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Go It Alone!: The Secret to Building a Successful Business on Your Own

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There is an epidemic of unhappiness in the American workplace. A full 70 percent of workers in the United States report that they are disengaged from their jobs. When asked, "Do you have the opportunity to do what you do best every day?" only 20 percent of nearly 2 million employees said yes. It is no wonder that 56 percent of all Americans dream of starting their own busi There is an epidemic of unhappiness in the American workplace. A full 70 percent of workers in the United States report that they are disengaged from their jobs. When asked, "Do you have the opportunity to do what you do best every day?" only 20 percent of nearly 2 million employees said yes. It is no wonder that 56 percent of all Americans dream of starting their own business. So why don't they do so? Because starting one's own business is seen as difficult, expensive, and risky. In this extraordinary book, successful Go It Alone! entrepreneur Bruce Judson explains that the conventional wisdom about starting your own business is stunningly wrong. Using the leverage of technology -- e-mail, the World Wide Web, and the remarkable array of off-the-shelf business services now available -- it is dramatically easier to start your own business. Magnified by these new services, it is also possible to create, for the first time, a highly focused business. Bruce Judson shows you the practical steps that will allow nearly any individual to create a business, often using job skills that seem to require an entire corporation for support. It is no longer necessary to spend time on the tasks that don't add value. It is now possible to stay small but reap big profits. Go-it-alone businesses allow the individual the freedom to concentrate on their greatest skills. After reading this book, your motto will be "Do What You Do Best, Let Others Do the Rest."


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There is an epidemic of unhappiness in the American workplace. A full 70 percent of workers in the United States report that they are disengaged from their jobs. When asked, "Do you have the opportunity to do what you do best every day?" only 20 percent of nearly 2 million employees said yes. It is no wonder that 56 percent of all Americans dream of starting their own busi There is an epidemic of unhappiness in the American workplace. A full 70 percent of workers in the United States report that they are disengaged from their jobs. When asked, "Do you have the opportunity to do what you do best every day?" only 20 percent of nearly 2 million employees said yes. It is no wonder that 56 percent of all Americans dream of starting their own business. So why don't they do so? Because starting one's own business is seen as difficult, expensive, and risky. In this extraordinary book, successful Go It Alone! entrepreneur Bruce Judson explains that the conventional wisdom about starting your own business is stunningly wrong. Using the leverage of technology -- e-mail, the World Wide Web, and the remarkable array of off-the-shelf business services now available -- it is dramatically easier to start your own business. Magnified by these new services, it is also possible to create, for the first time, a highly focused business. Bruce Judson shows you the practical steps that will allow nearly any individual to create a business, often using job skills that seem to require an entire corporation for support. It is no longer necessary to spend time on the tasks that don't add value. It is now possible to stay small but reap big profits. Go-it-alone businesses allow the individual the freedom to concentrate on their greatest skills. After reading this book, your motto will be "Do What You Do Best, Let Others Do the Rest."

30 review for Go It Alone!: The Secret to Building a Successful Business on Your Own

  1. 4 out of 5

    Chris

    Bruce Judson explains how an individual can create his own business without the need of anyone else, except for lawyers and accountants, to create and run a personal business. His method of execution is all about outsourcing your business needs to either other businesses that specialize in the service or software programs. These are software programs that are called, ASP (Application Service Providers) and their job is to perform all the needed work that a group of people would do. The structure Bruce Judson explains how an individual can create his own business without the need of anyone else, except for lawyers and accountants, to create and run a personal business. His method of execution is all about outsourcing your business needs to either other businesses that specialize in the service or software programs. These are software programs that are called, ASP (Application Service Providers) and their job is to perform all the needed work that a group of people would do. The structure of this book is part motivation and part repetition. The first 3/4 of the book is all about the benefits of ASPs and how they make life easier to run a business by yourself. I did try out some of the sites that he currently has up and running and I will say, because he has outsourced so much of the work, most of his sites look like they were done by a program, you can see spelling errors (of all things) and incorrect formatting and lots of ads. One service I used was www.T1anywhere.com. This site specializes in finding cheap high speed internet service in your area. The results were appalling. Instead of returning instant results, you had to wait 24 hours for the results to come back but it wasn't a list of providers you could pick from with their numbers and it lets you decide who to contact, instead you basically gave out your information to lots of companies who would call you all day long trying to sell you service with no clue where your information actually went. The use of ASP is a good idea overall but as he did mention, it is also a good idea to have someone build one just for your business if you can afford it, otherwise there are listing of ASPs you can pick from and use. For the most part, the rest of the book is made up of small chapters, after the long ones, usually five pages at most of things to consider, such as venture capital funding, when to quit your job and how to evaluate your business plan, etc. Most people think this book is only for technology or website start-ups and its not. You could run a brick and mortar business with just you and one staff member and leave the rest to programs to handle appointments and inventory and supply-chain work, etc. You just have to be creative and smart enough to know how to implement them into your business plan. This book will give you some great ideas and other books to read that will help you get started. The one thing it lacks is the detail of where to go to get your business registered and set up and the usually fee associated to them. After that the book goes on to motivate you not to give up and learn how to face your fears. I did get some good ideas and glad I was able to read it.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Mihai Cosareanu

    I read this book due to the recommendation from Personal MBA. After reading this book I don't think that I learned anything new compared to my previously read books. It motivates you a bit to start your own thing, however, I feel that the times have changed a bit. I think Rework (https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/6...) is more actual than this. I read this book due to the recommendation from Personal MBA. After reading this book I don't think that I learned anything new compared to my previously read books. It motivates you a bit to start your own thing, however, I feel that the times have changed a bit. I think Rework (https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/6...) is more actual than this.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Giang Truong

    Go-it-alone * TEST whatever you learn by MAKING A SIDE PROJECT * “There was only one thing to do: test my growing convictions by launching business on my own”. * This is a game-changer mindset. I can improve my work and personal aspects constantly while broadening my mind. * Side project can either be a business, a church calling, or a personal goal. * Be MORE VALUABLE by INCREASING MEANINGFUL TIME (reading books, study English, play guitar,...) * Relates to 80/20 rule of Richard Koch * While do Go-it-alone * TEST whatever you learn by MAKING A SIDE PROJECT * “There was only one thing to do: test my growing convictions by launching business on my own”. * This is a game-changer mindset. I can improve my work and personal aspects constantly while broadening my mind. * Side project can either be a business, a church calling, or a personal goal. * Be MORE VALUABLE by INCREASING MEANINGFUL TIME (reading books, study English, play guitar,...) * Relates to 80/20 rule of Richard Koch * While doing the RIGHT thing, I am also lessening my biggest responsibilities. Therefore I find more time to execute other things in general. * Create your own REAPEATABLE FORMULA for your work, study, project, lifestyle. * it sounds like creating a habit to me. But to look at it from a broader point of view, it makes sense to integrate good “habits” into your professional work as well. * If you want to be revolutionary, makes it small and easy for people to change. * “Successful entrepreneurs focus on starting businesses that don’t require dramatic shifts in the behavior of customers, suppliers, or service providers”. * I want people to adopt truly effective ways of learning English. However I myself did not learn all of these at once, neither should I make people do it. * Fire before you Aim * If I am willing take action before I fully understand the situation, I probably won’t make a perfect home-run, but I’ll have taken the first step in the journey. * I personally feel related, I once felt overwhelmed by studying and was so sure I would not be able to muster the energy needed. But I aimed and performed my first 25mins study session. And now I am grateful I was courageous. * Be focused and Decide what you would do, and more importantly, would not do each day. * I believe there’s no one lazy or lack of energy to do meaningful work. Indeed, it’s part of our nature to conquer great quests for we have been ordained by God Himself to come to this world. * The true explain is there are so much temptations and distractions in this world. And sadly, most people do not put on their guards to stay away from this destructing plan of Satan. We need to be precautious. * Ways to capture ideas * Make a note everytime you are confronted with a problem. If you solve one of these probs for yourself, you may have invented a new career. * See if the same model can be applied in a different way * Look for functions that are taken as part of a bundled activity. Specialize it in a cheaper and faster way. * Read trade press * “The real tragedy in life is not that each of us doesn’t have enough strengths, it’s that we fail to use the ones we have”. * So I do have my own core competence, just need to find out and utilize it. * We need to have enough experience with one function before you can outsource it. * If I don’t know about it, I can’t tell if the ASPs are doing it right. * It’s better to be LARGE FISH IN A SMALL POND a small fish in a large ocean. * Sounds compelling enough :))) * If you have something distinctive that will attract a segment, you’re telling them I am made out for you. * Constantly validate your assumptions * Being an entrepreneur means you are faced with some constant risks. Especially when you have success but do not know where it comes from. * “When you are doing what you should be doing, you know it, and your body knows it” * The resulting feeling of individual power, of control over your life, and the associated release of extraordinary energy that accompany these activities. * I feel so identified with this notion. I was staying away from studying and self-learning for nearly 2 years and not a second during that time did I feel enough. I knew I was missing out something important. Only after I started to make some habits of learning did life began to be right. * The busy person who expects to succeed taps into a self-reinforcing, virtuous circle: each day, as the reality of success unfolds, the individual’s daily activities build ever greater confidence and dispel fear. * When you’re busy, you don’t have much time for doubt. More importantly, you are making yourself stronger each day against fear.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Sophie

    Loved it. Quick read and full of goodness on every page.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Nicholas

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Good. Actionable. easy read. thought provoking. The model is a focused, leveraged (in the good way) business that sells your one skill or product perfectly. Also, these businesses are invisible. No big PR. No magazine covers. Not high technology. Word of mouth perfection. Quite, smiling, needing nothing from you. Dovetails with Army of Davids. The Four-Hour-Workweek without Tim's awesome marketing. This is the goal. Makes some good comments on the biases of what we see in other businesses. Shows the p Good. Actionable. easy read. thought provoking. The model is a focused, leveraged (in the good way) business that sells your one skill or product perfectly. Also, these businesses are invisible. No big PR. No magazine covers. Not high technology. Word of mouth perfection. Quite, smiling, needing nothing from you. Dovetails with Army of Davids. The Four-Hour-Workweek without Tim's awesome marketing. This is the goal. Makes some good comments on the biases of what we see in other businesses. Shows the power of forgoing what other people want and assume you want too. Quotes: "The business is started with a minimal investment, and the founder or founders retain full ownership and control of the enterprise. The business is run entirely by a small number of people, generally one to six. The founder does not set out to create a small business. He or she is working from the premise that the business has unlimited revenue potential." "Achieving leverage and the amplification of your skill is the keystone to becoming a successful go-it-alone entrepreneur." "In the past few weeks, when have you said to yourself, 'I wish that there was a _____ so that I would not have to _____,' and how did you solve this problem. The answer if often the basis for a strong go-it-alone business idea." "A business prospers through a continuing loop of effort, assessment of results, and modifications based on learning." "Successful go-it-alone entrepreneurs have figured out how to test and launch new products and services quickly and at minimal cost." "Go-it-alone entrepreneurs understand the cumulative value of singles and doubles. The mythology of innovation tends to focus on a single grand slam that dramatically invents or reinvents a business. The reality is that success is more typically the result of cumulative, almost prosaic hard work, where the entrepreneur is constantly asking himself or herself, "Now how can I make this better?" or "What can I do to reduce there costs, even if it's only by a small amount?" Over time, this dedication to ongoing improvements builds up: The cumulative effect of many single and doubles is often a home run - a total business system." "Go-it-alone business owners orient their product development around what they learn form customers." "Capitalize on your strengths, whatever they may be, and manage around your weaknesses, whatever they may be." "So long as everything else functioned, it was not worth the time or money to make it perfect...That's not quite right, so I will handle it by hand. This impulse must be squelched at all costs." "Because they had no plans to take their businesses public, they were not interested in generating publicity to support the value of their stock offerings. From their perspective, the benefits of publicity were outweighed by the potential that it would lead to new competition." "By establishing multiple sites under different names, Joe created the appearance that the trademark search business was already crowded and competitive." "One of the advantages of being a private company is that we can be private. There are absolute advantages to operating beneath the radar screen, and to keeping our competitors as far from knowledge of our operations as possible." "Yes, starting a new business involves a certain amount of risk. But so does working for someone else. And the risks associated with being captain of your own fate may be far more manageable and far more acceptable than the risks associated with corporate layoffs and downturns, which are far more likely to be out of your control...Many employees are finding that they are already living with considerable, often unrecognized risk. It may be that earning your livelihood by becoming captain of your own well-tested ship is less of a risk." "A successful enterprise is more than a job. It is an asset that can, if the founder chooses be sold." "Get moving. Minimize risk. Don't be afraid of failure. Using extreme outsourcing to get the business of the ground without large investments...The most important thing you can do is begin pushing your idea forward with real customers so that you can start the process of learning and building." "You gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face....You must do the thing which you think you cannot do." [Eleanor Roosevelt:]

  6. 5 out of 5

    Halit

    A bit of outdated examples and a lot of wise insights into solo entrepreneurship. I like it, and I am going alone

  7. 4 out of 5

    Khalid Hajeri

    Nice starting point for readers wanting to begin creating a business! Bruce Judson offers encouragement to such readers by letting them know that in today's world, with the wide accessibility to technology, it is definitely possible to start a business on your own, or at least with a very minimal number of partners. He stresses the advantage of using modern software to assist in the process of the business. Even something as simple as email can be used, all it takes is a little creative thinking Nice starting point for readers wanting to begin creating a business! Bruce Judson offers encouragement to such readers by letting them know that in today's world, with the wide accessibility to technology, it is definitely possible to start a business on your own, or at least with a very minimal number of partners. He stresses the advantage of using modern software to assist in the process of the business. Even something as simple as email can be used, all it takes is a little creative thinking on the part of the reader. He lays out several good examples of individuals whom had started companies on their own that helped them earn money in methods they preferred better than when they were employees. Mr. Judson even describes examples from his own experience to back up his points. The book mainly explains how to start businesses on your own using software, however some non-software examples are also mentioned. Service-oriented businesses tend to be the next best alternative should the reader decide so. However, the author makes clear that you will be using software to sustain your business creation one way or another, especially in this modern age where business goes hand in hand with digital technology. With that said, I really enjoyed reading "Go It Alone!". It is one of the few works that outright shows it is possible to start a business on your own, not necessarily with too many people working with you. Since the publication of the book, many amazing ways to make money by yourself have emerged through social media (Youtube, Instagram, etc.), which further proves that the author is right about his argument. Recommended reading!

  8. 4 out of 5

    Lanre Dahunsi

    "You are more likely to succeed if you superbly execute a superbly mediocre idea than if you execute a superb idea in a mediocre way." Go It Alone Entrepreneur:He is filled with enthusiasm and knows that he needs to keep reinventing the business. The bias for a go it alone entrepreneur must be that all possible activities are automated or otherwise outsourced unless there is absolutely no other choice, which makes it a core activity. If you eventually decide to perform a specific function, you shou "You are more likely to succeed if you superbly execute a superbly mediocre idea than if you execute a superb idea in a mediocre way." Go It Alone Entrepreneur:He is filled with enthusiasm and knows that he needs to keep reinventing the business. The bias for a go it alone entrepreneur must be that all possible activities are automated or otherwise outsourced unless there is absolutely no other choice, which makes it a core activity. If you eventually decide to perform a specific function, you should be asking your self four additional questions: 1. Have I exhausted every possible source for outsourcing this activity and found that no alternative exist? 2. Is the activity itself crucial? TO what extent will it hurt my sales if the business does not include this function at all? 3. Though it may not be possible to outsource this activity today, Is it possible to imagine that as the business activity grows this activity might be quickly outsourced? Tips on building a Go it alone Enterprise: Build a business that offers real value to meet the needs of the target market and other specific customer groups. Be in a position to quickly solidify and capitalize on any interest you see from potential customers who are part of a target market that is different from the one you initially expected to attract. For a new business, luck is what happens when good preparation connect with opportunity.

  9. 4 out of 5

    David Brown

    Go It Alone is a book that offers ideas for those who would like to capitalize on their own individual abilities without the need for developing an organization. Bruce Judson offers advice for creating your own business with very little capital and no permanent employees. I was drawn to this book because I believe in the power of individuals. The author promotes the idea that with the latest technology and available service applications it is possible for an individual to operate in some ways lik Go It Alone is a book that offers ideas for those who would like to capitalize on their own individual abilities without the need for developing an organization. Bruce Judson offers advice for creating your own business with very little capital and no permanent employees. I was drawn to this book because I believe in the power of individuals. The author promotes the idea that with the latest technology and available service applications it is possible for an individual to operate in some ways like a company. He espouses three concepts: personal leverage, extreme outsourcing, and relentless repeatability. The author explains that, with this business model, the individual should do what he does best and outsource the rest. He also espouses that, first identifying salient processes that are profitable and useful, the individual should repeat these to perfection. This business model would then allow the individual to focus on his strengths, hone his skills and establish his own business system. This philosophy is not the ultimate answer for individuals wanting their own business, but the book does offer a good starting point. I see this as just one of many books for me to read to develop my own business chops. But I have to say that I am impressed with the author's faith in the power of the individual. On this, we agree wholeheartedly

  10. 4 out of 5

    Matthew Bradley

    This book was not for me. It's not a bad book, but this book is for those who want to sell rocks, not mountains. It is also very, very basic while at the same time being far too verbose. It lacks a large degree of original thought and in places becomes a menagerie of quotes and shallow anecdotes. This is the slightly diluted pancake syrup of business books: not entirely unpalatable, but you'd be more satisfied if you ate maple syrup with your Belgian waffles instead. This book was not for me. It's not a bad book, but this book is for those who want to sell rocks, not mountains. It is also very, very basic while at the same time being far too verbose. It lacks a large degree of original thought and in places becomes a menagerie of quotes and shallow anecdotes. This is the slightly diluted pancake syrup of business books: not entirely unpalatable, but you'd be more satisfied if you ate maple syrup with your Belgian waffles instead.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Yasheve

    Although I took one good piece of information from this book that will be useful, it wasn't something that I hadn't already read or learned. This book simply re-triggered that message. I agree with Michael: "It's not a bad book, but this book is for those who want to sell rocks, not mountains. It is also very, very basic while at the same time being far too verbose. It lacks a large degree of original thought and in places becomes a menagerie of quotes and shallow anecdotes." Although I took one good piece of information from this book that will be useful, it wasn't something that I hadn't already read or learned. This book simply re-triggered that message. I agree with Michael: "It's not a bad book, but this book is for those who want to sell rocks, not mountains. It is also very, very basic while at the same time being far too verbose. It lacks a large degree of original thought and in places becomes a menagerie of quotes and shallow anecdotes."

  12. 4 out of 5

    Sam

    This book was written by a professor at the Yale School of Management. He has been a successful entrepreneur as well. I really like the principles he discusses in this book. The title pretty well summarizes what he talks about throughout. He stresses the importance of finding what you are good at and focusing on that. In other words, outsource all the rest. He argues that you should strive to succeed in business by maintaining a lean infrastructure.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Laura

    Extremely helpful book about building your own business in the internet age. He says outsource everything and focus on your core skills. With the advent of the internet, you do not need to be your own back office. There are accounting, legal, marketing, and other services online to which you can outsource these responsbilities - and they are cheap or even free!

  14. 5 out of 5

    Tim Brown

    Great book with a realistic view on start-ups. The author has a large emphasis on outsourcing as many aspects of the business as you can and focusing your attention on your unique talents and strengths

  15. 4 out of 5

    Chidi

    Gives a quick and dirty overview of building a sustainable thriving one man business that is flexible and scaleable; and that leverages your skills as an entrepreneur while the rest is done by specialists and experts

  16. 4 out of 5

    Allison

    This book had some helpful ideas I wasn't familiar with (the 60% rule, for example). I do agree with the reviewers who found it repetitive. The concept of using ASPs or outside contractors that are basically "good enough" was interesting. This book had some helpful ideas I wasn't familiar with (the 60% rule, for example). I do agree with the reviewers who found it repetitive. The concept of using ASPs or outside contractors that are basically "good enough" was interesting.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Martha

    Basic principles of concentrating on what you do best.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Tiago

    Great book. ASP focus and outsourcing principles really stand out, as well as the idea that you don't need tons of employees to be a success. Great book. ASP focus and outsourcing principles really stand out, as well as the idea that you don't need tons of employees to be a success.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Julian Munds

    I go 70 pages in and felt past the point of "Do extreme outsourcing" Knudson has little to offer. It's a go nowhere book. I go 70 pages in and felt past the point of "Do extreme outsourcing" Knudson has little to offer. It's a go nowhere book.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Vasu

    This is very good book for "go-it-alone" entrepreneur with less capital and complete out-sourcing model for individual person. Myth of "Venture capital" has been explained clearly. This is very good book for "go-it-alone" entrepreneur with less capital and complete out-sourcing model for individual person. Myth of "Venture capital" has been explained clearly.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Umar Ghumman

    The books offers some interesting insight but is focused on tech start ups. I would recommend it to someone starting his own website or e-business

  22. 5 out of 5

    Will Harvey

    This guy has a lot of practical advice. I seem to get something out of the book every time I pick it up. The author has started several business and is a business school prof as well.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Mills College Library

    658.1141 J931 2005

  24. 4 out of 5

    Benjamin

    Fair. Halfway through, there are a few interesting bits, but there is lots of confirmation bias from Judson's own life and fanaticism about classic stories. Fair. Halfway through, there are a few interesting bits, but there is lots of confirmation bias from Judson's own life and fanaticism about classic stories.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Maria Perbina

  26. 5 out of 5

    ChaleMa

  27. 5 out of 5

    Kubra

  28. 4 out of 5

    Chris G. Pang

  29. 5 out of 5

    Averosse Trading

  30. 5 out of 5

    TΞΞL❍CK Mith!lesh

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