by Matt Higgins
Editor’s note: Executive fellow at Harvard Business School, Guest Shark on Shark Tank, and famed angel investor Matt Higgins reveals the counterintuitive formula for a life of perpetual growth that has been practiced for thousands of years by military leaders and serial entrepreneurs alike—forget the Plan B and burn the boats.
From Sun Tzu to Julius Caesar, the ancient Israelites to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, there’s a bold and highly effective tactic seen throughout history—when leaders want to motivate their troops for success, they destroy all opportunities for retreat, and go all-in on the mission. They burn their boats; it’s win or perish, and the clarity of sheer desperation propels them to victory.
Serial entrepreneur, brilliant investor, and television personality Matt Higgins makes the case that burning the boats isn’t just advantageous in times of war or crisis, but a strategy we can all use to achieve our greatest dreams. Conquerors don’t have a Plan B, knowing intuitively what science bears out: the mere contemplation of a Plan B weakens our resolve and diminishes our chances for breakout success.
In Burn the Boats, Higgins draws from experiences in his own rags-to-riches life to show you how it’s done. The lessons he’s learned along the way, and witnessed in the leaders around him, are now for the first time distilled down to a template for success that’s available to everyone bold enough to use it. Each chapter includes clear, actionable advice that readers can immediately start applying to their own lives, along with inspiration drawn from dozens of real-life success stories, adding up to a blueprint for a future filled with victories.