Zero to one - Peter Thiel

Información Breve.

AutorPeter Thiel y Blake Masters


Chapter 1: The challenge of the future

  • Monopolios y competencia: Thiel sostiene que los monopolios son buenos para la innovación y que la competencia puede ser perjudicial, ya que las empresas pueden quedar atrapadas en una lucha constante por el mercado, sin enfocarse en ideas nuevas y transformadoras.
  • La ley de las startups: Thiel propone que una startup debe centrarse en un mercado pequeño y nicho antes de expandirse a mercados más grandes. Esto permite a la startup establecerse como líder en su campo y minimizar la competencia.
  • La importancia de la tecnología: Thiel enfatiza que las empresas tecnológicas tienen un potencial único para generar cambios significativos y crear valor a largo plazo.
  • El poder de las personas: Thiel sostiene que la calidad de las personas que conforman una startup es esencial para su éxito. Es fundamental seleccionar a los empleados adecuados y mantener una cultura empresarial sólida.
  • Planificación y visión del futuro: Thiel aconseja a los emprendedores que piensen a largo plazo y tengan en cuenta cómo sus acciones de hoy afectarán el futuro.

Chapter 2: Party like its 1999

  • lessons from the past. Excessive optimism
  • Cash flow and profitability

Chapter 3: All happy companies are different

  • Each company is unique

Chapter 4: Ideology of competition

  • Better to be a monopoly rather than compete

Chapter 5: Last Mover Advantage

  • Company can generate a monopoly by analyzing a specific market

Chapter 6: You are not a lottery ticket

  • Doesn’t exist

Chapter 7: follow the money

  • Power of law exists
  • The most single thing is the most powerful
  • One distribution strategy domintes others
  • Pareto principle

Chapter 8: secrets

  • easy -> hard -> impossible
  • if ther are many secrets left in the world, there are pro many big companies yet to be started
  • Kaczynski argued all world’s problems are solved, what is lef is easy or impossible. So Destroy existing institutions, tech, and let people start over
  • Four social trends have conispired to root out belief in secrets: incrementalism, risk aversion, compacency, flatness
  • Forty years ago not all knowledge was widely known, people thought they could join a group vanguard that would show them the Way
  • To say that there are no secrets left today would mean that we live in a society with no hidden injustices
  • HP having behind the search for tech secrets, got obsessed over gossip and valued 23$ billion on 2012 (135$ billion on mid 2000)
  • The actual trut is that there are many more secrets left to find, they will ield only to relentless searchers
  • The same reason internet compaines are underestimadted, bcoz their very simplicity, is itself an argument for secrets
  • What secrets is nature not telling you? what secrets are people not telling you?
  • Competition and capatialism are opposites
  • The best place to look or secrets is where no one else is looking
  • Every great business is built around a secret that’s hidden from outside

Chapter 9: foundations

  • Bad desicions made early on are hard to fix later, a great company cannot be built on flawed foundations
  • Everyone in the company have to engage and self-identify with the project, not just the founders
  • It is ver hard to go from 0 to 1 without a team
  • Role concepts:
    • Ownership: who owns the company
    • Possession: who runts the company in a daily basis
    • Control: who governs the company’s affairs
  • Rewarding of work should be power of possession rather than a value of ownership
  • Most conflicts are Ownership vs Control (founders vs investros). Board members want a company public, founders prefer to stay private
  • A board of 3 people is ideal, it should never exceed five people
  • As general rule, everyone in the company should be a full-time worker. Consultants and part-time employees doesn’t work. You’re either on the bus or off the bus
  • Low CEO’s salary sets the standard for everyone else
  • Startups don’t pay high salaries instead part ownership or Equity for a future value
    • Anoyone preference of ownership is a sign of long-term and commitment with the company
  • Setting rules just right the company if founded is key to creation of value in the future
    • As long the company keeys creating new things it lives otherwise it just stops

Chapter 10: The mechanics of mafia

  • A startup is people on a mission and good culture
  • Time is most valuable asset, don’t spend it with people that don’t envision long-term future together
  • In order to hire people, they have to enjoy working together and be talented
  • You will attract your employees if your mission is compelling
  • The startup uniform, everyone shuold be different in the same way
  • Everyone in the company is responsible for doing just one thing
  • Most conflicts in a company occurs when colleages compete for the same role
    • Eliminate competition, build kinds of lon-term relationship
  • Better to be called a cult or even a mafia

Chapter 11: If you build it, will they come?

  • 3 giant ships:
    • ship1: thinkers, leaders and archievers
    • ship2: salespeople and consultants
    • ship3: workers and artisans
  • Customers won’t come just bcoz you built it
  • Advertising matters because it works. Sales is important
    • It takes hard work to make sales look easy
    • All salesman are actors, they persuate, they are not 100% sincere
    • Like acting, sales works best when hidden
  • If you’ve invented something new but you don’t know how to sell it. Bad business
  • Superior sales and distribution create a good monopoly
  • The higher the price the difficult to sale
  • Compex sells are when you don’t have a “salesmen”
  • Once you have a pool of reference custtomers who uses your product then you can go next toward bigger deals
  • Sometimes the product itself is a kind of distribution
  • Distribution is the hidden bottleneck
  • Marketing and ads are for low-priced products and lack on methods of viral distributions
  • TV is a great big megaphone
  • No early-stage startup can pay what big companies pay for Advertising
  • If a product is viral users invite their friends
  • Banners ads is more expensive than paying users to signup
  • Get the most valuable users first, most obvious market segment
  • Distribution follows a power law of its own
  • Poor sales is the cause of failures
  • Selling your company to the media is selling it to everyone else.
  • What google stores about your company is critical
  • Everyone has a product to sell. If you don’t see any sales people, you’re the salesperson

Chapter 12: Man and machine

  • Will there be anything left to do? Sotware is eating the world
  • The best way to create productivity is to get rid of people
  • Computers are complements for humans, it empower people
    • man-machine symbiosis
  • USA workers worried about competition (cheaper mexican substitutes). People compete for jobs and resources, computers neither
  • Globalization means substitution
  • Workers willing to do repetitive tasks for small wage is large
  • Better tech in law, medicine, education won’t replace professionals, it will allow them to do more
  • If linkedin had tried replace recruiters with tech they would failed today
  • Question: how can computers help humans solve hard problems?

Chapter 13: Seeing green

  • eng question: can you create breakthrough tech instead of incremental improvements?
  • timing question: is wnot the right time to start your particular business?
  • monopoly question: are you starting with a big share of small market?
  • people question: do you have the right team?
  • distribution question: do you have a way to not just create but delivery your product?
  • Only when product is 10x better you offer transparent supriority
  • Customers won’t care about tech details unless it solves a particular problem in a superior way
  • The best sales is hidden
  • CEO who looks like a salesman, is probably bad at sales and worse at tech
  • Selling and deliverying is important as the product itself
  • What will the world look like in 10-20 years and how will my business fit in?
  • What will sto pChine from wiping out my business?
  • Great companies have secrets, specific reasons for success that other people dont’ see
  • Doing something different is what’s truly good for society. Allows business to profit by monopolizing a new market
  • Globalization will cause increasingly severe energy challenges unles we build new tech
  • An enrepreneu can’t benefit from macroscale insight without starting at microscale
  • A valuable business must start by finding a niche and dominate small market

Chapter 14: The founders paradox

  • Important for a company to be led by a distinctive individual instead of an interchangeable manager
  • Some people are strong, some weak, some geniuses, some dullards, but most people are in the middle
  • Famouse people are founders too. Personal brand.
  • Apple’s value depends on the vision of a particular person (… used to depend)
  • The single greatest danger for a founder is to become so certain of his own myth that he loses his mind

Stagnation or Singularity

  • Without new tech to relieve competitive pressures, stagnation erupts into conflict. In a global conflict, stagnation collapses into extinction. We create technology to make a a better future
  • Future won’t happen on its own.
  • We cannot assume future will be better, we need to work for it today
  • We have todo new things in our own working lives
  • Everything important to us is singular (universe, planet, country, your company, your life)
  • Find singular ways to create the new things that will make the future better


Los puntos importantes del libro:

  • Monopolio es bueno: para controlar y dominar mercado
  • De 0 a 1: es mejor crear que copiar
  • Dinámica de la ley de potencia: pequeñas apuestas generan mas ganancias
  • Suerte: no existe, es simplemente esfuerzo (planeamiento y estrategias)
  • Iniciar de a poco y escalar: enfocarse en mercados pequeños, dominar y escalar
  • Secretos: oportunidades ocultas
  • Ventaja del último jugador: llegar al mercado al final con un producto perfeccionado
  • Ventas: el producto puede ser genial pero sin forma de llegar al mercado, no sirve
  • Equipo unido: fuerte y alineado equipo con los objetivos claros
  • El futuro: pensar a largo plazo y orientar las estrategias


  • How company stocks work