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The Illusions of Entrepreneurship: The Costly Myths That Entrepreneurs, Investors, and Policy Makers Live By Paperback – January 26, 2010
"Enlightenment Now: The Case for Reason, Science, Humanism, and Progress"
Is the world really falling apart? Is the ideal of progress obsolete? Cognitive scientist and public intellectual Steven Pinker urges us to step back from the gory headlines and prophecies of doom, and instead, follow the data: In seventy-five jaw-dropping graphs, Pinker shows that life, health, prosperity, safety, peace, knowledge, and happiness are on the rise. Learn more
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0;In this fact-filled, but fun-to-read book, Scott Shane demolishes many myths about entrepreneurship and in the process provides much-needed guidance to entrepreneurs, investors, and policymakers.1;2;Steve Crawford, Director, Social, Economic, and Workforce Programs Division, National Governor7;s Association
-- Steve Crawford
0;This fascinating book, by one of the most competent investigators of the subject, tells us how much we think we know about entrepreneurship that is just not true. It has already led me to change several of my lectures (with thanks to the author). This book is a must read for anyone who takes a serious interest in the subject of entrepreneurship.1;2;William J. Baumol, Academic Director, Center for Entrepreneurial Studies, Stern School of Business, New York University
-- William J. Baumol
"This makes an excellent reality-check for anyone considering beginning their own business."-Publishers Weekly
"For its myth-busting findings and analytical rigor, Mr. Shane''s book is a welcome addition to the literature on a crucial part of any modern economy." -- Nick Schulz "Wall Street Journal" (01/30/2008)
"The lessons in this book will perhaps save its readers a bundle of money that would otherwise be wasted on an ill-conceived business idea."-Morgan Lewis Jr., Inside Business -- Morgan Lewis Jr., "Inside Business"
"The belief that the U.S. is a relative haven for small businesses is one of the many bubbles burst by Scott Shane. . . . While he''s busting myths, Shane also unveils weaknesses in common entrepreneur practices." -- Mark Henricks "The Industry Standard" (02/08/2008)
"In this fact-filled, but fun-to-read book, Scott Shane demolishes many myths about entrepreneurship and in the process provides much-needed guidance to entrepreneurs, investors, and policymakers."-Steve Crawford, Director, Social, Economic, and Workforce Programs Division, National Governor's Association
"Scott has clearly and entertainingly shown why policy makers, entrepreneurs and investors should focus more attention on high growth, high potential start-ups and less on the ''me-too'' new companies than is currently the case."-David T. Morgenthaler, founder, Morgenthaler Ventures -- David T. Morgenthaler
"This fascinating book, by one of the most competent investigators of the subject, tells us how much we think we know about entrepreneurship that is just not true. It has already led me to change several of my lectures (with thanks to the author). This book is a must read for anyone who takes a serious interest in the subject of entrepreneurship."-William J. Baumol, Academic Director, Center for Entrepreneurial Studies, Stern School of Business, New York University -- William J. Baumol
"Business scholar Scott Shane debunks popular theories with research-based answers to questions such as why people start businesses, which industries are most popular for startups and what are the most common characteristics of the typical entrepreneur."--Mark Henricks, "Entrepreneur Magazine"
--Mark Henricks "Entrepreneur Magazine "
About the Author
Scott A. Shane is A. Malachi Mixon III Professor of Entrepreneurial Studies, Weatherhead School of Management, Case Western Reserve University. He is the author or editor of eleven books and more than sixty scholarly articles on entrepreneurship and innovation management. He lives in Shaker Heights, OH.
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Nowadays, there are thousands of books about entrepreneurship. Most of them build a false picture of the phenomenon. If you REALLY want to know about entrepreneurship this is the book you should buy. The book challenges the common myths about entrepreneurship and, drawing from rigorous research and data sources, describes entrepreneurship as it really occurs.
For example, the book shows the typical start-up isn't innovative, has no plans to grow, has one employee, and generates less than $100,000 dollars in revenue. It covers a wide range of fascinating topics like: What are today's entrepreneurial industries? How are new businesses financed? What makes some entrepreneurs more successful than others? How well does the typical entrepreneur do? How valuable is the average start-up?
The author of book is widely regarded within the academic community as the top entrepreneurship scholar in the world. I would strongly recommend his book to anyone who is serious about entrepreneurship.
It's not a guide to entrepreneurship and if you aren't sold on starting your own business, then it will probably seem rather gloomy. However, it's a good eye opener if you have a decent job and have considered starting a company just to not have to work for somebody else. Would defeinitely recommend it if you are thinking about starting your own business but are on the fence.
The conclusion set forth in the end seemed a bit rushed (it's all mentioned in the last 2 pages) but I think the previous chapters are worth it.
It also has a lot of references (almost half the book pages are filled with references), so depending on what kind of reader you are, that might be (or not) a good thing.
Scott A. Shane is an academic and, yes, that does come through in his work. However, the substance of this book can not be dismissed. Some entrepreneurs will feel a bit wounded, perhaps because he hits a bit too close to home, but that is a reason to carefully, and as impartially as possible, consider his points. I grew up in a business owning family, so did my husband. We own four small businesses between us now. My world, outside of my formal education, has been little but small business oriented. I've confronted many of the myths and recognized them as such. People who succeed understand them. People who refuse to come to terms with them most likely fail.
I know the spirit of an entrepreneur. It is not one without flaws. Is is one that people succeed in spite of. The strongest parts of entrepreneurial spirit pull those who are successful through, but the weaknesses Shane notes really do play a significant part in the high failure rate, and the fact that many of those who survive do so "barely."
While this review indicates I've purchased this book, it does not indicate that I've purchased many copies of this book. Every time I meet someone new who is in a pseudo-governmental position tasked with helping small businesses, I give them a copy. You can not help unless you fully understand and believing myths and fallacies is not helpful. This point of view is critical to developing a solid picture of the world portrayed.