on August 21, 2013
This book, while admittedly having decent information in it, especially about how to get investors to the table for your business pitch, is written mainly for quirky hipster women. No investor in the world is going to lend tens of thousands of dollars to a guy pitching a business idea if he passes out pet rocks or asks investors to write a haiku, as he will likely come off looking mentally unstable or immature.
Both of these "ideas" are actually in the book.
In another passage, the author tells about her creepily staring at a potential investor from across the bar until he made eye contact. If a guy does that he'll likely be asked to leave the establishment.
It should also be noted that this book is similar to others of its kind, in that it is written by an Ivy League graduate in NYC who likely has more access to wealthy connections that the average person. Much of what I have read in this book simply did not apply to my situation. I have to imagine this sentiment will resound with many who read this book and don't have the access to capital that she does.
I would have appreciated some sort of disclaimer, in the description, that the book primarily focuses on non-traditional methods of developing your business and as is totally dependent on your current location. Having known that beforehand, I likely would have looked elsewhere for information.
on September 6, 2013
In defence of this book I'd say that she does she seem full of energy and enthusiasm, which plenty of readers will find helpful to get them fired up and motivated to take some action on their own big ideas. That's a big plus.
On the other hand, the information contained in the book is limited and specious. It's great to be presented with new ideas for raising capital and meeting contacts, but as an Ivy League graduate, and a former wall-street analyst I think it's fair to say that Miki's contact book and access to resources is a little different than 'most people'.
I mean, suggesting that you invite all the business people you know to a dinner to pitch them your idea is great; but plenty of budding entrepreneurs don't already have a pool of friends and contacts that have cash to spare. In fact, I think a lot of 'normal' folks would laugh at the very idea that they know even a handful of people who'd be willing to fork over thousands for a random business venture. So, the advice is sweet and genuine, but maybe not actionable for those who don't already move in Ivy League circles, with friend's of friend's who own Tao (!).
I should also mention that I'm British, not American. I don't know how this reads on the other side of the pond (and admittedly in Britain we are a little bit over-reserved) but some parts of this book were really cringey; either quite self-aggrandising, or just out-and-out 'NO'.
She gives an anecdote where she busts in on a successful businessman having dinner in his restaurant, Tao, in New York City.
Firstly, that alone would be considered atrocious bad manners in Europe, and would certainly not lead to a positive business connection. But then she goes on to say that she congratulate's him on his success and says she's "proud" of him (with a side-note that saying you're 'proud' of people is a good way to create a familial rapport).
Oh my goodness. Again, I don't know how this reads to Americans, but this is NOT acceptable behaviour in Europe. To say to a stranger who is older than you, that you are proud of him - that is just an Epic Fail, and the height of bad manners. How startlingly arrogant and condescending!
...I really can't believe the editor didn't grab that and whip it out before it got to print. It just comes across as self-entitled, juvenile and arrogant.
Everyone's life experience & cultural environment is different, but to any young people reading this book with great excitement I'd say: follow the practical advice, use the enthusiasm to motivate you, but leave out the networking methodolgy...you don't need to behave in this way to do well in business.
on April 15, 2014
I was expecting a book of quitting my day job, starting my own business and living happily ever after... instead I was treated to a story of how a girl from a well off family went from Cornell, to summer internships at film studios, to a semester in London... which apparently all entrepreneurs do? Then it goes on to tell us how she was nervous of hosting a dinner brainstorm session... at an MTV Studios boardroom.... which she only did after shadowing a top level restaurateur of NYC. This book isn't motivational or feel good by any means. It makes you feel that unless you went to a well off college and have high end connections through school or family... you won't make it. Hoping to be able to return this as it won't be staying anywhere near my library.
on March 27, 2014
The exercise on removing friends who deplete you is straight out of Fiona Harrold's Be Your Own Life Coach. The exercises to help you find your passion are straight out of Martha Back, Finding Your Own North Star. If you want some life coaching or help working out the sort of life you want, I suggest either of these authors have a far superior offering. She dilutes and strips back the concepts so they're like bubble gum - completely lacking substance. Obviously not a deep thinker this one.
If she was a deep thinker, she might have thought twice about getting her twin sister (who is mentioned throughout the book) to write the first review of this book on Amazon, giving it 5 stars of course, without disclosing the conflict of interest.
She advises taking a cheese platter to a company when you're trying to win people over. She obviously thinks she is a lot cleverer than she actually is, and that most people are a lot more stupid than they actually are. This arrogance and a kind of breezing through life thinking no-one will notice her lapses in integrity (or probably more that they don't matter because it's her, and she's special), is common in people who have privileged backgrounds, as this author does.
The complete lack of appreciation of the fact that her wealthy background and parental support (they paid for her Ivy League college education) put her in a seriously advantageous position compared to most people is quite shocking. Totally lacking self awareness. Most people can't afford to be interns as they need to work to pay the rent and put food on the table. Most people pay for themselves to go to University so can't afford to have semesters doing optional internships overseas. Fair enough, not every one with her privilege does as well as she has, but she is seriously lacking EQ.
Do not buy this book. The last thing you want to do is give this woman more credibility. Choose a book written by someone with depth and integrity instead.
on September 10, 2013
The networking and fundraising methodolgy is very screwed up. It will not work for 99% of the population. The fundraising dinner party idea is so ridiculous.
THINX, Miki's new startup, and doesn't make sense either. She received innovation awards from The Tribeca Film Festival for innovation and the Grommet, but she has yet to actually deliver a single panty to a customer even 8 months after getting funding and launching. So nobody can vouch for THINX's quality or performance. Neither Miki or her Co-founders did any THINXing about the charity component of THINX. At first, their goal was to give away reusable pads to girls in third-world countries for their period since they couldn't afford pads. The truth is that most probably can't afford and don't have panties to put the reusable pads in. The reusable pads can cause Toxic Shock Syndrome from improper cleansing. Finally, many girls may not even have access to clean water to clean the pads with. THINX is all about hype. The concept of the period panty isn't anything new so the founders were not truly innovative, and the cause wasn't well thought out. Miki's success with fundraising really came only AFTER she met Tony Hsieh at Summit Series, which costs $5K for a single weekend. THINX won't be a huge hit because the founders don't understand what they are doing.
All in all, Miki is a very energetic woman. Her charisma, luck and ability to manufacture hype should be applauded, but her business skills are not impressive. She has been lucky to meet and partner with Tony Hsieh for Wild and THINX as well as getting the founder of Century 21 to invest in Super Sprowtz after meeting him in an elevator.
on September 28, 2013
It looks like we have a new Robert Kiyosaki! She's young, she's sexy, she's gorgeous, she's got a book full of cool ways to make money, and none of them make any sense whatsoever.
If the author accomplished any of the things she claims, then it's either luck or some strange power unique to her, so either way there's nothing here that we can use. Starting a restaurant is not a "cool" job for someone looking to have fun; it's hard work, management intensive, and unless you know what you're doing, you're a sitting duck. The employees will skim your barrel dry!
She says her parents invented an electronics kit for kids, but I never heard of it anywhere. Those kits existed since the 1950's, and if her parents really did make them, they probably sold them to friends. Then she says her parents started a summer camp for gifted kids, but she doesn't say much about it. Anyway, big deal, go into any low-income neighborhood, and you'll find loads of women running a day care service out of their home.
Something about this story just isn't right.
on December 24, 2013
The air about this book is so trivial. The writing style of a tween. So peppy and bubbly but lacking in substance. The books last few chapters are about diet and exercise. Like I bought the start my business book to get diet advice? There are much better books by entrepreneurs out there skip this one.
on August 14, 2013
Pretty much just her own story about how she made things happen in her own life. It might be inspiring to some, but I can't help feeling kind of suckered that I gave her money by buying the book, and now I've supported her doing her own cool s***. Moral of the story: find some topic to write a short book on, get Yahoo to mention it in an article, so people will buy it, and whammo!... - you're a writer. Flimsy stuff here. Nothing new.
on December 17, 2015
This book had good intentions, but the author was far too self-boasting and used tips like, "use your friends who work at MTV to let you use their space" and "make friends with the owner of TAO" as tips. While I do think that these things are more achievable than to those who just have connections, Miki would have been far better off explaining how to get those connections and work with people than just assuming everyone has them. She continually points out her clear advantages in her career path and fails to even note that she has them.. basically just assuming everyone else does too. Her ideas were interesting, but her execution and personal story damper the book itself. The absolute worst part is the end where she tries to give advice about every other aspect of her life "only drink vodka sodas and you won't gain weight" or "here's the story of how my boyfriend and I met at Burning Man, it'll happen to you, too!" I couldn't even read those chapters.
All and all, interesting but not terribly original ideas you could probably find in other books that aren't written as simple self-marketing and bragging tools.
on July 30, 2014
Something didn't feel right when I was reading the book and I couldn't quite put my finger on what it was. I came here and the reviews that Amazon users found most helpful, seemed to resonate true with me as well. Unsurprisingly, they were all negative.
You can tell by the way she writes, that she is a very positive and bubbly person. The book is well written and easy to read. I could imagine her having somewhat of an infectious personality, but when it comes to business I think she might be a little lacking.
After I was done with about 80% of her book, I decided to look up her pizza place "WILD" because she kept referring to it and saw all the bad reviews her business chain gets. Not only that, but its been a few years now, but the negative reviews are STILL pouring in. Sorry, but if she hasn't figured it out yet, a customer's opinion matters and anything below a 4 star average on YELP hurts/kills your business.
Now I didn't graduate from CORNELL or anything, but if RICH POSH people are complaining about the price of the pizza and the crummy service they are getting you would think that would be enough to IGNITE change. Especially since both problems are easily fixable.
1. Find people like herself (positive and bubbly) to be her front line and pay them a decent wage so they stick around (above minimum wage plus tips).
2. Pricing is a bit trickier considering her higher overhead but if I walked into a pizza place and paid $70 for a dinner for 2, I wouldn't be very pleased either.
After reading the reviews of her business and going back to her book, I think it really killed my enthusiasm for the book. It also didn't help that when I tuned back in she was talking about burning man and her romantic mock wedding. Unfortunately, such stories don't do much for a guy like me.
I have no doubt that Miki will succeed in her endeavors, especially if her mentors include people that attend summit series, and include the likes of Tim Ferris and Tony Hsieh, but maybe she should wait a few years and add some notches of experience under her belt before she decides to write another book.