L
  • 10-17-20

Brilliant stories, brilliantly told

Guy Raz is the GOAT! There are so many useful takeaways in this book I couldn't "put it down" (aurally!).

Really interesting business stories, well structured and excellent narration by the author. Recommend!

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  • oliver wheen
  • 01-28-22

Super interesting!

really good audiobook, I've listened to all of how I built this on Spotify and this book is a great addition.

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  • Amazon customer
  • 01-26-22

Such a beautiful book and the best way to start

Such a beautiful book and the best way to start my year. I identity with many of the struggles. The last 2 chapters were the best. I feel whole.

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  • Richard Greene
  • 01-03-21

Insightful and entertaining

Will listen again so much good content from asking the right questions the right way. Excellently narrated. Can't recommend enough.

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  • owen clery
  • 10-07-20

Very enjoyable listen, highly recommended!

I love the podcast that this book has grown from so was already familiar with many of the stories throughout. Guy Raz ties them together very well, and adds others business stories that weren't in the podcast, to bring plenty of new learnings here. The narrative that he tells is as informative as it is enjoyable. You get to learn more about the author too.

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  • 87edition
  • 10-04-20

Excellent

If you are a fan of the show then you will most certainly enjoy this book. He pretty much condensed all the important key points from all his interviews into this book. This book is very good for anyone looking to start a business.

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  • tim roach
  • 09-15-20

Great stories and very well read

I loved the way each story unfolds in this book. I also like the fact the author read the audible copy and he is a great presenter.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 10-09-20

Buy this book!

As a big fan of Guy Raz’s podcast, I wondered if this book would offer more than what I had already absorbed and learnt on his amazing interviews. It sure did! I’ve finished feeling so inspired and equipped with so much more knowledge to keep building my own business. Thank you Guy!

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  • Anonymous User
  • 09-11-21

Worth a listen

Lots of great information in this one and to top it of Guy is very good to listen too.

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  • Maurice Timoti
  • 07-27-21

A must listen for ALL :)

An easy listen! I highly recommend this book for all people at whatever stage of their entrprenurial journey. Guy has outdone himself with this one.

Grateful for this book and all lessons within.

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  • Simon Anderson
  • 12-30-20

great book for the startup world

anyone considering or who has started on the entrepreneur journey, this book is inspirational and will teach you important steps to increase your likelihood of success.

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  • Kenneth Gomez
  • 11-22-20

Amazing

This book is an offshoot if his famous podcast. But his books is laid out in a nice easy to listen format. I loved the topics that were chosen, from starting a company to the problems cofounders have, selling companies.
It's not easy starting companies but the amount of in depth examples are very suitable.