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Book Review: The Facts of Business Life: What Every Successful Business Owner Knows that You Don’t by Bill McBean

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Many entrepreneurs start their businesses with a great idea and a lot of courage and enthusiasm. Some of those businesses make it and some fail. Those that fail often do so because of poor or no planning, lack of good leadership, lack of control or failure to market properly.

A new book, The Facts of Business Life: What Every Successful Business Owner Knows that You Don’t by Bill McBean details seven vital facts of starting, managing and maintaining a successful business. He integrates those facts with five levels of business success to illustrate how the facts affect every level of a business life cycle.

The seven facts of business life include:
• If you don’t lead, no one will follow.
• You have to control your business or you won’t own it.
• Protecting your company’s assets should be a first priority.
• Planning is about preparing for the future versus predicting it.
• If you don’t market your business, you won’t have one for very long.
• The marketplace should be thought of as a war zone.
• You have to know your business and know about business in general.

The five business levels the author offers include:

• Ownership and opportunity
• Creating a company’s DNA
• Going from survival to success
• Maintaining success
• Moving on when it is time to go

McBean, a successful business owner with four decades of experience, explains his theories on the seven facts with individual chapters representing each fact. He takes one step further by writing about how each business fact works on each of the five business levels.

He also offers relevant advice throughout the book such as “In regard to product, process, and people, it’s important to remember that customers come to you in the first place because of the product or service you provide. However, they come back to you because of the processes that deliver what they want and when they want it, and because of their relationship with the people who deliver it.”

McBean also references theories from other authors including that everything is created twice, first in as a mental concept then as a physical concept, which was actually written by Steven Covey in one his highly popular books. McBean projects that everything within the business life cycle is also created twice, a mental creation with thinking and preparing and the physical creation of taking action.

The Facts of Business Life provides great detail and insights into each of the seven facts with emphasis on leadership and control. A few mentionable items the author provides for readers includes the idea of creating a company’s DNA.

McBean writes, “Creating a company’s DNA is essentially about determining and mapping out how the business will operate on a day-to-day, week-to-week, and month-to-month basis. This is done by establishing procedures and processes that will enable you to realize the results you forecasted.”

He also stresses the need to understand the accounting and finance sides of a business as well as the need to marketing and feel comfortable and informed about the marketing process. All-in-all, the book covers a wide range of business topics that are central to success.

It is a myth that just building something makes people and customers show up at the door ready and willing to buy from you. Creating and building a successful business requires planning, planning and so much more planning starting with the conception phase to the succession phase. The Facts of Business Life covers all of that and much more.

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