When I first read this book my expectation was that there would be a lot of tough love advice where the author tries to tell you the unpopular things you need to do in a business to be financially successful. Example, items like how you have to sacrifice a lot of personal activities and not trusting people.
While the book did have a lot of points like these, there are a lot of moments where Cloutier’s advice seems so vastly different and controversial that it definitely caught my attention. For example, saying how you shouldn’t pay your vendors on time is still a bit of a shocker to me. In some funny ways though I was actually expecting more of that as all of the edification and hype literature about this book kept emphasizing how it was supposed to be very hard-hitting.
The book does focus mainly on ways to help turn a business around and so you can expect to read a lot of doom and gloom stories with ways to get you out of that cycle. It’s definitely not the happy go lucky approach that a lot of other books use.
I personally don’t think that most the advice is too significant for people who run a small business where the operation revolves around say just yourself. I say this because there is a lot of preaching about employees and how you should deal with them in terms of pay and discipline. Nowadays a solo operation business is probably more common such as people having their own online auction business or say people who make tens of thousands through affiliate marketing.
But if you are a business that does millions in sales with a traditional company type of setup a lot of the advice seems perfectly sensible. For example, putting people on a pay for performance plan makes sense as opposed to just paying people to show up and not worry about results. Especially if your business is unprofitable for whatever reason this type of advice seems like the smart thing to do.
Is this book useful for people who are not like a large corporation? It is, but at the same time I would have to say there are probably better books out there if you are a solo or dual team operation. Like most business type of books the key emphasis is your mentality when it comes to money and how you do things.
The impression I walked away with after reading this book is that it serves people best who are in that “bankruptcy” type of scenario. This will help to give you that kick in the butt and slap to the face to make you do what is necessary to turn things around. Basically, focus on your profits and do what is necessary to improve that.