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So, You Want to Start a Business?: 8 Steps to Take Before Making the Leap Paperback


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So, You Want to Start a Business?: 8 Steps to Take Before Making the Leap + The Road to Organic Growth: How Great Companies Consistently Grow Marketshare from Within + Grow to Greatness: Smart Growth for Entrepreneurial Businesses
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: FT Press; 1 edition (August 30, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0137126670
  • ISBN-13: 978-0137126675
  • Product Dimensions: 8.9 x 5.9 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.9 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #464,871 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Two former corporate executives, entrepreneurs, and now professors Hess and Goetz combine their wisdom and experience to offer new and wannabe business owners some critical thinking, management strategies, and tried-and-tested pointers. Their book is written in a simple albeit very academic style, with logical headlines, practical sidebars, and summarized “lessons learned” at the end of each chapter. Although the authors are generous about sharing the ABC’s of business, whether it’s how to find and keep good employees or explanations of financial gotta-haves, the overall subtitle—8 Steps to Take—gets buried in a welter of other numbers: the 8 mistakes business owners make (e.g., pricing incorrectly), the 7 techniques to get a customer to try your product (references/testimonials), the rule of 3s and the rule of 7s (only manage 7 or fewer people at any given time). Use this as a novice’s springboard (and remind the authors to follow their own advice: keep it simple!). --Barbara Jacobs

About the Author

Edward D. Hess, JD, LLM, has spent most of his business life advising entrepreneurs and financing their business ventures. He is currently Professor of Business Administration and Batten Executive-in-Residence at the Darden School of Business, University of Virginia. He founded and led the Center for Entrepreneurship and Corporate Growth and the Values-Based Leadership Institute at the Goizueta Business School, Emory University. His books include The Successful Family Business, The Search For Organic Growth, and The Road To Organic Growth. He has personally built three successful service businesses. His website is www.EDHLTD.com.

 

Charles F. Goetz, MBA, Distinguished Lecturer in Entrepreneurship at Emory’s Goizueta Business School, has built nine successful businesses in six industries. He serves on the boards of several entrepreneurial ventures and not-for-profits. He recently published The Great Entrepreneurial Divide. His specialties are marketing, customer acquisition, and product development.


More About the Author

Edward D. Hess is a Professor of Business Administration and Batten Executive-in-Residence at the Darden Graduate School of Business, The University of Virginia.He spent over 30 years in the business world prior to joining academia as a lawyer, investment banker, strategy consultant, and entrepreneur.

He is the author/editor of 10 books, over 60 business school cases, and over 60 articles dealing with high performance organizations, growth, values-based leadership, and family businesses. His current research is in the areas of Smart Growth, managing the challenges of private company growth,growth leadership, growth systems, growth processes, and enduring organizations. His work can be found @ www.EDHLTD.com. His work has appeared in over 250 media outlets worldwide the last 4 years including WSJ Radio, Dow Jones Radio,Bloomberg Radio, CNBC, NPR, Fox Business News, Forbes, Bloomberg, Business Week, Investor's Business Daily, CFO Magazine, Leadership Excellence, Chief Learning Officer, Washington Post, Financial Executive,Big Think, Business Insider, MSNBC Radio, and Money Magazine.

He has extensive experience advising and financing growth companies and multi-generational family businesses. He also has extensive research and consulting experience in the areas of public company organic growth and is the co-author of the Darden Growth/Innovation Model. His organic growth research has produced the concepts of The Growth System, The Growth Risks Audit, The Organic Growth Index financial model, and The Organic Growth Progression.

His business experience includes tenures with Warburg Paribas Becker, Boettcher & Company, The Robert M. Bass Group, Jones Lang Wooten, and Arthur Andersen Finance.

He is a Magna Cum Laude graduate of the University of Florida, and obtained a J.D. from the University of Virginia and an LL.M. ( Taxation) from New York University.

He was raised in Carrollton, Georgia and worked his way through college as a student football mathematician for the Florida Gators. He is happily ( most days) married, loves to cook, travel, read, and play with his grandchildren and two tibetian terriers.

Customer Reviews

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Very readable, it's packed full of practical steps, philosophies and tips.
Martin
I would strongly recommend the book to anyone who is thinking about starting a new business or looking for some quick hints on how to run an existing business well.
John Gibbs
This book is a goldmine of information you need in order to tweek your business plan so your business will be as successful as possible.
Jeff Lippincott

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
What a book. Just wonderful. I've been reading books on business plans and books related to business plans on and off over the past couple of years. I have found a number of adequate books on business plans, but this book (and "The Business Rules" ISBN: 1599180618) both do a pretty good job explaining what you need to know in order to write a great business plan.

Neither book tells you how to write a business plan. However, they are great books to help you polish up the business plan you have already written. If you are interested in preparing a great business plan, or in need of some strategic planning regarding a business plan you have already written, then I highly recommend you get a copy of either or both books and study them.

Included in this book is great content related to what the author claims to be 124 Business Lessons spread over 10 chapters as follows:

0. Introduction
1. Can you be a successful entrepreneur? (15 lessons)
2. Basic rules of business success (8 lessons)
3. What is a good business opportunity? (10 lessons)
4. How do you choose the right business customers? (9 lessons)
5. How do you design your product or service? (14 lessons)
6. What is the right price for your product or service? (9 lessons)
7. How can you overcome customer inertia? (9 lessons)
8. How to manage your business (22 lessons)
9. How do you find and keep good employees? (15 lessons)
10. How do you manage growth? (13 lessons)
11. Conclusion

As you read this book with your business plan in mind I guarantee you will think of many things you have left out of your business plan that should have been included.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Jacob on November 8, 2010
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The book is a useful run down of the things you NEED to think about before starting your own business. It poses questions you need to be able to answer about your own venture before runnng with it.

The only short coming of this book are the often short explanations about "how" to do something. This book answers more the "why" plan your business and "what" to plan but not really how to go about it.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Eric Barger on November 8, 2008
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
If you are thinking about starting your first business, you are already counting the money you will make. Do yourself a favor and read this book before you make the leap. It will save you a lot of heartburn and after you have started.

Being a large business owner and the owner of a new startup company, I can tell you from personal first-hand experience every word in this book should be taken to heart. Be brave and go for it, but know the pitfalls that most people fall into after they have started their business.

One example from the book is that people who are ready to start their own business are counting the money they are already going to make. I have been there and done that. It was nice to see a book that will ground you so you don't make the mistake of succumbing to the negatives that outlook can have.

Read the book! Be successful! Make lots of money and do it wisely!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By CrimsonYell on May 25, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I very much enjoyed this book. It does an excellent job assisting a non-business person (like me) in thinking about all of the things one needs to do to get a business on solid foundation before making such a huge investment (both in time and money).

The book is structured to cover one main topic per chapter, and it does so in an excellent way. The authors harp incessantly in the early chapters about making sure you have a profitable business idea, not just a good idea. I appreciated this because I believe there is an important distinction.

It also spends many, many pages discussing the importance of customer service. Another important point that many failed small businesses did not grasp. My partner was once turned away from a small business three times due to poor customer service policies despite him almost begging for the business's help (it was a battery store). The employees simply didn't want to take the time to help him. Now, they are unemployed or in a new line of work.

This book won't make you rich. It won't give you any good business ideas. However, it will give your business idea a stress test and help you improve any weaknesses in your existing plan. It is also sold at a good price ($9.89 for Kindle for me).

I would highly recommend this book for any person who wants to start a business but feels like they lack some business knowledge. Very good investment for the right person.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Luisa on November 9, 2010
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Covers all the basics and gives the person trying to start a business a detailed insight of what they are getting themselve into, I would truly recommend this book!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By John Gibbs TOP 1000 REVIEWER on November 4, 2010
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The common mistakes made by people starting businesses include choosing a bad business, choosing the wrong customers, selling the wrong product, using the wrong prices, not selling fast enough, not executing well, employing the wrong people and mismanaging growth, according to Edward Hess and Charles Goetz in this book.

The book goes on to describe how to manage each of these areas of a new business correctly so that the pitfalls are avoided. Most of the chapters deal with issues related to getting a new business going, but chapter 8 contains a crash course in principles for managing a business, chapter 9 gives advice on finding an employing good people, and chapter 10 discusses the issues that arise as a business expands.

There are plenty of books on starting a business, and most of them cover similar territory. However, most of them are not very interesting to read. What makes this short book stand out from the others is the clear, concise and engaging way in which it is written, with summaries of "lessons learned" at the end of each chapter and resources for further learning at the end. I would strongly recommend the book to anyone who is thinking about starting a new business or looking for some quick hints on how to run an existing business well.
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