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The Personal MBA: Master the Art of Business | [Josh Kaufman]

The Personal MBA: Master the Art of Business

Josh Kaufman founded PersonalMBA.com as an alternative to the business school boondoggle. His blog has introduced hundreds of thousands of readers to the best business books and most powerful business concepts of all time. Now, he shares the essentials of entrepreneurship, marketing, sales, negotiation, operations, productivity, systems design, and much more, in one comprehensive volume. The Personal MBA distills the most valuable business lessons into simple, memorable mental models that can be applied to real-world challenges.
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Publisher's Summary

Audie Award Nominee, Business and Educational, 2013

Getting an MBA is an expensive choice - one almost impossible to justify regardless of the state of the economy. Even the elite schools like Harvard and Wharton offer outdated, assembly-line programs that teach you more about PowerPoint presentations and unnecessary financial models than what it takes to run a real business. You can get better results (and save hundreds of thousands of dollars) by skipping business school altogether....

Josh Kaufman founded PersonalMBA.com as an alternative to the business school boondoggle. His blog has introduced hundreds of thousands of readers to the best business books and most powerful business concepts of all time. Now, he shares the essentials of entrepreneurship, marketing, sales, negotiation, operations, productivity, systems design, and much more, in one comprehensive volume.

The Personal MBA distills the most valuable business lessons into simple, memorable mental models that can be applied to real-world challenges.

True leaders aren't made by business schools - they make themselves, seeking out the knowledge, skills, and experience they need to succeed. Read this book and you will learn the principles it takes most business professionals a lifetime of trial and error to master.

©2010, 2012 Worldly Wisdom Ventures LLC (P)2012 Worldly Wisdom Ventures LLC

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What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

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Performance
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  •  
    M. Kessler 12-28-14
    M. Kessler 12-28-14 Member Since 2014
    ratings
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    6
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    "An overview"

    Rather quick overview of a lot of simple topics, some more complex than others. It was a good intro that pulls a lot of things together. can't replace an mba as author agrees as it requires a lot of personal learning which this book offers a good start.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    S. Seigel Planet Earth 11-22-14
    S. Seigel Planet Earth 11-22-14 Member Since 2015
    HELPFUL VOTES
    3
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    31
    3
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    27
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    Performance
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    "Good info, but not especially suited to audio"
    Where does The Personal MBA: Master the Art of Business rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    I'd say it's in the low-middle. The author narrates and thus well understands his material. On the other hand, he's no voice actor and that costs him. I think Josh might have done a bit better to have practiced on some other materials for a few months to develop this skill. Voice acting is at least as hard as stage acting and much harder than routine public speaking or film/TV acting (because all you have to work with is your voice). The mistaken notion that it's as easy as reading your children a bedtime story is soundly disproven here. What confuses me is that ACX kind of showcases Josh as an author-narrator success story.


    What did you like best about this story?

    I love the content. There are so many ideas that I can't choose one.


    What three words best describe Josh Kaufman’s voice?

    Sincere, idiosyncratic, unpolished


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    No way. The delivery is encyclopedic and unsuited to my normal audiobook context: driving. It's more for sleepy time or perhaps quick, tip-of-the-day type listening at my desk.


    Any additional comments?

    Josh has the capacity to do this well--even professionally. I'd suggest he make an effort to do more acting work as well as radio interviews, podcasting, etc.. He also needs coaching from a spoken word accent and voice coach. I did such work in Korea, and I know firsthand how it can dramatically improve anyone's ability to speak with poise, engagement and polish.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Fitness Guy USA 11-07-14
    Fitness Guy USA 11-07-14 Member Since 2015

    I'm a personal trainer & a Registered Nurse. I own my own personal training studio, where I train a lot of clients w/ medical conditions :)

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    "Awesome book!!"
    Would you listen to The Personal MBA: Master the Art of Business again? Why?

    Great book and he does a good job keeping your attention. I personally really liked how he referenced a lot of other great books which I've read.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Josh United States 09-25-14
    Josh United States 09-25-14 Member Since 2013

    I love memoirs and books on personal triumphs and business. I like to learn, be inspired and relax while listening to my books.

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    "Great business advice and great reading list"
    Where does The Personal MBA: Master the Art of Business rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    Out of roughly 20 books on business that I have read I would easily say that The Personal MBA ranks in my top 5 books. Its a book I would listen to again, as well. However the book doesn't have completely groundbreaking ideas, nor does it proclaim to. It is a very solid compilation of lots of ideas from many very solid books. I would certainly recommend it.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    blu 08-08-14
    blu 08-08-14
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    15
    5
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    "Compact yet comprehensive."
    If you could sum up The Personal MBA: Master the Art of Business in three words, what would they be?

    Although I do appreciate all that I've learned from my actual MBA, I can't deny the value of the well organized nuggets Josh provides here. His voice is at times annoying, but not completely so.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Propctek 08-07-14
    Propctek 08-07-14
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    4
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    "Excellent Book!!!"
    Where does The Personal MBA: Master the Art of Business rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    Best book I have ever read regarding business and personal grow.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of The Personal MBA: Master the Art of Business?

    the whole book


    Have you listened to any of Josh Kaufman’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    no


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    yes.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mother of a 5 yr old 07-24-14
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    6
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    "Must have reference book"
    Would you consider the audio edition of The Personal MBA: Master the Art of Business to be better than the print version?

    Yes, only because is was narrated by Josh himself


    What other book might you compare The Personal MBA: Master the Art of Business to and why?

    To Brian Tracey's simpilfy your life


    Which character – as performed by Josh Kaufman – was your favorite?

    Josh


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

    Journey to success


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer Sweden 06-18-14
    Amazon Customer Sweden 06-18-14
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Not an MBA, but a decent resource"
    Where does The Personal MBA: Master the Art of Business rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    Above average


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    No. For those concepts that were new, I needed time to digest them, and since there are no notes supplied with the audio version, listening too quickly can mean you lose focus.


    Any additional comments?

    I think I remember others commenting about this, but skip the first chapter (about an hour). It's basically just the author telling you how MBAs suck, and you should follow his method. Not really sure what the purpose of this is since if you're already listening to/reading that chapter, then you've already paid for his book.

    In general, it's a reasonable summary of a lot of concepts related to business and psychology. I'm sure MBAs are flawed - especially in the States where you need to go into so much debt to get one! - but this isn't comprehensive enough to replace one.

    What it does do is give you a good idea of whether you'd actually like to take an MBA or not, whether it's an area that interests you or would just waste your time, and if all you need is an overview, then this is probably the book for you. There's plenty of extra reading material recommended throughout the book as well, so you can supplement your reading in those areas that interest you.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Anon 06-06-14
    Anon 06-06-14
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    "ABSOLUTE Waste of time."
    What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

    I've been listening for an hour and so far it is a total BS. He is just saying business schools are bad. Why the hell does he think he can get my money and talk non-sense for an hour about why business schools are bad. Pure saturated and concentrated bullshit.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jeff Topeka, KS, United States 06-05-14
    Jeff Topeka, KS, United States 06-05-14 Member Since 2014
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    4
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    "Too many evolution references"
    Any additional comments?

    The book is solid as far as delivering business concepts. One thing that annoyed me was his premise that all of his readers believe in evolution - that we used to be animals and thus aren't designed to sit at a desk. Oops - I said "designed"...I mean...we haven't evolved to be able to sit at a desk yet :)

    One or two references - no problem. However, the author hits it again and again and couple that with the fact that it was getting boring (it was the subject matter, not the performance), I shut it off about 1/2 way through the book.

    If you want a crash course in business, the book is fine, however.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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  • Stephen
    London, United Kingdom
    2/11/13
    Overall
    "Buyer Beware."

    Probably the worst audiobook I've ever heard.



    I thought this was going to be an interesting book - giving an overview of the topics covered in an MBA from a layman's point of view, with references to further reading materials. Instead, it was a 13 hour advert for some guy's blog.



    The first hour of the audiobook is setting the scene, with a variety of weak arguments about why an MBA is a waste of time and money, but giving absolutely no evidence that the Author's approach (of just reading lots of books without going to school) isn't also a waste of time and slightly less money.



    When he finally gets to the actual topic at hand, the material is covered at a very high level, and is mostly just a list of bullet points to think about. This would probably be slightly less useless in printed format than in audio form. Each brief chapter recommends further reading, and badgers you to go visit the author's blog.



    I would recommend anyone interested in this book to just skip the audiobook, go straight to the guy's website and look at his reading list. That will give you a good list of books that are more useful than this one.



    I would also caution that this is more of a self-help book than a business book. Many of the books that he recommends for further reading are also more about "motivation", than actually learning about business.

    9 of 12 people found this review helpful
  • Jamie
    3/2/15
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    Performance
    Story
    "Definitely worth a read"

    Was skeptical about this book because of other reviews. But I found it very helpful. It gives a clear introduction to a variety of areas and provides recommendations for further reading

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Nicolai
    Denmark
    11/5/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Waste of time"
    What disappointed you about The Personal MBA: Master the Art of Business?

    First 1/3 part of this audio book is mostly a waste of time. It's a very basic overview of some complicated tasks you'll meet in business live.

    This can't really serve as much more than a index card for what you need to learn - anyhow that is also the point of the book: don't waste many years in school and spend all your money learning these topics, when you can learn them from books.


    2 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Amazon Customer
    SHEFFIELD, United Kingdom
    4/17/13
    Overall
    "Better than expected"

    The previous review put me off purchasing this, but I had seen the book and decided to give it a go.



    I was glad I did - I found the information very easy to understand and useful: it has helped me to see where I am going right in my two businesses as well as spot where I am going wrong. It is thought provoking and has helped me think about things - for this reason it has been a worthwhile purchase.



    The author does mention his website - but not too often and I did not find it particularly self-promoting or distracting. It is certainly far better than many of the charlatans that write books to promote the author's own websites, seminars and tapes.



    This book has substance and is enjoyable to listen to.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Shilon
    7/31/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Simple, Smart and Forward Thinking"

    Insightful and enjoyable read. A simple, smart, forward thinking business book. A must read for everyone.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Charlie
    6/5/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Good all round book"

    I got used to Josh Kauffmans slightly tinny recording after a while & didn't mind it. The book certainly covers the basics of business and introduces you to some good terms/ lingo. I'd recommend to anyone just starting out in business or interested to find out a bit about running one. Not so much for those who've been in business for a while- although there are some little bits of inspiration in there that might get your creative juices flowing!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Andrew Ebling
    1/15/15
    Overall
    "Very useful and full of great advice"

    Really enjoyed listening to The Personal MBA; loads of great ideas, advice & memorable illustrations.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Dan
    COBHAM, United Kingdom
    7/8/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "A real resource worth listening to"
    What did you like most about The Personal MBA: Master the Art of Business?

    I liked it's clear structure, which had impact and purpose. Lots of example stories and case studies also make this a book worth getting.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of The Personal MBA: Master the Art of Business?

    The ongoing analysis and criticism of top flight MBA business schools. The message is clear: if you've got a spare $100k+ to buy entry to an exclusive members club, then these top schools are for you - but don't be under any illusion that you'll learn anything different than any other of the good MBA schools out there. Save your money and learn about the topics explored in MBAs yourself - you'll save yourself a lot of money, which you could put towards your business venture.


    Which character – as performed by Josh Kaufman – was your favourite?

    N/A


    Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    It reaffirmed what I'd suspected - and potentially saved me a £££s of money in fees.


    Any additional comments?

    One of the few business books worth reading, given that it provides practical and common sense advice, but in a crystalised / useful form.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Graham
    Dublin 6W, Ireland
    4/13/13
    Overall
    "Very useful book"

    I really liked this book. The premis is that students of MBA courses all over the world are increasingly getting themselves into serious and sometimes life long debt when everything that they study on such courses is available elsewhere for free - or for a very small relative cost. Having made this point the author goes on to give high level overviews of the major subjects in business, and includes some useful observations on personal management and development. It is easy to listen to, very clearly and concisely written and I would recommend it to both business students and practitioners.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Khaled Al Marei
    London, United Kingdom
    10/17/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Simple still very resourceful!"
    What made the experience of listening to The Personal MBA: Master the Art of Business the most enjoyable?

    The book uses a simple way to present what business is about without getting into too much details.Very rich with inspiring examples and very well read.


    0 of 1 people found this review helpful

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