Sequoia’s Mike Moritz on Leading From a Camel

A Saturday’s NY Times article on the reading habits of CEOs features Sequoia venture guy Mike Moritz. He isn’t really a CEO, of course, but he is apparently a serious bibliophile — albeit one who doesn’t read business books.

“I try to vary my reading diet and ensure that I read more fiction than nonfiction,” Mr. Moritz said. “I rarely read business books, except for Andy Grove’s ‘Swimming Across,’ which has nothing to do with business but describes the emotional foundation of a remarkable man. I re-read from time to time T. E. Lawrence’s ‘Seven Pillars of Wisdom,’ an
exquisite lyric of derring-do, the navigation of strange places and the imaginative ruses of a peculiar character. It has to be the best book ever written about leading people from atop a camel.”


  1. One Way Stox says:

    the funniest part of the piece is when Moritz talks about the Environmental Elite’s appetite for books on ‘climate change’.

  2. This is hilarious:
    “”I used to tell my senior staff to get me poets as managers,” says Sidney Harman … He never could find a poet who was willing to be a manager.”
    This cries out for someone to ask some follow-up questions. Did the staff just ingnore him? How did they choose which poets to ask? It sounds romantic, but I have a hard time believing that nobody was tired of being a starving poet.
    Gauche question: aren’t some of these guys likely lying through their teeth? Given that they’re CEO’s or similar type bigwigs, when do they find time to read so much?