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Get Started in Your Own Business Right Now

In preparing this book, author Chris Guillbeau identified 1,500 individuals who built businesses earning $50,000 or more from a modest investment (in many cases, $100 or less), and from that group he’s chosen to focus on the 50 most intriguing case studies. In nearly all cases, people with no special skills discovered aspects of their personal passions that could be monetized, and were able to restructure their lives in ways that gave them greater freedom and fulfillment.

Here, finally, distilled into one easy-to-use guide, are the most valuable lessons from those who’ve learned how to turn what they do into a gateway to self-fulfillment. It’s all about finding the intersection between your “expertise” – even if you don’t consider it such - and what other people will pay for. You don’t need an MBA, a business plan or even employees. All you need is a product or service that springs from what you love to do anyway, people willing to pay, and a way to get paid.

Not content to talk in generalities, Chris tells you exactly how many dollars his group of unexpected entrepreneurs required to get their projects up and running; what these individuals did in the first weeks and months to generate significant cash; some of the key mistakes they made along the way, and the crucial insights that made the business stick. Among Chris’s key principles: if you’re good at one thing, you’re probably good at something else; never teach a man to fish – sell him the fish instead; and in the battle between planning and action, action wins.


Six Steps to Getting Started Right Now

As we know from stories in Chapter 1, you don't need a lot of money or special training to operate a business. You just need a product or service, a group of people who want to buy it, and a way to get paid. We'll look at each of these things in more detail throughout the book, but you don't have to wait to get started. Here are six steps you need to take:

1. Decide on your product or service.
2. Set up a website, even a very basic one (you can get a free one from WordPress.org).
3. Develop an offer (an offer is distinct from a product or service; see Chapter 7 for help).
4. Ensure you have a way to get paid (get a free PayPal account to start).
5. Announce your offer to the world (see Chapter 9 for more on this).
6. Learn from steps 1 through 5, then repeat.

Almost all microbusiness building follows this sequence of events. Of course, we'll be discussing specifics as we go along, but it's always better to start from where you are than wait for everything to be perfect.

If you have an existing business and are thinking about how to apply the concepts from this book, focus on either getting money in the bank or developing new products or services. These are the most important tasks of your business - not administration, maintenance, or anything else that takes time without creating wealth or value. If you're not sure what to do, think about any of these ideas:

o Can you contact your customer list with a special offer or incentive?
o Can you introduce a new product or service to complement your existing portfolio?
o If you're a coach or consultant, can you offer a special deal for clients who prepay?
o Is there a new way you can attract subscribers, clients, or customers?

But one way or another ... just do something. Friedrich Engels said: "An ounce of action is worth a ton of theory." Choose the ounce of action today.

Reader Susan Ivanicki of Seminole, Florida says, "This is a wonderful book about many different ideas from people who are successful in small business and how they got there. This is a small book, with many 'big ideas' about getting started with little or no resources. I enjoyed this book so much that I bought one for my friend who is retiring and might use some ideas here to earn a small income doing the things she already likes to do. The book is well written, easy to read and not too technical. Highly recommended for people slightly squeamish about venturing out on their own little business!" Click here for more information.

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