Liftoff – the Story of a Start-Up!

Starship has a failure
When Rockets go wrong.

Photo: NYT

This is a review of the book “Liftoff” by Erik Berger. If you have ever led a Start-Up, or if you are planning to lead one see our blog: (So you want to be a Unicorn? ). “Liftoff”, covers the SpaceX history from the initial concept to the first successful launch and is a great read for an entrepreneur considering a Start-Up.

The Author uses a similar approach as Michael Lewis , in that he ties together anecdotes from various key players around a time line. His details and descriptions are fantastic and he also includes a few pictures to provide the reader with some images of the key characters and locations.

Having to make pay-roll is the gun on every Founder’s head!

While Elon Musk is a peripheral figure in this book, it is clear that he is the glue that holds SpaceX together. When it comes to money and paying bills, the buck stops with him. Every Founder can relate to that.

Hire the best and fire fast!

This is another lesson from the book that every entrepreneur needs to take to heart. Elon Musk has an incredible talent for selecting people who are extremely smart and who buy into his vision. However, after reading “Liftoff”, it is clear that burn-out or a disagreement with the founder is common. At the end of the book the author makes a point to update the reader where the main characters are in 2020. I liked that.


“Liftoff”  is a great book to read, whether or not you are a fan of Elon Musk. You get drawn into a story that reads like a thriller, even though you already know the end.

Have fun reading:

picture of book cover for Liftoff - about start-ups and SpaceX
The Book – a must read for Start-Up Founders


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