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The Pumpkin Plan: A Simple Strategy to Grow a Remarkable Business in Any Field

4.13  ·  Rating Details  ·  554 Ratings  ·  64 Reviews
Each year Americans start one million new businesses, nearly 80 percent of which fail within the first five years. Under such pressure to stay alive--let alone grow--it's easy for entrepreneurs to get caught up in a never-ending cycle of "sell it--do it, sell it--do it" that leaves them exhausted, frustrated, and unable to get ahead no matter how hard they try. This is the ...more
ebook, 240 pages
Published July 1st 2012 by Portfolio (first published January 1st 2012)
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Очевидная идея концентрации внимания и усилий на максимально прибыльных и минимально "напряжных" для предпринимателя направлениях. Основную мысль можно изложить в нескольких предложениях. Ценных материалов на пару-тройку страниц. Остальное - живописные примеры, размышления и убеждения, что методы работают. Стиль изложения традиционен.
Я не любитель подобной бизнес-литературы, но время от времени обращаю внимание на хвалебные отзывы и некоторые книги даже читаю. Тем не менее, думаю, что ценителям
Apr 24, 2013 Sergei_kalinin rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: marketing, management

1. Книга будет явно послабее чем "Стартап без бюджета..." :(

2. Основная идея проста: оптимизируйте свою клиентскую базу; избавьтесь от низкоприбыльных и неудобных клиентов; работайте с теми 20%, которые приносят вам 80% прибыли.

Идея дофига оригинальна :( , она есть в любом учебнике по менеджменту/маркетингу торговли.

3. "Плюсы" книги:
- написано задорно и весло, мотивирует на подвиги :) , легко читается
- много кейсов по оптимизации этой самой клиентской базы, причём на примерах очень разноплан
MsSmartiePants the candy...
Am really lovin' this book! This author is a fave of mine. He has a previous book, writes for the Wall Street Journal as well as other pub's, and has several great videos on YouTube. I was asked to read and critique this book before it's July 5 release.

Oh NO! Haven't finished the book and it's already July 5th! Well, it's just too "meaty"! Why read a great book if you're not going to implement what you learn from it?

The Pumpkin Plan is a well written and fun read. The con
I grabbed this one when it was the daily deal at audible, thought it sounded interesting. When I first started listening to it I thought it was odd that the author narrated it, didn't expect him to be good, but he did a great job. You could tell he truly believed what he was talking about.

The concepts in this book were good ones, easy, yet I can see where people would have a hard time to "firing" clients, it does seem counter productive.

I think if you are an entrepreneur this would be a good b
Sep 19, 2015 Leticia rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone who has his or her own business (or wants to).
Shelves: business
Mike Michalowicz has a knack for putting things in a certain way - and The Pumpkin Plan is one of those examples. I first came to this author through his latest work (Profit First). And I am paying serious attention to The Pumpkin Plan as a result of the fact that Profit First radically changed my business.

It's a simple work, one that you can read quickly and easily. While, like a lot of business books there are exercises to do before you go to the next piece, I don't work that way. I read it on
Bree Ervin
Jan 01, 2013 Bree Ervin rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Kill your darlings and streamline success with The Pumpkin Plan
The writers out there will understand the reference to killing your darlings. We've all had to do it. We spend hours, days sometimes, lovingly crafting the perfect scene, or the perfect line, only to have to delete it in revision. Sometimes we kill it because it is overly purple, sometimes because it just doesn't fit the book anymore no matter how much we try to round the edges - it's still a square peg and we've written a round hole
Oct 24, 2015 Alex rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: business
I liked this book despite its simplicity and cheesiness. I think it's a sign of a good advice when you read it and think "well, of course!" but then realize how few people actually follow it.

In short, this book is built on the main metaphor that if somebody wants to grow their business to be a large one, they should follow practices similar to the competitive pampkin growers. Such as watch your seeds and weed out those which do not work, until you find the one the most promising - then focus all
Soundview Executive Book Summaries
The Pumpkin Plan: A Simple Strategy to Grow a Remarkable Business in Any Field by Mike Michalowicz was chosen by Soundview Executive Book Summaries as one of the Top 30 Business Books of 2013.


Entrepreneurs are tasked with numerous decisions in the process of creating and building their businesses. As they undertake this task, they search numerous places for inspiration. Author, speaker and successful entrepreneur Mike Michalowicz found his eureka moment in the garden or, mo
Apr 26, 2016 Ray rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: real-estate
This book came along at the perfect time and managed to clarify a lot that's been on my mind as an entrepreneur. "The customer is always right" is false, and taking on any and all business is a perfect way to run yourself ragged, under-deliver on quality, and probably go broke. Instead, find what you do well, find the customers that will appreciate what you do well, and focus on that at the expense of everyone else. Paradoxically, you'll come out ahead.

I was afraid the book would become repetiti
Serge Boucher
Tim Ferriss with vegetables. Like the 4-hour work week, this is a cheap riff on two or three common-sense ideas found in any business school primer, that only *seems* edgy and original because it's written and read by a loud-mouth pseudo-entertainer who knows how to sound confident and successful and fills his "advice" with unfunny jokes. If you really have a business that you want to grow, any discussion with a mentor, no matter how short, will be more valuable than reading this. If you care ab ...more
Lindsay Tweedle
Jan 29, 2015 Lindsay Tweedle rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2015
Straightforward, honest and full of genius ideas. A lot of them are so simple you'll wonder why you haven't thought of them, but the beauty of that is that with some hard work, you can make them happen.

Michalowicz is clear that it won't be easy work, but he lays out in clear and easy to follow steps how to bring your business from the brink of extinction to raging success.

And he's funny too. You feel like you're sitting down and having coffee with a good friend.

I would recommend this book to a
Troy Swinehart
Feb 26, 2016 Troy Swinehart rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Another one by Mike that I will probably look up soon.

So as chance would have it I was able to get my hands on an initial release copy direct from the author. This will be 19 of 24 for the year.....I enjoyed his last book "The Toilet Paper Entrepreneur" I am hopeful this is of similar quality and frankness.

The Pumpkin it! My (cheap version) of the Plan:

1) Plant the right seed! - A bad idea is a bad idea and no mater what you do you can't make a great business of it.

2) Cut away the g
Nov 02, 2012 Natalie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I think this book is best geared towards people in business who have been working so hard for so long but not seeing much return. I am just starting out with my own business so there wasn't a lot that directly applied to me, but Mike's down-to-earth, truly modern and fresh way of writing really pulled me through the whole book with ease and interest despite this, and I learned a lot about how not to run my business and how to set myself up for success by implementing some of Mike's ideas early o ...more
Jan 05, 2013 Tina rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: business, nonfiction
Mike Michalowicz doesn’t mess around. As a successful entrepreneur, he has experience to share and tells it like it is. If you’re not willing to take certain steps in your business, you may not experience the levels of success he has and it’s as simple as that.

In The Pumpkin Plan, he works from the analogy of a farmer dedicating time and resources to building a prize winning pumpkin. It’s about focusing on one specific thing, getting rid of things (and customers!) that you don’t want, and putti
Alain Burrese
Oct 15, 2012 Alain Burrese rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: success
I enjoyed Michalowicz's “The Toilet Paper Entrepreneur” even with it's bit of potty talk. If you've read that, you know that Michalowicz isn't afraid to say it like he sees it, have some fun, and bluntly tell you no-holds-barred how he succeeded in business and how you can too.

Mike Michalowicz is back with “The Pumpkin Plan.” Using the strategies pumpkin farmers use to grow enormous prize winning pumpkins, the author provides a simple strategy to grow a remarkable business in any field. Is the b
Rebekka Steg
The Pumpkin Plan: A Simple Strategy to Grow a Remarkable Business in Any Fieldby Mike Michalowicz (author of The Toilet Paper Entrepreneur) is an excellent book about achieving success as an entrepreneur in any field.

*Full disclosure, I was given a copy of the book in exchange for an honest review.*

Now, this book is definitely aimed primarily at entrepreneurs, secondarily at everyone else in charge of running a business. However, there's still a lot of great points that are valuable to the re
Dec 11, 2012 Phil rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
The "pumpkin plan" of the title comes from author Mike Michalowicz's encounters with champion pumpkin farmers. The process, he writes, involves planting promising seeds, watering them, and then removing all diseased or damaged pumpkins. "When they grow larger, identify the stronger, faster growing pumpkins. Then, remove all the less promising pumpkins. Repeat until you have one pumpkin on each vine." The farmers then focus all of their attention on the big pumpkin.

It's an arresting image, and Mi
Jan 12, 2013 Steve rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The Pumpkin Plan provides great advice on how to take your business from being stagnant, and perhaps an energy drain, to a sustainable, growing organization where you can not only be successful, but also have a reasonable work-life balance (if you like that sort of thing). Like all business books, this book provides advice about what to do (and what not to do), and it also provides concrete steps to put the advice into action, even before you finish the book; after reading the first few chapters ...more
Aug 14, 2012 Paul rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Mike "gets it" with regards to building a successful business. He has been featured on an MSNBC business-makeover series. He brings in a small team of specialists to small businesses and helps them find the center, the sweet-spot of their business. He / they help focus and their results are nothing short of remarkable.

Small business owners typically struggle with some of several components of making their business work during the startup phase. This lack can be managing financials, marketing, ma
Apr 17, 2016 Benjamin rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2016-books-read
I loved this book! I was concerned that it was not going to address online business in the vein of ebay and etsy, but my fears were misplaced. The principles were solid and felt very real; it is obvious that the author has gone through all of the stages of grief normally associated with starting a business. I will read everything that he has written and look for future books.
Leslie Shreve
This is SUCH a great book. Mike Michalowicz is so fantastic and his methodology for building and growing successful businesses is easy to follow, straightforward and actionable. He's funny, entertaining and makes changing and improving your business more fun, instead of exhausting or overwhelming. Thanks Mike for giving your audience ideas, examples and solutions that can be used right away and a great resource book that can be referenced over and over again.
Dave Ciancio
Apr 13, 2014 Dave Ciancio rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Much like Mike's book, "The Toilet Paper Entrepreneur" this book will give you a practical, smart and modern way to think about and organize your business. Most business idea books just give the reader wide approach concepts and thinking patterns while Mike gives very specific and insightful ways to plan for the success of your business. Worthy of reading twice!
Allison Jones
Jul 04, 2016 Allison Jones rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: business
I read this book every year. ESSENTIAL reading for the small business person.
How to build a business right by building around your best clients.
This book has changed how I do business--fundamentally.
I've given about 20 copies of this book to colleagues and friends in their own businesses and recommend it to the photographers that I mentor.
Jun 11, 2016 Jeff rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
The Pumpkin Plan is full of useful ideas, but it suffers from the same issues as many of these books. The plan is simple and quite obvious: Plant lots of seeds, focus on the good plants, prune the bad plants. There is really nothing new here. The author skips over the most difficult part of deciding which plants are good vs bad. This is really a motivational book, with the goal of getting you to do some thinking about your business prospects.
James Leigh
May 24, 2016 James Leigh rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I liked this book. Mike Michalowicz, uses prizewinning pumpkin farmers as an example of how to grow your business. His writing is funny, and conversational entertaining the reader while delivering a great plan. I liked the stories and the examples he used throughout the book. It is a fast read and one worth doing.
Oct 20, 2014 Elizabeth rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I loved this book because it had an excellent balance of personal experience, personalized advice, concrete plans to get you started, and vague suggestions to get your ideas flowing. You do not have to know much business jargon at all to follow the ideas in this book.
Apr 11, 2015 Adrian rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Audiobook presentation was lively and it was easy to stay engaged during my long commute. Unfortunately, there was too much unnecessary vulgar language. I found myself having to turn off the book after picking up my kids from daycare.
Rolando Gill
Eh, I thought it would be better. Specialize, fire your bad clients, amaze your good clients with an UPOD strategy. (under promise - over deliver) yada yada yada. A lot of stories but not a whole lot of real content.
Jan 09, 2014 Paul rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I loved this book. It was very practical and clear. All the arguments were well reasoned and sensible. The down-to-earth approach used in this book was refreshing.

Reading the author narrated audiobook (always a plus for me) was great. Mike is a good narrator and you can really sense his passion for the subject. You can tell he lives and breathes this stuff.

I'd gladly recommend this book to any business owner.
Tina Khera
Mar 16, 2014 Tina Khera rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Soloprenuers who want to go to the next level
Great insight and inspiration for the soloprenuer who wants to take his or her business to the next level and get off the "hamster wheel"
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“Your Immutable Laws are the solid, healthy root system that will grow giant, mongo pumpkins every time. Dare to be exactly who you are. Let your business be an amplification of your authentic self, and watch it grow by leaps and bounds. L” 0 likes
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