- Imitation Leather: 224 pages
- Publisher: Dey Street Books; Lea edition (October 21, 2014)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0062322613
- ISBN-13: 978-0062322616
- Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.8 x 8.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 287 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #112,723 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Me, Inc.: Build an Army of One, Unleash Your Inner Rock God, Win in Life and Business Imitation Leather – October 21, 2014
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“The hard-learned wisdom laid out here is a road map for success that anyone can benefit from.” (John Varvatos, from his foreword for Me, Inc.)
“You literally can turn to any page, pick a random sentence and likely find potent words of wisdom.” (Wall Street Journal)
“Underneath Kiss bassist Gene Simmons’s makeup is a shrewd businessman. In this advice book, he doles out tips for entrepreneurs and anyone who wants to get ahead.” (Parade)
“The only time it’s acceptable to take advice from someone in Kabuki makeup and a metal plated codpiece is when he’s sold more than 20 million albums and has 10 platinum records. And let’s not get started on the thousands of Kiss licensing deals Simmons helped bring to the band.” (Fortune)
“Why should we do what Simmons says? Well, for starters, Simmons-a notorious rock star, raconteur, and business maven-has a global cultural recognition just a few pegs below Mickey Mouse, Coca-Cola, and Superman.” (Men’s Health)
“Brutally honest business advice . . . Simmons . . . distills 40 years of leading the global-phenomenon rock band, which has franchised into a billion pieces of merchandise, including everything from comic books to a coffee shop.” (New York Post)
From the Back Cover
The quintessential self-made man, master of brand identity, New York Times bestselling author, and award-winning executive—KISS's Gene Simmons—shares his manifesto for business success.
KISS did not become one of the most successful rock bands in history by accident. Long before he first took the stage, Gene Simmons had a clear-cut operating plan for the business. Over the past forty years, KISS has sold more than 100 million CDs and DVDs worldwide and manages 5,000 licensed merchandise items—from comic books and coffins to action figures and video games. The band received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, and in 2014 was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. In addition to KISS, Simmons's lucrative ventures include two hit reality shows, a professional sports team, a restaurant chain, and a record label. A recipient of the Forbes Lifetime Achievement Award, this brilliant executive runs all of his businesses on his own—no personal assistant, few handlers, and as little red tape as possible.
In Me, Inc., Simmons gives aspiring entrepreneurs the critical tools they need to succeed. He discusses how to build a solid business strategy, harness the countless tools available in the digital age, educate yourself, and be the architect for the business entity that is you. Inspired by The Art of War, Me, Inc. is organized around thirteen specific, easy-to-understand principles for success—"The Art of More"—drawn from Simmons's own triumphs and failures. From finding the confidence necessary to get started, to surrounding yourself with the right people, to knowing when to pull the plug and when to double-down, these principles can help you attain the freedom and wealth of your dreams.
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The first part is actually pretty interesting. It traces his life from being born in Israel in poverty and then coming to America and how he comes through, working hard and earning money to support his mother and then on to establishing KISS. Unfortunately the meaty parts are really short. The early parts of his life is really interesting and the impressions of a young poor boy coming to America is page-turning material but after turning a page, then that material runs out. While his experience with capitalism is interesting it's also slightly off-putting in a way. Perhaps it is in the missing empathy for other life-styles that is offending to me. Simmons tells us about his way but without remorse and portrays it as the only way.
The second part of the book is not better. There Simmons boils down the lessons he learned throughout life to let the reader make their own fortune. But it's again only grounded in his own experience which simply cannot work for everybody. Simmons' intense focus on earning money is also jarring as it seems like the purpose of earning money is to earn more money. It's great if it works for him, but the book discards trivial things like vacations and human relationships for the sole reason of earning more money. Simmons also believes that if what you do is what you love, then apparently it's also something that you can do indefinitely without rest or focusing on health.
I went into this book hoping that it would be a fun read with some few golden truths packaged in stories from the rock world which I don't know anything about. Instead it's a one-sided tale from a workaholic who doesn't seem to care much about the fact that money is a tool, a means to the end, but focuses on how to make more and more money with no regard on anything else but money. I would not recommend this if you're looking for business advice or as a biography (I think he has written a proper autobiography).