©1955, 2001, 2003, 2004 Michael E. Gerber; (P)2004 HarperCollins Publishers, Inc.
"Gerber loves to exhort people to develop powerful visions for their companies." (Fortune)
Absolutely not. My conclusion is Gerber is a talented used car salesman. If you are selling used cars then this might be the book for you.
The book drags on and the stories and unnecessary detail are very forced. He also goes to great lengths to make himself appear like some kind of super hero. At one point in the book he is telling a "story" of a "man." The man is amazingly talented at everything but also easily distracted. BUT, let's not forget he's amazingly talented and in the end, everyone is in awe of him, even if they think he will fail they are in awe. I'm not kidding. He actually says something similar to this. Well, that person Gerber is talking about is himself. He even milks the big reveal of who the "man" is at one point. Yes, at times in this passage he makes it sound like he's being self deprecating which he is very deliberate about but the real message is how amazing he is.What I found particularly grating about this part was 1) Wait, how amazingly talented at EVERYTHING are you? I didn't get it the first 100 times.2) The guy has had three wives and 5 children amongst the three wives. Awesome dude. 3) The guy introduced his third wife as "much bigger than the others." That was the first thing he said about her. Again, it's directly aimed at winning points for Gerber to show how mature he has become and grown up. How about, still very shallow?
I don't know what it is about these guys that write self help and business books but they all come across as slimy. If he was your neighbor, you wouldn't want your kids around him type of slimy. Sorry, just my opinion. Luckily, I listened to the book on 2x speed and had no problems with understanding the audio (thank you audible). On 1x, Gerber is laborious. His tone gets really annoying. At one point he was narrating a list of bullet points and each line was read with the same, forced enthusiasm/creepiness to exact replication. It was like listening to a goofy robot on a broken record.Also, in the scenes where he is talking to the pie shop owner, I just got this creepy feeling about the whole presentation.
There is a scene where Gerber goes into a inordinate amount of detail about the listener viewing their own coffin. I get what he was trying to do but it was just a little too odd and forced. He could have skipped that part and just gotten straight to "what do you want people to remember about you?" Yes, I know, visualization but it was used incorrectly. It made pursuing that particular exercise much less desirable.
If you are a "no questions asked, I can sell anything" type of person, this might be for you, especially if you need some really basic guidance.If you have any degree of skepticism, you will have a hard time getting through this. It's not that there isn't value here, it's that you might come to the conclusion that although some of the content is helpful, the messenger is a charlatan. At first I gave this an overall score of 2 stars but I stopped listening to it after Gerber told the passage where he turned water into wine. If I can't complete a book, it shouldn't get more than a star.
The author clearly wanted to write a novel. The book is complete with descriptions of thoughts, fantasies and even detailed descriptions of smiles and sighs of the pie lady. It takes an eternity for the author to make a point. The whole book can be summed up by saying: If you start a business because you are good at and enjoy something; in order to be successful you will need to hire someone else to do that something so you can focus on management and growing the business. The goal is to make a business that runs so well that it can run without you and be franchised like McDonalds.
I can't believe how awful this book is given its reputation. Not only is it saccharine and patronizing with its absurd frame story about "Sarah" the pie shop owner, but it contains almost no tangible, useful information at all.
I thought it would be practical advice about running a business that doesn't have many people in it, thus being "small." Turns out E-Myth is entirely about setting up a very specific type of capital-S, capital-B Small Business- one where the same product/service is sold over and over again, ideally by the cheapest, least skilled drone employees, where the owner can remove themselves from the business as much as possible and then eventually sell it to someone else for a profit.
There are few high-level bits of information that are useful, but they could be summarized in about 15 minutes and ideally, by someone more eloquent. The rest is bloated, redundant text and wanking about how wonderful franchise businesses are.
I guess if you want to run a telemarketing office or a used car lot or a faux TGI Friday's, maybe this is of use. But if you happen to want to run a creative business, where the talent of yourself and your coworkers actually matters, there's little of use to be found here.
And the coup de grâce is the closing, where Gerber tries to upsell you on his expensive "coaches" and seminars. The entire book is a glorified time-share pitch. Barf. This is almost certainly a total waste of your time, seek wisdom elsewhere.
so cheesy I couldn't poop for a week. the business advice seems sound,but its weird emotional story throughout is way over the top.
Book nerd for life!
Yes, I think it should be revisited (no pun intended) at least annually to keep you on your toes.
When the author started telling his own story.
He had true passion in what he wrote and it showed in his performance
Yes! I listened to it in 2 sittings, but if I had time, I would've listened in one
It's not every book that offers a good story...combined with good information... and the author gives a great performance as well. Gerber's voice is so warm and comfortable... like watching Christmas Story about Ralph and his quest for a BB gun only without the other characters... only the narrator. Through this method of story telling, he was able to apply principles of entrepreneurship used by large corporations such as McDonalds and Disney to a small start up, Sarah's All About Pies. I have a small start-up myself and over the last 6 months have listened to lots of audible books on business and personal development. While the concept of working "on" the business rather than "in" the business is not new, this book was able to show me, in detail, how that sort of thinking would apply directly to my own venture. My own personal story is exactly what Gerber describes in this book... the "technician" who thinks he can use his skill to start a business and ends up simply creating another job for himself. After listening to this book, I am changing my approach.... and I feel good about it.
Great book... well done.
Some interesting ideas but author's long-winded style gets tedious. As someone who was once self-employed, I found this book's message was dead on. People start a business to get away from bosses, when what any business really needs is a boss, even if that's just being a boss of yourself.
Maybe I just hit this one at just the right time, but this has been the BEST marketing book that I have "read", EVER. Yep, the pace is a bit slow but It takes some time to soak up ideas as big as the ones in this book. Any quicker and things might get missed. Just one simple idea in this book is worth what I have paid for my entire Audible membership!
I have downloaded quite a collection of audio books related to business and this was my least favorite. It is written and read in a folksy manner, which was unappealing. As well, the content was not insightful or interesting. It was a difficult listen, but I slugged through all of it. I would not recommend this to anyone. I am surprised that it has such a high rating. If you are interested in better, yet still easy to follow, business-related material, I would suggest Rich Dad Poor Dad, The Millionaire Mind, and Dale Carnegie's book.
This book is about standardizing the processes of your business. If you know enough about that, you'll find the book underwhelming.
This book is for beginners. If you're an advanced business person, look else where.
"An absolute must read book for small business"
As a small business owner , its almost as if this book was written for me , I have read lots of seemingly similar books , but this is completely different and really makes a difference,already started to make changes -Thank You
"A Massive Insight For Me!!"
I have learned so much from this book that I have now listened to it twice, and as I progress in scaling up my business I will listen to it again and again for clarity and direction.
I've been a self employed tree surgeon for 15 years working in London UK, and for the past 18 months I have struggled to decide where and what I should be doing next as I have hit a ceiling point in my career and need to expand my business to move forward.
I recommend this audio book to anybody that is now struggling to serve the amount of customers they may have, that spend too much time working in their business as opposed to on their business, or have found themselves overwhelmed with keeping up with the day to day running of their business.
I'm 100% certain that you will take away a lot information in this book.
Ok, so I love the ideas that are put across in this book. The idea of looking at your small business from the top down instead of from the bottom up is something I had been struggling with in my own business. The idea of building your business as you would do a franchise is another great idea. It allows for the business to be scalable and repeatable and for non-skilled operators to work for you and help you in bringing you vision to fruition. The author knows what he is talking about as he has built his own franchise business.So here's the BUT... as a previous reviewer mentioned, there are several mentions of the authors own business where they align you with a coach who will help you develop your business. My issue with this is that the coaches have paid to do a coaching course and become part of the e-myth brand, essentially purchasing an out of the box franchise business. They haven't done the work of an entrepreneur, building something from the very bottom. They have just bought into the authors vision and have bought themselves a job, the antithesis of what this book is telling you to do. How can an e-myth coach have the 'expertise' to pass on something they haven't done themselves unless they already done the work, are financially independent and do it as a calling to give back to others? I'm not saying that the coaching they provide definitely wouldn't work, I'm simply saying that it is pretty expensive to be coached and I feel like finding some good local business mentors and investing into more business books and education would be more worthwhile than having a middle man pass on second hand knowledge.That said, this book has made me look at my business in a different way and has made me go to work ON my business and not IN it.
Possibly the best book on business I've ever read or listened too. This book has become my bible.
"It's all about Franchising!"
Just in case you hadn't worked it out from the cryptic title of the book it is actually a book about franchising a small business. I know nothing about the origins of the book, whether it was a trailblazer when it was released or indeed how respected Michael Gerber is in the business community. What I can say though is that this book is a thoroughly engaging introduction to franchising.
It is well written and takes the reader logically through the philosophy of franchising and why it may be a good idea for your business. Along the way it gives a lot of practical information without necessarily being an instruction manual. What it does is give you the framework to go research the implications for your business.
One thing to be aware of is that there is a lot of referencing his 'E-Myth' company and how it has helped thousands of small businesses to implement what's in the book. The book is therefore in small part a sales pitch to get you to go look for one of their 'consultants' (I'm sort of assuming these are e-myth 'Franchisees'...but i may be wrong!). You'll also notice that they use a lot off their own in-house jargon (like using the term 'turn key' business to describe franchises) but I'm sure there are more generic terms for these. Just go with the flow and take out what you need!
One last thing....You may need to hold back a laugh (I failed) when listening to the melodramatic interview sections which link the theory parts. For the record I don't think 'Sarah' and her pie company actually exists!
"Love the principals in this book"
The principals in this book are great!
If I'm being picky, the 'story of Sarah' within the book dragged on a little, however I did enjoy the book overall!
"Excellent book, given me a new perspective "
Has given me a new perspective on my business with the 'franchise' concept included within
"Systems to Small Business Freedom"
Fantastic listen, helping to switch your thinking as to why you're in business, and what your end goal is.
Great (audio) book. Plenty of take home messages.
Some stories less useful/meaningful, but some are superb.
Loved it... It gives insight into starting and maintaining a business. Thanks for this. Awesome
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