The bottom line: If you’re thinking about starting (or re-starting) a business, start here to ensure you get on the right track.
In short, The E Myth Revisited explains why most small businesses fail, and then illustrates an easy-to-follow roadmap for owners and leaders to get out of trouble and drive toward success.
The sobering fact is that an overwhelming majority of businesses fail in the first five years of operation, and these failures tend to follow a pattern. Gerber illustrates that successful businesses excel not by happenstance but by following a particular model that has proven to work—franchises, with overwhelmingly high success rates at five years, are given as a prime example. The E Myth Revisited explains, in often broad and sometimes specific terms, the approach that is required for a business to not only persevere, but to prosper.
The book is divided into three parts. Part I exposes many of the myths that delude people into starting their own business. Here the author clarifies the three different personalities in business: the “technician,” the “manager,” and the “entrepreneur.” Gerber explains that new ventures are often started by “technicians” who make the mistake of thinking that being able to do some type of work (e.g. hairstylist) equates to an understanding of how that business is done (beauty salon). Part II takes a broad approach to explain the “Turn-Key Revolution” and the general tenets one needs in order to lay the foundation for a successful business prototype. Part III comprises the bulk of the book and provides the most detail. It has step-by-step systematic guides to cultivate and nurture success.
I think this book’s greatest value is establishing a universal blueprint that any person from any type of business can follow in order to steer their team and organization toward new heights. With this advice are some very valuable life lessons and pearls of wisdom. On a negative note, as with any other book that secondarily serves as propaganda, there are frequent references and “plugs” to the author’s own website and business services. Moreover, the author often diverts and has a conversation with “Sarah,” a fictional failed business owner who is guided toward the light. These sections are lacking in substance and are so full of fluff that I wanted to send Sarah away on a permanent vacation.
As a non-businessperson, this book is extremely easy to read, and the fact that it has no technical language whatsoever makes it accessible and worthwhile to anyone who either wants to launch a new venture or reboot an old one. Despite the fact that it’s 260+ pages, The E Myth Revisited is also a surprisingly quick read.
I am sure there are many paths to success in business, but Gerber makes a persuasive case for his prescriptions in this book.
Dr. C. H. E. Sadaphal