Books for Entrepreneurs , Being a startup Entrepreneur means that there’s a 20% chance you won’t make it past your first year — yikes!
In this review, we look at Start from Zero by Dane Maxwell.
This is a playbook for building a profitable business regardless of expertise, capital, or other perceived hindrances — including a lack of ideas!
What’s even better is that it’s neatly summarized into a 15-minute read.
Enough rambling, let’s get into it! Books for Entrepreneurs
1. About the author
Before digging into Start from Zero, it’s crucial to look at Dane Maxwell to understand why he’s a credible source.
In his book, Start from Zero, Maxwell makes a compelling case for how thinking like an entrepreneur can benefit you — even if you don’t own a “software as a service” (SaaS) company.
While there is a 20% chance of failure, the majority of businesses grow out of fast and cheap attempts.
So, why not take the opportunity to learn from someone else’s mistakes?
You might be wondering how that’s beneficial to you?
The simple explanation is that these entrepreneurs learned all the necessary hard lessons that got them their successful companies in the first place.
Instead of hype, you’ll benefit from a comprehensive book filled with actionable lessons that you can apply to your own business.
We recommend this book for entrepreneurs just starting out and those with an existing business aiming to scale their product revenues.
So, let’s take a look at exactly what Dane Maxwell had to endure to get his business booming.
1.1. The beginning stages
By age 22, Dane Maxwell had already started 22 different businesses. One for every year he had lived.
That’s especially notable, considering most people don’t even launch one business at any point in their life.
Pretty impressive, right? Well, yes and no.Books for Entrepreneurs
After all, anybody can start a business just as quickly as they can bring an end to it.
Still, to launch companies so lavishly at such a young age tells you something about Maxwell’s ambition and determination.
While the majority of these companies failed, they did so quickly and cheaply enough to allow Maxwell to learn and apply vital lessons to the start-up businesses that followed.
Some of those businesses even offered enough success to sustain Dane’s dream (which we’ll get into in a bit).
1.2. Crucial lessons
Maxwell developed some essential insights during his early experiences buying and selling websites while making money with Google AdSense.
These insights came down to the two following lessons:
- There is no one way to do something — Dane focused his energy on passive income above all else in his business
- Don’t purchase your own freedom — In the case of a deal-gone-wrong, don’t try to buy yourself out of it
These lessons also made Dane realize that selling software was great if his clients only wanted certain components of what he was trying to sell.
While his business offers were great, his customers never wanted to buy his product as a whole solution.
With so much experience being an entrepreneur, Maxwell realized that he needed to fulfill a need from the customer’s perspective, instead of just creating something and convincing people they needed it.
The above insight was a game-changer for Maxwell, as he now understood that he didn’t need to be an industry expert.
In fact, the ideas didn’t have to be his own, nor did he really need to know what he was doing.
What he needed to do, however, was listen intently to his clients’ needs and solve their problems by being a facilitator.
1.3. Passion for the business and education-based market
Throughout his time as an entrepreneur and business builder, Maxwell developed a passion for education-based marketing.
Maxwell teaches many of his apprentices to clearly define who’s going to be interested in their products (target market) and then find a way to captivate that audience.
From there on out, the focus is on providing clients with valuable and actionable content to build strong relationships and trust.
It’s through this finely tuned framework that Maxwell makes the selling of products and services a fluid and simple transaction — from business owner to client.
What’s best of all about this method?
Well, the fact that it’s mutually beneficial to both parties makes this a killer strategy to include.
1.4. Where is he now?
Maxwell runs The Foundation, which he’s said is one of his favorite projects.
He spends most hours of the day and night on the project. How? Well, there’s a catch to this job — it’s not like any other “standard” one.
Maxwell wanted to create a business based on principles that would benefit his own well-being and that of others.
Through the work he puts into The Foundation, Maxwell gains immense fulfillment and pleasure.
This is because it’s an exact business model of what he wants to be doing — helping people out and getting their businesses on the right track.
One of the key takeaways from The Foundation’s framework is that you can start with nothing.
With zero ideas, limited money, and little to no experience, you can still create something special.
This idea of starting with next to nothing is the crux of Maxwell’s book, Start from Zero.
2. Summarizing Start from Zero
Start from Zero is an interactive book that requires your committed participation to best absorb and leverage its insightful lessons.
Maxwell’s work aims to take you from having nothing to building meaningful business and income streams.
It gives you the tools and insights to do so by teaching you to think like an entrepreneur.
As such, Maxwell has laid out 7 unique adventures for his readers:
2.1. The three little rocks that’ll keep you afloat
In this adventure, you’ll gain knowledge that precisely illustrates how you’re going to manage jealousy.
As an entrepreneur, you’re going to have moments of envy, where people are outperforming you.
It’s a natural feeling, but you can’t allow it to overpower you. Rather, you must find a way to use it to your advantage.
In this adventure, Maxwell will also highlight the cardinal rule of successful entrepreneurship.
This mantra, when applied correctly, will be your shield from being poor, lazy, and doing business the dumb way.
Maybe that last part is a touch blunt, but that’s what we like about Maxwell.
He cuts through the fluff and nonsense and tells you how it is.
This adventure is called “learn what you don’t need”.
Maxwell highlights how most entrepreneurs aren’t irrefutable geniuses with all the answers to their problems.
Most entrepreneurs are going in blind without a shred of expertise ― they hire great teams to get over the hump.
The paradigm shift that Maxwell focuses on in this adventure is that you must stop noticing the barriers in your way.
Instead, he brings your existing advantages to light and shows how you can make the most of a not-so-great situation.
2.3. Discovering your needs
There are characteristics and strengths you must develop if you’re intending to evolve as an entrepreneur.
It won’t happen if you can’t deal with mitigating factors, such as a weak self-perception or fear of taking risks.
In this section of his book, Maxwell utilizes his teachings to transform what you think of yourself. He also hones in on how you manage feelings of fear.
When you handle those crucial elements of your mindset, everything that follows will seem automatic and natural.
More specifically, in this section, you’ll understand how to overcome the inhibitions that might otherwise hold you back.
Being an entrepreneur is more than just running a business. People buy from the person, the brains behind the idea.
If you have a good idea and encourage trust amongst your customers but still don’t feel good about yourself, then what’s the point of it all?
Best Books for Entrepreneurs
You have to continue to grow as an individual to be an entrepreneur.
Here are some ways you can do exactly that:
- Build good, healthy habits
- Continue to learn from those in the industry
- Never give up a learning opportunity
- Don’t become complacent, even if you’ve achieved success
- Stay focused on your personal life philosophy
And don’t forget, a healthy mind = a healthy business.
2.4. Four distinct brains
Maxwell discusses 4 different kinds of brains in this adventure. Books for Entrepreneurs
Interestingly, he points out that most entrepreneurs can succeed with only 2 or 3 of these brains.
There’s a catch: 3 can bring you success, but developing all 4 will give you results beyond imagination (especially in terms of your bank balance).
Here are the “4 brains” he discusses:
2.4.1. Surveyor brain
Imagine being able to see the income streams in everything.
Where other people might see materials, ideas, problems, or noise, envision yourself seeing pathways for income.
To us, that sounds like the entrepreneurial dream — the Surveyor brain to a tee.
2.4.2. Tiller brain
This brain acts as a perfect complement to the Surveyor, as you figure out how to scout the surveyed landscape.
Meaning, after you’ve seen a revenue stream, this brain helps you figure out how to collect, making things a bit more concrete.
2.4.3. Planter brain
It’s hard to imagine being a thriving entrepreneur without being able to plant scalable product seeds from scratch.
Of course, Maxwell points out that it’s possible to miss out on one of these brains, but lacking in the thorough and masterful Planter brain seems like a tremendous setback.
Maxwell helps you develop your Gardener brain and attempts to aid you in avoiding those activities that waste your time.
In their place, you’ll end up gardening and growing revenue with valuable, streamlined actions.
2.5. Seven vital skills
Much of Maxwell’s teachings revolve around cutting through the nonsense and focusing on what’s most important. Books for Entrepreneurs
Out of the hundreds — if not thousands — of skills you could learn, Maxwell extracts the 7 skills below.
He firmly believes the following skills are what will help you sell, outsource, learn from mishaps, and be an authentic owner that leads from the front:
It’s easy to see why these skills would be beneficial. About us
They’ll essentially aid you to grow on 4 levels.
Dane Maxwell’s Start from Zero is genuinely meant to stick with you throughout your journey as an entrepreneur.
As such, when you’ve mastered all the skills in the above adventures, you don’t simply put the book away to collect dust.
This adventure gives you a map to help you keep your eyes on the prize throughout your evolution as a business owner and entrepreneur.
Here are 5 ways that you can measure your entrepreneurial growth:
1. Look at how much you’re earning
This is one of the easiest ways you can track your growth.
Simply have a look at your financial statements and compare them to when you started out.
You can easily track your earnings by using systeme.io!
2. Evaluate customer satisfaction
Even if your company isn’t doing that well on the financial front, you still have the opportunity to see what your customers think.
If customer satisfaction is high, then there may be a good chance of financial success in the future.
Simply work a bit more on your marketing strategies.
3. Consider how much your company has grown
4. Evaluate employee satisfaction
One study shows that happy employees are 13% more productive.
The idea behind this is the sense of accomplishment your workers are getting and how well they’re progressing.
Make sure these needs are met, and they’ll continue to be the worker bees you need to sustain a thriving business. Books for Entrepreneurs
5. Look at where you’re positioned in the market
Measuring your success based on your market position requires you to keep a close eye on your competitors’ performance.
Make sure to track customer satisfaction through surveys, keep your social media updated, and look at all your sales reports.
Whether you’re a total newbie or a seasoned entrepreneurial veteran, these tips and Maxwell’s map will keep you on the straight and narrow, so you never lose your laser focus.
2.7. Examples of real-world success
It’s all well and good for Maxwell to talk about the theories that’ll help you thrive as an entrepreneur, but have any of his tips ever worked for anyone?
In this adventure, there’s a list of 15 individuals who followed his teaching and transformed themselves into total rock stars.
It acts as some necessary proof in the pudding, so to speak.
3. Our final verdict
We’ll give Maxwell’s work an A-minus.
The problem with any book of this nature is the misconception that it can work for everyone, and Maxwell — being a salesman — falls into this trap.
His journey isn’t going to be a hard-fast success for everyone, and merely getting this book won’t turn you into a six-figure earner. You, on your own, are going to have to learn these lessons. Books for Entrepreneurs
Still, Maxwell provides insightful guidance throughout Start from Zero.
If you commit to his teachings, it will most certainly pay off during your entrepreneurial journey.
Once you’re ready to start this journey, you have tools out there like systeme.io that can help run your entire business, all in one place! Books for Entrepreneurs