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on 4 April 2017
I'm giving it 5 stars as it's packed with valuable information that I'm positive will prevent me from making a great deal of mistakes in my new small business, BUT... the author includes a side story to illustrate the mindset of the small business owner that made me cringe and wish he had picked a more relatable character than Sarah. Such a horrible, dull, uninteresting client that doesn't add anything to this book - I now think if I had skipped all the bits about her I wouldn't have missed anything at all.
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on 6 November 2017
I got to quite a few events and this book always comes up on the recommended reading list. It essentially lists the things you need to be reasonably competent at when running your own business, and explains how few of us are competent in all the areas. Many people who have the bright idea of starting their own business are unaware of the technical aspects and pitfalls. The concept is good and it certainly highlights that you need more than the skill of baking a cake for instance, but hey the learning could have been got across in 3 pages.
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on 7 March 2017
Fantastic book. I can see why every raves about it now. It rambles on here or there while going back and fourth to a previous client of Mikes but is kind of essential in order for you to get an in depth but simple read. Like many have said in other reviews, this book has truly taught me a lot while running my Martial arts Academy. Worth every penny.
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on 3 September 2015
One of the best books I've read on starting and managing a business. It does not address startups only; you are likely to find it useful even if you've been in business for years.
The author uses a wonderful blend of storytelling and management techniques to captivate you and get his ideas across. It's easy to read and understand and at the end of it you won't be left with the idea "this does not apply to me".
I found it to be a real eye opener and I even applied some of the ideas presented here and, to my surprise, saw immediate results.
The book does not tell you how to run your business; it does much better it tell you how NOT to do it.
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on 9 August 2012
This book has a few core ideas: (a) most businesses are started by 'technicians' who know, technically how to provide the service or make the product, but are neither good managers or good entrepreneurs (b) to make a lot of money you have to think like a franchisor, e.g. McDonalds. You have to specify in minute detail exactly how everything is done, because otherwise the burden of supervision will become too great for you.

The parable that runs through the book is the story of some expert pie maker who just doesn't understand how to get others actually to make the pies for her so that she can free herself up to open pie shops in all the neighbouring towns.

Although having shelf full of manuals helps, as McDonalds and many other franchise operations show, for many businesses this approach is doomed to failure. My own technical skill was in writing software. There is simply no way that this sort of business can benefit from the approach taken in this book. It probably explains why there are no franchise businesses in this sector.

The problem comes, as far as I'm concerned, in the sheer effort of writing the manuals that allow your business to run like clockwork when you are lying on a beach in the Caribbean. I imagine that McDonalds have put thousands of man years into their set. Who fancies opening a rival chain from scratch now? I think you'd find it difficult to persuade Warren Buffett to provide you with financial backing.

What this is good for is telling you how to sell training in how to run niche businesses. I think that it's a lot easier to make money by being a consultant than by actually running some productive business. Just a thought...
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on 8 October 2014
We've all heard the phrase, "It's all about the fundamentals".

E-Myth is a book that prescribes a single business model to it's readers that, let's face it, doesn't work for most small businesses. However, it does teach lessons to the business owners that do want to grow to be more than a mom-and-pop shop.

I work in big-business IT as a Solution Architect which means that I do a lot of technology and business consulting and, despite the fact that I read this book over a decade ago, I still refer managers and business developers to this book saying, "Read it. Learn it. Love it."

Because this book, while prescribing a single business model, contains the fundamentals concepts for developing a good operational architecture - fundamentals that so many managers simply don't know or think they don't have time to implement because "they are spending too much time in the business and not enough time on the business".

Read it. Learn it. Love it.
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on 22 June 2017
Great book, clearly explains how to succeed ion business. I changed my business plan completely. The first iteration would have meant I would fail as described in the book. I will succeed now. Shared with others considering starting their own business and applying the methods at work.
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on 7 August 2014
This book is an excellent guide for the small business owner such as myself.

If you only get one point it is this--- Work ON your business and not IN your business. IE Pay other people to do the labour and focus yourself on the things that will bring you customers such as sales, marketing and customer care. Put systems in place for your staff to follow that will ensure and maintain quality and get feedback at every stage from your customers so you know what is working and where to improve.

I have read dozens upon dozens of books in my spare time to learn from the people that have gone before me in business. Many have the occasional nugget or are the same as other books but in a different tone, I tend to throw these away or donate them.

This book is still on my shelf as it one of the best books on business I have read.
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on 30 September 2013
There are many ideas and opinions on the methods for ensuring a successful business and these ideas often succeed or fail in roughly equal numbers. At their heart, however, they all have one germ of agreement. As comedian Harry Hill used to say "You've got to have a system."

Gerber's method is basically saying the same thing. You need to plan out how your business is going to work, document it and make sure everyone in your organisation follows the plan. This is a fine idea and one that small and fledgeling companies need to be reminded of. The problem is that the book surrounding the idea sounds like an evangelical speech made at a conference, complete with overly schmaltzy anecdotes and a large dollop of opinion.

The primary opinion raised frequently in the book is one that I wholeheartedly disagree with and judging by internet opinion I'm not alone, with reports and articles calling Gerber out for the same point. He states that you need to organise your business around employing unskilled staff willing to follow a system to the letter. This ONLY works if you come to the conclusion that 'The E-myth Revisited' is an instruction manual in how to design and sell a turnkey franchise business. Gabe Newell, boss of the successful software company Valve, professed the opposite, stating that you should only hire people who are better than you at the task you're hiring them for. A sensible point of view for those wishing to improve the performance and quality of their company, services and goods, but not a good point for those wishing to sell a business plan to franchisees.

With that point in mind, the rest of the book takes on more of the tone of a snake oil salesman, making it difficult to accept some of the points because the cynicism shield has been well and truly erected. The clumsy anecdotal story scattered throughout the book feels like the shill offering to buy the professor's marvellous tonic. This is unfortunate, since the latter sections of the book is where the really helpful information is.

Basically, Gerber has tried to take the 'How to Sell a Franchise' training courses and seminars his company creates and tried to distil them into a single volume. However, he then wraps it all up in inappropriate advice for the general business owners the book purports to be for. A shame.
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on 27 January 2014
If you are planning to start your own business, please read this book before you start. It is a clear outline of what you will encounter and will help and guide you to start with the right mindset.

If you are a business owner already and you wonder why it is not going as you had hoped for in your dreams, also read this. It might be a bit of a shock, but better late than too late.

If you are a business owner and growing your business nicely, but you got stuck at some point, and you want some ideas on how to go forward, please read The Levels, by Ray Moore. This will give you a very good insight about growing your business to the next level.

Both books come highly recommended!
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