Build the Damn Thing: How To Start a Successful Business If You’re Not a Rich White Guy

Portfolio. Jun. 2022. 272p. ISBN 9780593329269. $28. BUS
Finney (founder and CEO of Genius Guild, a venture studio that invests in Black entrepreneurs) has written an insightful guide to entrepreneurship with practical and knowledgeable advice. Her step-by-step how-to manual is for readers looking to turn ideas into successful start-ups and will help them translate out-of-the-box thinking into a viable, high-growth company, based on what she calls “the four P’s” of great entrepreneurship: Potential, Process, Performance, and Pivot. As the book’s title implies, Finney encourages beginner entrepreneurs not to wait for opportunities to arrive, but instead to break down the barriers and build their own opportunities. Finney covers topics such as dealing with setbacks, testing business ideas, raising start-up capital, and building a team (here she makes the case that an entrepreneur’s team shouldn’t necessarily be their friends or family). The book also includes case studies and “toolboxes” of skill-building exercises based on specific topics (e.g., how to deal with fear of failure).
VERDICT Inspirational, intriguing and practical, Finney’s toolkit is especially good for would-be entrepreneurs, entrepreneurs who have recently started a business, and business students. Highly recommended.
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