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The Entrepreneur Equation: Evaluating the Realities, Risks, and Rewards of Having Your Own Business Paperback – March 6, 2012
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Itâs time to drop the rose-colored glasses and face the facts: most new businesses fail, with often devastating consequences for the would-be entrepreneur.
The Entrepreneur Equation helps you do the math before you set down the entrepreneurial path so that you can answer more than just "Could I be an entrepreneur?" but rather "Should I be an entrepreneur?". By understanding
what it takes to build a valuable business as well as how to assess the risks and rewards of business ownership based on your personal circumstances, you can learn how to stack the odds of success in your favor and ultimately decide if business ownership is the best possible path for you, now or ever.
Through illustrative examples and personalized exercises, tell-it-like-it-is Carol Roth helps you create and evaluate your own personal Entrepreneur Equation as you:
Learn what it takes to be a successful entrepreneur in today's
Save money, time and effort by avoiding business ownership when the
time isn't right for you.
Identify and evaluate the risks and rewards of a new business based
on your goals and circumstances.
Evaluate whether your dreams are best served by a hobby, job or
Gain the tools that you need to maximize your business success.
The Entrepreneur Equation is essential reading for the aspiring entrepreneur. Before you invest your life savings, invest in this book!
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A one-owner business is not a "job-business" as the author purports (try telling the tax authorities that your one-owner business isn't really a business but a job. Good luck with that one). A one-owner business is still a bona-fide business because the owner is engaged in commerce and in the operation of a commercial enterprise. The fundamentals to run a one-owner enterprise are the same as running a large corporate enterprise. The only difference is size or scalability, but the fundamentals are the same. As an owner, it's YOUR responsibility to decide what size business is best for YOU. There is no one right way.
The underlying issue faced by most self-employed and small business owners is that they're often trying to operate a business with an "employee mentality" and lack a "serious business attitude." This is especially the case if you've been a successful employee for 10, 20, 30, or even 50 years. The skills and attitude needed to be a good employee are different than what's required to be self-employed or a business owner. Just because you start a business or become an independent advisor, attorney, freelancer, etc. doesn't mean that you no longer think like an employee. To make the mental shift, you must make a concerted and intentional effort to change your mentality because the employee mindset is deeply ingrained (starts with our early schooling).
If you're starting or currently own a business with the idea that you're a "job-owner" and that your "customers are your boss" (and everyone else you do business with) as suggested by the author, then you're approaching your venture with an employee mentality. Your customers don't determine the direction or success of your business. YOU DO! This is why you're the BOSS! You're not an employee anymore! Your customers and business associates are your "partners." The business owner-customer relationship is peer-to-peer where equal value is being created. Your customers get services or goods of value, and you as an owner also get something of value (usually monetary). It's a value-for-value relationship. It's not a command-and-control or hierarchical (employer-employee) type of relationship. It's commerce; lateral or a flat type of relationship.
As an aside, many criminal organizations are sole proprietorships (unincorporated businesses) where the bosses are directly involved in the business. I doubt very few people would deny that these businesses (albeit illegal) are REAL businesses (the government sure doesn't). I also doubt that these criminal heads view their customers and business associates as their bosses. But you see, there's a different mentality at play. Criminal organization bosses have a serious business attitude and don't think like an employee. They know that they're engaged in a commercial enterprise and they run their operations as such. In contrast, those of us who have been indoctrinated to be good employees tend to do quite the opposite.
I would be in support of this book if it encouraged business owners to adopt a serious business attitude and encouraged the need for a shift to independence in one's mentality before getting in business or commerce. But unfortunately, the book promotes a mentality or philosophy (in the spirit of "telling it like it is") I feel is very damaging to aspiring and current entrepreneurs. On this basis, I strongly recommend that you skip on this book and purchase a book that helps you to make the mental shift from an employee or paycheck mentality to a self-employed mindset or serious business mentality.
Unfortunately, the people who need these lessons are probably the ones who will ignore them. New and aspiring business owners will probably shrug off these lessons as "not applying to them" or believe they "will be different". It's a lot like a 40-year old parent trying to impart his wisdom on a teenager. The teenager isn't going to listen, and is going to have learn all of those things himself the hard way. Oh well.
I enjoyed the book because it confirmed for me that all of the small business lessons I've learned over the years apply to others. I'm not the only one who struggles with these things. WooHoo, I'm not crazy!