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The E-myth: Why Most Businesses Don't Work and What to Do About it Paperback – May 1991

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Product details

  • Paperback: 176 pages
  • Publisher: HarperBusiness; 2nd Revised edition edition (May 1991)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0887304729
  • ISBN-13: 978-0887304729
  • Product Dimensions: 15.5 x 1.6 x 23.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 128,257 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description


Showing how to turn around a business that doesn't work into one that works in a predictable and productive way, this book describes strategies that business owners have discovered and applied to become successful. It is designed as a guide for business owners and aspiring business owners.

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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Nick Coope on 11 July 2011
Verified Purchase
Michael Gerber explains the myths surrounding what it takes to be an entrepreneur.

The myth being that lots of people fired up to start their own business, believe that they will become successful purely through their own passion or skill.

The passion could come from spare time hobbies such as jewellery making or craft type activities.

The skill could be as a result of experience such as joiners, engineers, design consultants and hair dressers. In fact many self employed people are simply practicing their acquired knowledge.

Now, you might be the best hairdresser in the world but it doesn't mean you're any good at business.

Michael Gerber blows this thinking apart by explaining that really, you need to be multiple of four things when operating your own business.

A good manager of people
Good with numbers
Good with Strategy
And good at the job you do - the skill or the passion

He says "If your business is to change, as it must continually do so in order for it to thrive, YOU must change first"

He talks at great length in the book about the fact that you're really balancing these four personalities throughout your business.

You're the guy doing the actual job. You're the numbers guy keeping a track of the profit and cash coming in. You're the strategist - looking forward and deciding where the business is heading. And you're the manager keeping everything together.

Now the difficulty is, is that these four personalities or characters are conflicting in nature.

The strategist is always looking forward, always coming up with new ideas and always pushing the boundaries.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Arabella on 9 Jan. 2010
This book makes you think twice about business and what you want to create when opening and running your own business. A superb book.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 40 reviews
42 of 42 people found the following review helpful
Read this before spending a dime to start any business 30 April 2008
By G. FitzGerald - Published on
Format: Paperback
Everyone that starts a business is a technician that suffers from an Entrepreneurship seizure, hence the E Myth. Small businesses do not work the way intended because the technician only works in the business and can not also have the foresight to work on the business at the same time. This book will open an individuals eyes to what is the reality of owning/operating a business. I wish I had the knowledge of this book when my real estate brokerage exploded with growth in 2005 and I hired my first person. Its not enough to know your business; you need to get others to run it while you focus on growing the operation.

The book will demonstrate and shall the reader how to install systems in the business so anyone can run it, then you will have a business, until then the owner/technician will only have a job. The systems, not the people will run the business and the business will do what it was designed to do. If anyone can run the business because of the systems then anyone can own it and it still will produce income for the owner and his employees. McDonalds is a great example of systems put in place will determine the desired outcome(not the people).

The book will change the way you think of your small business and how to organize the business so you can attain a level of success and freedom. There are only two reasons to own a business to have freedom and to sell it one day.
19 of 22 people found the following review helpful
Essential for any and every small business owner 18 Mar. 2009
By SusieQ Porter - Published on
Format: Paperback
I read Gerber's "E-Myth" many years ago. It's probably the book that most influenced my thinking. It's a fast and easy read. The first time I read it I said to myself "this is a great book but I don't think it will work for my business". As soon as I said that, I thought "what a dumb way to read a book!", so I immediately read it again, this time thinking about all of the ways I could apply and adapt his principles to my business. It helped me elevate my business. I created a mission statement, everyone that came to work for me had to sign on it. After reading this book I created a system that allowed me to standardize nearly all of the processes I used to produce an outstanding product. That process allowed me to move ahead of the pack in my chosen field and that never hurts. The standardization process allowed me and those that came to work for me to uncover 99.9% of the problems that might arise in a given situation and uncovering the flaws in a transaction means that you have the opportunity to deal with them or eliminate them. This time I bought it as a gift for someone wanting to improve their business.
17 of 20 people found the following review helpful
Simple concepts for easy digestion! 20 July 2005
By Mitchell L. Martin - Published on
Format: Hardcover
This book is a must read. The concepts presented are given plainly and initially disect common reasons for management failure. Mr. Gerber then reconstructs in easy terms how to fix the issues. The concepts provided are simple, such as service for example, which in my opinion direct the reader to focus on simple business features that are commonly forgotten about and which at the same time are what are primarily responsible for any businesses sucess.

This is by no means a pandoras box of new ideas. These are fundamental business ideas communicated in a way that are unforgettable and change the way you may have thought about critical business improvment issues. This style of communication give credit to the authors exceptional method of storytelling.

The Entreprenural Myth discovers and alludes plainly what each us may have thought about running a business and the trappings that may occur. This book also exposes our pre-disposition toward actions which may lead to failure and how the formation of our ideas about business are based upon our ego and mis-information.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
best book for starting own business 8 Aug. 2007
By Amazon Customer - Published on
Format: Paperback
that doesn't make it as easy to follow as it is to read; but you owe it to yourself to try.

Worth its weight in gold. Sound advice. Requires mental discipline.
19 of 26 people found the following review helpful
Grade School Lessons & E-Myth Acadamy Advertisement 4 Oct. 2007
By Mairlyn Snavely - Published on
Format: Hardcover
This is, at best the beginning part of a working business solution. Yes, Gerber makes a valid point about the E-myth concept (read other reviews if you don't know the concept) but it's really for beginners (newbs). All his books are really just advertisements,for his E-Myth Academy consulting business in the back of all his books. There is nearly no practical information. He makes his point about the E-Myth, then masterbates it endlesly, re-making that point six ways to Sunday, add nausium and leaves you wondering, well, but what should I do? Well, little lost lamb (newb), go to E-Myth web site or call the 800 number where they have a fast talking sales crew and sign up for 2 years of 700 plus a month (I haven't checked lately) consultation/classes.

After you get the point that to make your technical skill pay/function as a business you need to have business skills/know how. You can sign up for the 700 plus per month for 2 years advertised in the back of his books. Start looking elsewhere for actual practical information. Because there are no E-myth books or tapes that have that information. You can do a lot for your business with that kind of money. I'm always shocked at how newbs starting businesses throw money around. Something to buy and a place to buy it, no matter how pretty it all is, doesn't make a successful business, In my observations, it's the major reason new businesses fail. I'm sure some of you with deep pockets or You corperate types who have never had to find the guts or earn the money to build a small business without Sugar Daddy Warbucks help will think I'm wrong. This E-Myth stuff is valid but it it's grade school lessons made to look like some kind of super-profound truth/solution. Well, it is, grade school true, now what Mr. Gerber, where's the solutions, spend, what, nearly 17,000 Sign up for what I thought I was getting when I bought the Books and tapes? What a greedy little tight wad! When are you going to write a book with substance? Hey Newbs! Trust me, yes you need real business skills, there are plenty of great business books out there, take some of that 17,000 and buy some and be careful with the rest you're going to need it.
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