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EntreLeadership: 20 Years of Practical Business Wisdom from the Trenches Hardcover – September 20, 2011
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From New York Times bestselling author and nationally syndicated talk radio host Dave Ramsey comes the secret to how he grew a multimillion dollar company from a card table in his living room. Your company is only as strong as your leaders. These are the men and women doing battle daily beneath the banner that is your brand. Are they courageous or indecisive? Are they serving a motivated team or managing employees? Are they valued? Your team will never grow beyond you, so here’s another question to consider. Are you growing? Whether you’re sitting at the CEO’s desk, the middle manager’s cubicle, or a card table in your living-room-based startup, EntreLeadership provides the practical, step-by-step guidance to grow your business where you want it to go. Dave opens up his championship playbook for business to show you how to: • Inspire your team to take ownership and love what they do • Unify your team and get rid of all gossip • Handle money to set your business up for success • Reach every goal you set • And much, much more!
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If I hadn't read this book last year, there's no way I would be where I am today. I wouldn't have had a plan, been able to motivate employees, or handle the growth we experienced. I even had one of my employees read certain chapters of this book throughout the year to get us on the same page and help him grow in his leadership capabilities. I'm planning to read it again this year in order to try to take my business to the next level again. I compiled in the back a list of other books that he cited in the book as I read - in itself it is a great bibliography for business and leadership. And be sure not to miss the bonus chapters online, they're just as good as the rest of the book.
I highly recommend this book to anyone who owns a business or is in management to any degree.
May of the principles that apply to running a business also apply to running your life. For example, chapter 2 focuses on dreams, mission and purposes statements, and the like. Everyone, including freelance writers, need to have a solid grip on what their purposes is. Like "Fiddler on the Roof," each of us must determine "who he is and what God expects him to do."
And chapter 3 is about time management and prioritization. Freelance writers, as all other people, need to know what comes first, what come second, and what the big things are in in life. Are we doing the most important things we need to be doing day by day?
Chapters 8 and 10 also apply to me. They focuses on salesmanship, and marketing. Ramsey proclaims that the key to marketing is service. If you serve people, then sales will take care of themselves. Writers sell their articles and books and manuscripts. The sale pattern--qualification, rapport, education/information, close--can help writers, or anyone, get heir message and manuscript out in the open (167).
And chapter 9, on money and budgets. Freelancers have irregular income. Therefore we need to take special care to have our cash flow under control, and that we are sticking to the irregular income budget.
So the key things is to find relevant principles, and see how they apply to your work. A person like me can even use the latter chapters that focus on the nuts-and-bolts of running a business. This is the concept of "YOU, inc."
One of the books sportiest features are the smart-phone videos. Those newfangled 3D bar codes are in the book. And, if like me, you do not have newfangled gizmos, you can get the videos online. An upgrade from the DVD in Covey's book.
The book does have some weaknesses. In Good to Great and the Social Sectors: A Monograph to Accompany Good to Great, Jim Collins makes the point that business thinking may not be the answer for private-sector or religious-sector problems. So must must adapt things. This book has the same weakness, but also the same potential--if we are astute.
Another has to do with wisdom. Although Ramsey warns us no to "freak out" and assets that "you are not about to enter the Christian theology of business zone" (3)(Business By The Book: Complete Guide of Biblical Principles for the Workplace), he has 8 quotes from Proverbs--which is Jewish scripture (Thou Shall Prosper: Ten Commandments for Making Money). He has the same ticklishness that Covey has with his Mormonism: their values drive their books and success, but they are shy about "coming out of the closet."
Also, this book does not discuss wisdom. Dave has wisdom, and he seeks wisdom (86), but he does not talk about wisdom as part of his success. Compare this to Covey's "The 8th Habit: From Effectiveness to Greatness," which proclaims that the Information Age with give way to the Wisdom Age. Wisdom is crucial, since it is the basis for mission statements and prioritization.
When I set this book down, I had the feeling that I had just read a one-volume MBA.
And that may be true.
Very good insights into running and growing a business. Unique from other biz books.
This supports One Minute Manager books in terms of respecting employees while still being real with them.
Many useful ideas in here Ramsey has used.