3 Small Biz Easy Reads for the Summer

Despite the monsoon-like weather we’ve been experiencing in Colorado, summer has arrived.  Time for the mountains, beach, golf, family, vacation, and relaxing with a good book.  If you’re like me, you like an easy read – nothing too heavy (or thick) – but something that will entertain or educate.  Maybe you already have some books picked out for the summer, but if not, here are a few good reads that may help boost your business, too!

In my consulting practice, I’m always looking for better ways to help my clients improve their cash flow and profitability.  Most of the time the answer is in the numbers, yet the solutions are in the areas of product, people, process and planning.  So you will notice my suggested readings are not just about the financials.

My first recommendation is Making Money Is Killing Your Business by Chuck Blakeman.  I couldn’t resist such a provocative title…. I mean isn’t that why we are in business?  Chuck Blakeman is a local entrepreneur, businessman, consultant and mentor in the Denver area.  His premise for the book is that going into business ought not to be about making money, but building a business that makes money so you can have a life too.  This is an easy read with great content and lots of “how to” advice for implementing his recommendations.  By the way, Chuck has developed a “business” working with small businesses to guide them through his process.  You can look them up at the 3to5 Club.

Another top recommendation is Traction: Get A Grip On Your Business by Gino Wickman. Gino has developed the Entrepreneurial Operating System (EOS) that when implemented, helps leaders run better businesses with better control and a life balance.  His passion is to help entrepreneurs get what they want from their businesses.  The book speaks to businesses with management teams that need help working as a team toward specific goals.  After reading this book, I began implementing a number of his ideas with my clients.  Perhaps the most significant has been the weekly executive/management/staff meeting.  If implemented, you will probably never allow another 4 hour weekly meeting in your business.  His EOS can be self-implemented or professionally implemented with his approved trainers.  No doubt you will pick up lots of ideas for running a better company.

Lastly, one of my favorites (no surprise) Financial Intelligence for Entrepreneurs by Karen Berman & Joe Knight.  The byline of the book is “What You Really Need To Know About The Numbers”.  This is by far the best book I’ve come across that demystifies the financial fundamentals for small businesses.  Learning financial intelligence is about developing some simple fundamental skills….available to all of us.  As a financial expert, I have struggled at times to relate financial concepts to my clients.  This book has been a great resource for me to bridge that gap with my clients.  It has become my go to resource for developing financial intelligence with my clients.  Just browsing the Table of Contents and picking a topic is a great way to start reading….and learning!

If you tackle any or all of these books, please call me to discuss your reaction and what you learned.  Have a great summer!

Written by

Rick Arthur is a CFO whose expertise is built on Financial Intelligence and 35 years in senior financial roles. Coupled with a CEO’s perspective and the experience of building his own $20 million company, he brings a unique depth of insight into business from the top down. Wired to get to know people, Rick works hand-in-hand with business owners of intentional, growth-oriented companies, solidifying relationships as a trusted advisor and confidant to his clients. He leverages his experience to help business owners gain traction and stay laser-focused on the company’s vision, cash flow, and profitability – all while creating big picture solutions for strategic planning, growth and sustainable success.