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Entrepreneurship: A Practical Guide offers expert insights, case studies and advice to begin your entrepreneurial journey. Rather than being another book that tells you what you are meant to do, this guide covers what successful entrepreneurs actually do in the current day and age. With key points covered in each chapter, Entrepreneurship: A Practical Guide shows you simple but effective strategies that are working for entrepreneurs right now, and will help you to apply them yourself.

To help you to achieve your own ambitions, Entrepreneurship: A Practical Guide is packed with case studies of real people running a wide range of successful ventures, from a music production studio to a bakery to a cricket bat factory. By following each entrepreneur’s story throughout the book, you’ll soon notice a number of common themes that can show you how to achieve business success. Furthermore, if you know that you want to become an entrepreneur, but are at a loss for precisely what to do, you’ll find lots of ideas to help get you started. We describe exactly how these ventures got started and how they grew, giving you a blueprint for success.

This entrepreneurship book will help those who want to turn their passions into a thriving venture to:

Entrepreneur BookFIND A NICHE - where you can beat the competition

Entrepreneur BookCREATE THE RIGHT BRAND - to stand out from the crowd

Entrepreneur BookACHIEVE WORK-LIFE BALANCE - and build the job of your dreams

Entrepreneur BookGROW YOUR BUSINESS - and capitalise on your success

Entrepreneurship: A Practical Guide is available to be purchased from all good bookstores. Links to the entrepreneurship book on Amazon.com and Amazon.co.uk are conveniently provided on the left hand side so that you may place your order.

Introduction to this entrepreneurship book

17 March, 2008 was a life-changing day for us. We were on holiday in Australia, sitting on Bondi Beach, away from the all-absorbing treadmill of our day-to-day schedule working in the financial service industry. This enabled us to take a step back and ask ourselves fundamental questions such as, ‘How do we want to spend our waking hours?’ and ‘If we could do anything in life what would it be?’

On Bondi Beach, our dream to start our own business venture was born – working with organizations and individuals to help them to achieve their goals, through the application of psychology, motivational techniques and consultancy advice. You may have had a similar moment in time when you first ‘caught the bug’. We can tell you from experience that it’s a great bug to catch.

That day, we had no idea how things would turn out and we had big doubts, as taking a step into the unknown and working for yourself can be a very daunting prospect. Like any business, we certainly still have room to improve and grow, and we continually put effort into this. However, if while sitting on that beach we could have known all of the amazing things that we would achieve in our first five years – not least writing our fourth book, which you are currently reading about – we’d have been absolutely stunned.

If you are at the start of your journey as an entrepreneur you probably have some of the same anxieties we did, but you should also feel very excited by the possibilities that lie ahead. Be inspired by the words of the famous inventor, Thomas Edison:

If we did all the things we are capable of doing, we would literally astound ourselves.

The purpose of this book is to catalyze YOU to astound YOURSELF.

Our take on entrepreneurship

A traditional definition of the word ‘entrepreneur’ might go something like this:

Entrepreneur: A person who sets up a business or businesses, taking on financial risks in the hope of profit

- Oxford English Dictionary

However, we see this as a somewhat outdated view. Let us explain why.

Firstly, although many entrepreneurs are aiming to make money, others have a different primary focus – for example, they are dedicated to tackling a worthy cause that is dear to them. Admittedly, someone like the late Anita Roddick, the founder of the successful retail chain The Body Shop, had to earn money to pay the bills. However, through her work she also challenged the cosmetics industry to reduce cruelty to animals through inhumane testing. Being an entrepreneur isn’t always solely about making a profit, and therefore the principles within this book apply more broadly (although you’ll find plenty of tips on how to make money contained in the book’s 25 chapters!).

Secondly, we subscribe Richard Branson’s famous quote that entrepreneurship is about turning what excites you in life into capital, so that you can do more of it and move forward with it. We’ve met many people who have successfully turned a long-standing hobby into their livelihood and have lost count of the number of times we’ve heard the phrase, ‘Work doesn’t feel like work.’ The case studies in this book are proof that it is possible to make a good amount of money while doing the things that you love.

Finally, traditional definitions of entrepreneurship often emphasize the element of risk-taking. Clearly, some case studies we feature in this book do fit with this school of thought. However, while researching entrepreneurship, particularly among the current generation of entrepreneurs, we’ve commonly found a very different and far less risky approach to starting a new venture. Advances in technology and communication have made it easier to start a venture from the comfort of your armchair with little more than a laptop, Internet connection, some spare time and a bucketload of enthusiasm.

Therefore among modern entrepreneurs we’ve found a very common pattern – aspiring entrepreneurs frequently have an idea for a new venture and begin to trade without a formal business plan or a bank loan. Their emphasis is on testing the market with very little risk and minimal financial investment. Using this strategy, they hone their niche, research their target market, and critically, this period of ‘dabbling’ confirms the decision about whether to go ahead or not. The philosophy is very much along the lines of, ‘little to lose, everything to gain.’

Obviously there will always be some risk involved when starting a new venture (particularly if you are relying on it to pay the bills), and you need to be sensible when embarking on this type of journey. However, many people take the view that the job market is so unstable these days that working for yourself can actually be a safer bet. At least entrepreneurs are in control of their own destiny, have the power to make decisions to change the course of their venture and know the truth about how it is performing.

Throughout Introducing Entrepreneurship: A Practical Guide, we focus on this alternative, lower risk approach to starting a business or social enterprise. You’ll find it particularly helpful if you are looking to start your own venture, large or small. If that is the position you are in then you are the person that we’ve had in mind as we’ve written this book and we hope that it gives you a short-cut to success.

A blueprint to your success

An important thing to note is that this is a practical guide to entrepreneurship. There are many other books and courses out there that teach you academic and theoretical approaches to starting a business, and you may wish to complement the knowledge gained through this book with information from such sources. However, this guide is deliberately designed so that you can throw the traditional textbook out of the window. Rather than being another book that tells you what you are meant to do, this guide covers what successful entrepreneurs actually do in the current day and age. With key points covered in each chapter, we’ll show you simple but effective strategies that are working for entrepreneurs right now, and will help you to apply them yourself.

To help you to achieve your own ambitions, this book is packed with case studies of real people running a wide range of successful ventures, from a music production studio to a bakery to a cricket bat factory. We describe exactly how these ventures got started and how they grew, giving you a blueprint for success.

Some ventures featured as case studies are relatively new and consist of sole traders; some are well established and employ teams of people; others have successfully been sold on for significant sums of money. This variety is designed to ensure that there is a relevant case study to inspire you, whatever your venture, although many of the lessons are applicable across a range of different businesses. By following each entrepreneur’s story throughout the book, you’ll soon notice a number of common themes that can show you how to achieve success. Furthermore, if you know that you want to become an entrepreneur, but are at a loss for precisely what to do, you’ll find lots of ideas to help get you started.

We wish you the very best on your entrepreneurship adventure. It will be challenging, but it will also be a hugely rewarding experience. Revisit this book along your journey and re-learn the lessons that our group of entrepreneurs has shared with you. Most of all, do share with us your own success stories, as we would love to hear them.

We hope you enjoy reading our book and we wish you the very best for your entrepreneurship journey.

Your success stories

Nothing gives us greater pleasure than hearing how readers of the entrepreneurship book are benefiting and creating successful businesses. We invite you to submit your success stories, whether large or small, so that we can hear how our readers are improving their entrepreneurial skills. You can reach us through the Contact The Authors page.

Free bonus entrepreneurship book material

There is so much we wanted to share in the entrepreneurship book but there are always limitations on how big a book can be. Because we want to make sure we continually share with you the most valuable nuggets of information for your entrepreneurial success there is an email sign-up box on the right-hand side. By providing your email we will email you any other updates we have to the entrepreneurship book. So sign-up now and make sure you don’t miss out!

The authors

Alison Price is a Chartered Psychologist and Occupational Psychologist in London who has worked with over 1,500 individuals, inspiring them to make more out of their lives and their careers. She was a semi-finalist in ‘Britain’s Next Top Coach’. Alison works with employees and leaders of prestigious organizations, supporting the achievement of peak performance at work and is a specialist in leadership and management development. She also lectures on a master’s-level course in Business Psychology at a London university. Alison combines her experience as a motivational speaker, facilitator and Peak Performance Coach with her expertise as a psychologist, to create powerful and lasting results. Alison is also a TV psychologist, provides media commentary on motivation and success, and advice to media and TV production companies on the application of psychology within their programmes.

Alison is qualified in a range of psychometric assessments, including Hogan MVPIHogan Development SurveyHogan Personality Inventory16PF and Myers-Briggs Type Indicator, to help individuals make breakthroughs in their development. Alison is also authorised by the British Psychological Society (BPS) to offer an Test User Occupational and Ability training course for people who want to qualify in delivering psychometrics.

David Price has spent over 10 years studying personal effectiveness, models of personal achievement and success. David combines qualifications in Life Coaching, Sports Psychology, Positive Psychology, Peak Performance Coaching and as an NLP Practitioner for integrated effectiveness solutions. David has applied this knowledge in the commercial industry by mentoring and coaching employees within some of the leading financial services firms. He provides advice to entrepreneurs and those wanting to start a business, and has headed a social enterprise that raised funds for charity.