It’s time for another 30-day business advice book.
Bill Curtis and Bryan Pace promise to help any willing entrepreneur go from a business newbie to a thriving business owner in under 30 days. Try 27 days.
In their book, aptly titled “How to Start a Business in 27 Days: A Step-by-Step Guide That Anyone Can Use to Achieve Business Ownership,” Curtis and Pace guide readers through an array of steps to plan and execute a business startup. They cover quite a range of topics from finance to marketing to legal issues and taxation, with a little inspiration to boot.
If you subscribe to the philosophy that a business should be started quickly, “How to Start a Business in 27 Days” might be a book to consider. This book is designed to be used by those who want to start immediately with minimal investment and with a focus on specific steps and recommendations, some of which are particularly helpful to solopreneurs and small businesses.
The book starts off at a running pace, with more than five steps listed for the reader on the “first day”. These steps aren’t lightweight either. “How to Start a Business in 27 Days” advises readers to identify their company mission, mantra, and testing strategies and then walks readers through these steps. This process of steps continues to “Day 27”, when the business is ready to launch.
In deciding whether this book is right for you, prospective readers should focus on two questions:
- What makes this book different from the others?
- Is the book realistic and if so, how can I implement it NOW?
The Best Advice Is in the Details
In comparing this book to others of its type, “How to Start a Business in 27 Days” has a similar overall approach. It basically includes a list of steps that should move a reader toward better and better business success.
The difference is in the details. “How to Start a Business in 27 Days” focuses on issues that aren’t covered in similar books. Some of these issues include scalability, finance (including credit) and exit strategies. These and other issues offers the kinds of details rarely touched on by other quick business startup books. But they are the very things tha will be critical to the entepreneur’s success in the long run.
Another thing that sets “How to Start a Business in 27 Days” apart is the specificity in recommendations. Are you the type of entrepreneur who wants to know up-front the answer to questions like:
- How many social media accounts should I set up?
- How much money should I have to finance my business?
- What should I do about the competition?
If so, this book will provide specific answers to those questions as well as targeted advice to help prepare for other issues.
Another important aspect of the book is the type of business startup it addresses. Many currently available books on the subject focus largely on the Internet. While books covering online business startup are clearly needed they leave out many other businesses categories of potential interest to entrepreneurs.
Not every business wants to (or is able to) operate completely online. So “How to Start a Business in 27 Days” offers strategies for both online and offline business startup. The key is the strategy, not the particular type of business being launched. In fact, Internet strategies, while certainly touched upon, are not mentioned in detail until the latter half of the book.
Fantasy and Reality
That being said, the real problem with the book seems to be with its central claim. As many small business owners can probably attest, it can take much more than 27 days to start (or even to be ready to start) a business. While Curtis and Pace make a good attempt, the steps seem rushed to say the least.
The book moves quickly through steps that can take months to fully implement (testing, market research, website design). As mentioned above, there are a lot of steps suggested for the first day. And while these steps may be familiar to a seasoned entrepreneur, they may totally overwhelm the business newbie — the very reader the book should be trying to reach.
Another issue is the limited examples. For those readers who are able to keep up, there are only a few specific sample startups discussed. And the authors don’t follow any of these through for the entire 27 day startup process. This is a much needed detail since it would help readers see how the steps in the book are applied to specific types of businesses.
Quick Read for Small Biz People That Need More Details
Overall, though, the book has merit for two particular audiences:
- Future small business owners/solopreneurs who want a quick read on the various small details that are critical to small business
- Small business owners/solopreneurs who want to review the steps after launching a small business
These two groups would best benefit from the book’s focus on specific details and questions that they may have overlooked in planning and strategy.
About the Authors
Bill Curtis and Bryan Pace are consultants, entrepreneurs, and owners of a consulting company, OmniThrive. They can be found at their website or on Twitter at @BillCurtis and @BryanLPace. “How to Start a Business in 27 Days” is available on Amazon. This article is based on an electronic copy of the book provided for reviewing purposes.