Looking to build a thriving business without spending hours writing a business plan first? If so, Start Me Up!: The No-Business-Plan Business Planis the book for you. Eka shares four major pitfalls that ultimately lead to the failure of many new businesses and show you how to avoid them. While this book teaches you the fundamentals of getting your structure, strategy, system and sales right, it is NOT going to show you how approach angel investors or banks for money. A few of the sub-chapters on financing your company give that away, “Banks Loans Are a Waste of Time” and “Venture Capital and Angel Investors (Another Waste of Time).”
The book had my attention from the first line of the preface, “Business plans are bullshit, and yours probably is, too!” In business school, we were taught that the plan was important as it lays the foundation for how you’re going to run your operation. Eka, on the other hand, believes that 1) no one will read it, 2) they are works of fiction, and 3) banks aren’t lending to small businesses with no track record, so your plan won’t make you money.
Instead, Eka spends the first part of the book debunking some of the myths people have when starting small businesses, such as, “I don’t have the time.” It may not be that you don’t have time. Instead, you are not making the most productive use of your time. To further help entrepreneurs debunk this myth, he provides a chapter on how outsourcing tasks like research and email campaign creation to virtual assistants and interns can free up your time for money generating activities. He pulls in his own life experiences and those of such experts as Yanik Silver, Gary Vaynerchuk and Nellie Akalp.
Eka is a strong advocate of new business owners picking a niche and serving it well. As a marketer, I am glad he took that approach because being a “jack of all trades” usually leads to a small bank account, less than ideal clients on your roster and an entrepreneur ready to give up.
The final section of the book gives you step-by-step instructions on using the technology that will grow your business. This includes how to set up accounts with Wix and Weebly to create your own website and a guide on setting up pages and ads on the popular social media platforms: Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Google+. Check the chapters near the back of the book for a list of social media tools and Eka’s start-up checklist.
If you are looking to launch a new business or improve upon one you’re already running, pick up Start Me Up!: The No-Business-Plan Business Plan.