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Thinking Like An Entrepreneur: How To Make Intelligent Business Decisions That Will Lead To Success In Building And Growing Your Own Company Hardcover – September, 1999

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Editorial Reviews


"I can't say enough good stuff about this book. My copy--I've read it twice--is highlighted and written in. Some of the chapters--like the one dealing with marketing--I've already used. And, others have taught me things I didn't know. It's twenty-seven chapters of jammed packed, good reading." -- Carmen Slaybaugh, FindYourDream

"I have not read a better book for entrepreneurs." -- Paul Tulenko, Syndicated Small Business Columnist

"It may look like a book, but it reads like a friend--that kindly uncle who sits you down and takes away your fears of going into business. Have more fun and earn more money; he tells you how. Before you know what hit you, you're calculating expectation values. You're comparing risk taking with risk shifting. You're crunching numbers. Voluntarily! ... ...Take it from someone who entered the business world bitching and moaning and wishing she had expendable hair to tear. Whether you're just starting up or you're a company owner with success under your belt and an appetite for more, you'll be glad you let Peter teach you to think like an entrepreneur." -- Rose Rosetree writes in the Winter Issue of Pathways

"Peter Hupalo's Thinking Like An Entrepreneur is a superb guide to making intelligent business decisions. Comprehensive, easy-to-read, even inspirational, Hupalo focuses on the key factors of good entrepreneurial decision making..." -- Midwest Book Review's December issue of Internet Book Watch

"The book is broad on topics and brief in content, hitting main points and driving home the realities of being an entrepreneur. With its diverse topics and solid information, you'll get a well-balanced meal on making healthy business decisions as an entrepreneur." -- IdeaCafe

From the Author

I hope Thinking Like An Entrepreneur will be useful reading for anyone becoming or contemplating becoming an entrepreneur. I tried to capture the decision-making thought process behind successful entrepreneurship. Although there are probably no hard and fast rules that define a successful venture or a successful businessperson, I believe that most successful entrepreneurs are very much alert to financial decision-making issues that affect their businesses.

Start-up companies that achieve high growth usually are able to maintain high profit margins and good cash flow, for example. Being able to do so is intimately tied to the type of business you want to start.

It is impossible to maintain high margins as a grocery retailer. But, a high-end dating service can maintain large margins. By estimating your profit margins before you start your business, you will be better able to compare one possible venture idea to another. The main flavor of the book is to go through important fundamental issues, such as profit margins, and discuss how and why they are important to your new business--to show you that the potential success or failure of your venture is highly dependent upon these factors.

Today is the age of the entrepreneur due to the huge number of non-capital-intensive companies that can be started. The Internet has played a significant role in opening up entrepreneurial opportunities. TLE is very appropriate to anyone contemplating starting an online business and tends to have a slight focus on computer consulting, multimedia, and specialized solution provider companies (companies that custom write software for other companies). These businesses have a good business model behind them. Because of this such companies can grow really fast.

Yet, the underlying ideas of TLE are applicable to any type of business you might be starting. So whether you contemplating starting a dating service, or an online-specialty shop, or a software company, you will hopefully find something useful to you.

Two or three of the twenty-seven chapters are a bit mathematical. But, I think understanding them is well within the reach of most serious entrepreneurs. If you can add, multiply, and divide, you can understand the principles. Yet, I felt a bit of math was essential to show, for example, how the nature of compounding wealth within a business really works. To understand the importance of both the rate of return you are able to achieve and the time interval in which you achieve this return is very important. So is understanding what exactly is limiting your overall growth. Many new entrepreneurs miss, for example, how cash flow can limit how quickly they are able to grow the business they contemplate. Understanding these factors will help you get richer faster! Understanding these factors will encourage you to start a business that is more likely to succeed. Yet, I hope I have kept the book very readable and enjoyable.

Many people who contemplate starting a business never will. They are, as I say, "Bernoullied." This means they are afraid of taking a risk. I hope this book will show you that by carefully selecting the business you undertake, you can greatly reduce this risk. You can put the odds of success more in your favor. While it is true that the only way you can really build huge wealth is via entrepreneurship, running your own business offers far more than a great opportunity for building wealth. It offers the chance to do whatever it is that you really want to do with your life.

The overriding goal of TLE is to show you the option of entrepreneurship. Most people have preconceived ideas of what they will be able to achieve with their lives. What they see as attainable is related to what they have learned and what they have seen. The ideal reader of this book is a graduate from a technical college who is working for others as a multimedia designer or computer programmer and who feels he or she would love to build a multimedia or programming company, but yet is frightened that building such a company is way too difficult.


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 272 pages
  • Publisher: HCM Publishing (September 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0967162408
  • ISBN-13: 978-0967162409
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.8 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,149,282 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

50 of 56 people found the following review helpful By Terry Gold on May 26, 2002
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Peter Hupalo has written a unique book for Entrepreneurs. I've read a lot of books about business and entrepreneurship, but this one is different. It speaks to people just thinking about starting a business and yet it has a lot to offer to the veteran entrepreneur.
If you're thinking about starting a business, the first few chapters will do a great job of helping you think about the risks in quitting a "safe" job and starting your own company. It's not as risky as you might think. This isn't the book to read about business licenses or accounting systems - it is much more important than that! It really is as the title suggests a book about thinking like an entrepreneur.
I've been in business for more than 10 years, but I'm still making mistakes and trying to learn new things. A mark of a good book for me is the number of pages that I dog-ear to mark interesting ideas. My copy of Thinking Like an Entrepreneur has at least 20 pages marked, and I've referred back to it many times since I finished reading it. It will definitely go on my favorites shelf of business books. I've already recommended it to my entrepreneur friends.
The author's style is to mix stories about experiences from actual entrepreneurs with good step-by-step walkthroughs of "thinking like an entrepreneur". It is 272 pages with 27 chapters. Each chapter can stand alone, making it easy to focus on the areas you're really interested in while skimming the ones that don't apply so much to your business. Peter seems to have a technology background, but I think any businessperson will find a lot to learn in this book.
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34 of 39 people found the following review helpful By Gadgester HALL OF FAME on October 18, 2000
Format: Hardcover
Initially I was a little skeptical about this book, because I could not find anything about what the author actually does for a living. I was expecting another "let me show you how to write the best business plan" kind of book. Instead, I found a very enjoyable and practical book that should be a must-read for every aspiring entrepreneur, regardless of which industry this aspiration may lie in.
The 266-page book is divided into 27 chapters, each covering a specific topic. That makes about 10 pages per chapter, which translates into material that's easily understandable and digestable. Topics covered range from risk assessment to basic accounting (very basic indeed, but an excellent way to start especially becuase many of us find accounting unbearably boring) to managing resources to, yes, writing a business plan. The author mixes his philosophical musings along with anecdotes and hard business lessons (like calculating NPV and profits). His constant humor and approachable style make the book very easy and fun to read.
The emphasis of the book is on how an entrepreneur should *think*. Of course, thinking often is not enough; action is also paramount. But starting with the right mindset increases the chance of success -- and also helps one live more happily. The author points out very early on that we all fear failure, and this fear holds most of us back from starting our own businesses. He then delves into how we can overcome this fear partially by analyzing the risks associated with an adventure. This approach makes the subject much less boring than one otherwise expects and also makes the material easier to absorb. As Zhuangzi, the ancient Chinese philosopher, once said, "Starting with the right mind set increases your chance of success tenfold.
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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Donald Mitchell HALL OF FAMETOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on September 24, 2004
Format: Paperback
The title of this book is a little misleading. It is not helping you learn how to think like an entrepreneur. In fact, the book teaches you how to more accurately make assessments that entrepreneurs have to make. If you do that, your entrepreneurial success should be higher.

I like books about avoiding thought patterns that delay or derail progress, and thoroughly enjoyed this one. In many ways, the book parallels the outstanding book about personal decision-making, Smart Choices, that I strongly recommend you read as well.

Why, then, did I rate the book at four stars rather than five? Basically, the book didn't quite get the editing it deserved. There are some minor misspellings of the sort that should have been caught. More seriously, the book indulges in unnecessary vulgar language in a few places. If those things don't bother you, see this as a five star book. It certainly is in every other way.

Some of the subjects include how to overcome risk aversion, how to lay off risk, picking the type of business to go into, establishing a business model that has the best chance of success, and how to have the business match your personality and preferences. These are subjects I feel are important for any entrepreneur, and are often not covered by business books. I was especially impressed by the focus on ethics and high moral tone of the advice.

This book will have value both for people who are thinking about becoming entrepreneurs and those who are already running small businesses. Since the book often focuses on computer consulting and computer-based training, those who are in those fields will find the book to be especially valuable.
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