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The Art of the Start 2.0: The Time-Tested, Battle-Hardened Guide for Anyone Starting Anything

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A new product, a new service, a new company, a new division, a new organization, a new anything—where there’s a will, here’s the way. It begins with a dream that just won’t quit, the once-in-a-lifetime thunderbolt of pure inspiration, the obsession, the world-beater, the killer app, the next big thing. Everyone who wants to make the world a better place becomes possessed by a grand idea.
But what does it take to turn your idea into action?  Whether you are an entrepreneur, intrapreneur, or not-for-profit crusader, there’s no shortage of advice available on issues such as writing a business plan, recruiting, raising capital, and branding. In fact, there are so many books, articles, and Web sites that many startups get bogged down to the point of paralysis. Or else they focus on the wrong priorities and go broke before they discover their mistakes. In The Art of the Start, Guy Kawasaki brings two decades of experience as one of business’s most original and irreverent strategists to offer the essential guide for anyone starting anything, from a multinational corporation to a church group. At Apple in the 1980s, he helped lead one of the great companies of the century, turning ordinary consumers into evangelists. As founder and CEO of Garage Technology Ventures, a venture capital firm, he has field-tested his ideas with dozens of newly hatched companies. And as the author of bestselling business books and articles, he has advised thousands of people who are making their startup dreams real. From raising money to hiring the right people, from defining your positioning to creating a brand, from creating buzz to buzzing the competition, from managing a board to fostering a community, this book will guide you through an adventure that’s more art than science—the art of the start.

336 pages, Hardcover

First published September 9, 2004

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5 stars
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Displaying 1 - 30 of 659 reviews
Profile Image for C.
1,076 reviews1,052 followers
September 9, 2021
An excellent handbook for those starting a business or non-profit, stressing function over form and action over planning. The lessons apply to organizations whether they're bootstrapping or seeking funding from venture capitalists or angel investors. Kawasaki includes plenty of historical examples and firsthand experience, making this a practical real-world resource that's more valuable than a simply conceptual textbook.

Guy Kawasaki is a respected serial entrepreneur whose articles I've read in Inc. magazine. The book's lessons are relevant, concise, and entertaining. Each chapter covers a particular topic (bootstrapping, branding, etc.) and ends with exercises and recommended reading.

Great ideas for starting things
1. Make meaning: create a product or service that makes the world better.
2. Make mantra: turn your meaning into a mantra, not a boring mission statement.
3. Get going: create and deliver; don't over-plan.
4. Define your business model: figure out how to make money.
5. Weave a MAT: set Milestones, know the Assumptions in your model, accomplish Tasks

Positioning
• Be inspiring and energizing.
• Target a specific niche.
• Use plain English (avoid jargon and buzzwords).

Pitching
• Pitch the real-world use of your product or service.
• Help people picture why they need it; "catalyze fantasy".
• Alleviate pain.
• Provide a demo.
• End with a call to action.

Bootstrapping
• Ship, then fix based on customer feedback.
• Focus on function, not form.
• Understaff and outsource non-strategic functions as much as possible.

Recruiting
• Don't trust intuition, trust facts.
• Only hire someone you'd love to bump into at the grocery store.

Partnering
• Form partnerships for financial reasons, not to impress others.
• Partner to accentuate strengths, not cover weaknesses.
• It's not what you know or who you know, but who knows you.
• Listen more than you talk.
• Connect based on shared passions.
• Give and ask for favors.

Branding
• Create something contagious.
• Make it easy to use.
• Recruit evangelists.

Lead generation methods
• Conduct small seminars.
• Give speeches.
• Get published.
• Network proactively.
• Participate in industry organizations.

Be a mensch
• Help lots of people.
• Do what's right.
• Pay back society.

• Writing a business plan forces you to think through your business.
• Don't worry about money as much as where you're going.
Profile Image for Quinn.
510 reviews39 followers
April 15, 2011
Hmm... Pretty boring for a book that is suppose to light a fire. The real art of starting is starting, which I did, I just couldn't finish it.
Profile Image for Charles.
Author 2 books10 followers
July 20, 2015
I'm utterly bewildered by the high ratings and rave reviews this book is getting. I'm not seeing anything that's new or thought-provoking from it and, instead, the book seems to hop randomly around the topic of startups without getting particularly deep into anything. A lot of it seems to be taken from the ideas of others, such as The Lean Startup and the works of Seth Godin, but at least Kawasaki attributes these ideas to them and refers to their books, so at least his readers can go off and read something with more meat.

Take, for example, the chapter called the Art of Evangelizing, in which Kawasaki suggests that in order to get a standing ovation when public speaking, you should "have something interesting to say"; when encouraging 'evangelists' you should 'assign tasks and expect them to get done'; you should also ask for help. He also gives some advice on writing emails, slotted into the chapter on evangelizing without any obvious reason (like so much elsewhere in the book): Kawasaki suggests that we shouldn't write in caps and we should answer emails within 48 hours. I could go on, but suffice it to say, when I read books like these my highlighter is usually spraying ink all over the page - but not for this book.

Some of it is also contradictory. He suggests bootstrapping snd avoiding external funding, before launching into a chapter on getting external funding. He advocates an MVP, but then talks about the need to launch a 'complete' and 'deep' (feature-rich) product. Some of it is such common sense advice that it's almost pointless wasting paper and printing ink, such as 'sweat the big stuff' like developing and selling your product rather than getting business cards printed.

My one takeaway idea from the book is that we should focus on adoption of a product, not scaling. Hence the 2 star. But perhaps someone could enlighten me as to why so many people rate this with a 5.0? There's so much that's better in this field.
Profile Image for Anita Campbell.
Author 9 books66 followers
August 20, 2011
I think this is one of the best startup books out there -- and Kawasaki's best book. But it's not a book for everyone.

The focus is on tech entrepreneurs. While much of the advice is applicable to other industries, the book will hit the bullseye specifically with those starting technology businesses.

Another thing about this book: parts of it contain advice for those seeking funding from angel and VC investors. Since that covers a tiny percentage of the entrepreneurial population, it's really targeted toward a narrow niche.

However, even if you choose never to seek investment funding, I still recommend the book. Why? Because investors ask hard questions. The kind of thinking you need to do to satisfy investors, is actually the kind of rigorous thinking more entrepreneurs should do for themselves. I mean, why fool yourself about the market potential for your startup, or about whether you've even thought through expense projections?

The book is written in a snappy take-no-prisoners style. At times it's sarcastic and snarky. You won't get a lot of coddling or sympathy in this book. If you're looking for moral support, or gentle mentoring, or nurturing pats on the back to encourage you along ... well, you're not going to find much of that here.

No, "Art of the Start" is more like a kick in the pants. But sometimes a kick in the pants is exactly what a startup entrepreneur needs.



Profile Image for Conrad Zero.
Author 3 books137 followers
November 19, 2012
Not bad, but focused on a very niche market. The Art of the Start by Guy Kawasaki is subtitled "The Time-Tested, Battle-Hardened Guide for Anyone Starting Anything." Unfortunately, that isn't entirely true, unless you consider reading only the chapters that pertain to you. The book does have a very specific audience in mind, and the subtitle should have been "How to take your start-up-business-idea and use venture capital to become the next Apple/Nike/Coke/Microsoft."

Like I said, pretty niche, and not for "Anyone Starting Anything." There is no-nonsense advice on partnerships, bootstrapping, seeking venture capital, marketing, etc. Nothing you won't find in other books, but Guy does add a healthy dose of realism, and his writing is fresh, insightful and easily accessible.

Chapter 11, "The Art of Being a Mensch" really should be required reading for Anyone Starting Anything, and should be read First, before the rest of the book.

Guy Kawasaki was "one of the individuals responsible for the success of the Macintosh computer" and currently works in a venture capital group garage.com. So he definitely has the credentials to back up his writing. He has seen firsthand what it takes to take a startup into a mega-corporation.
Profile Image for John Montgomery.
Author 2 books3 followers
March 17, 2012
A book by Guy Kawasaki is always a fun read. Kawasaki has a great sense of humor and is not afraid to speak his truth. The Art of the Start and Rob Adams' A Good Hard Kick in the Ass are two of my favorite books about the process of starting a company. Both authors speak their truth.

Kawasaki has an innate sense of how much information the brain can absorb at any one time. This book is composed of lots of digestible nuggets of advice, which he brings to life with stories and quotations. Kawasaki's use of language is loose and informal, and makes you feel like he is having a relaxed conversation with you. This book is easy to read and well organized.

Kawasaki was one of my role models for Great from the Start. I admire the comfort and ease of his communication style. He has high emotional intelligence and makes a strong heart-to-heart connection with his readers and those who hear his presentations. He is an effective communicator and a maven of marketing. His playful sense of humor makes his writer's voice comfortable to follow. His perspective provides insight into how to connect with audiences and customers.
Profile Image for Stan Stinson.
58 reviews8 followers
May 7, 2015
My head is about to explode!

I am only half way through The Art of the Start 2.0 and it has put so much information into my head it is about to explode and I had to pause here and write this review. I don't often do reviews before I finish the book but this is an exception because this is an exceptional book. There is so much valuable information contained in this book if you have already started or are thinking about starting your own business you need to get your copy today. Use it as a reference or read it from beginning to end. You will learn something that will help you in your venture guaranteed.

The author's goal is to "make entrepreneurship easier for you" and, if you read what he says and then do it he will have succeeded and you will be well on your way to success too.

I did not read Version 1 but have run my own consulting company of one back around the turn of the century during the Y2K boom or crisis, depending on your perspective, and wish I had known then what I know now after reading this book. I am sure there are more nuggets of wisdom to come in the second half of the book but, even if not, it was still worth the small investment if I get nothing else from it.

He states it better than I could when he says, "Entrepreneurship is about doing, not learning to do. If your attitude is “Cut the crap—let’s get going,” you’re reading the right book by the right author."

Just a few of the subjects you will learn about are (1) premortems, (2) why a Morpheus and a devil’s advocate are not the same thing, (2) why it is important to hire people better than yourself, (3) what a MVVVP is and why you need one. You might also be surprised, as I was, with what kind of smartphone Guy Kawasaki uses.

So, in case you did not get the gist of what I am trying to say here, I really like this book and believe you will too but you have to get your own copy to find out for yourself. Don't delay. Get it today!
Profile Image for ShaiMaa.
155 reviews57 followers
April 17, 2013
كتاب جاي كاواساكي ”فن البداية – الدليل المثبت بالزمن والمحسن بالتجربة لأي شخص يريد أن يبدأ أي شيء“، يعد من كلاسيكيات الكتب التي تحدثت عن ريادة الأعمال، وهو دليل مبسط مباشر يسعى لتحفيز رواد الأعمال الجددد على البدء فوراً، من خلال أحد عشر فصلاً، تفصل المعارف الأساسية اللازمة لقيادة العمل التجاري الناشئ نحو النجاح.

حيث يقودك المؤلف إلى مغامرة مثيرة، في عالم أنشاء الأعمال التجارية، يغلب فيها الطابع الفني على الجانب العلمي، بداية من جمع المال، وحتى توظيف العمالة المناسبة، وذلك في شكل دليل أساسي لأي شخص بصدد البدء في أي مشروع.

فهو كتاب لاغنى عنه لكل من يفكر فى مشروع تجارى، حيث ستتعلم كيف تبدأ مشروع جديد، من الصفر إلى مرحلة تحقيق الارباح، فنجد المؤلف يبدأ معك من مرحلة الافكار، التى من الممكن أن تتحول إلى مشاريع تجارية، و كيفية تطويرها، وجعلها منظومة قائمة على مشروع تجارى حقيقى، و يضرب الكثير من النماذج الحقيقية و قصص النجاح، كى تتعلم منها.

أظن أن السؤال الذي يدور بذهن كل مقبل علي قرأة الكتاب هو:- "ما الذي يحتاجه كل منا لتحويل الأفكار العظيمة إلى أعمال عظيمة".

لذلك يدور الكتاب حول فكرة مفداها أنه حينما يبدأ المرء بالعمل، فهو بذلك قد ضمن أنتهاز الفرصة و عدم ضياعها، ولكن مما يؤسف له أن كثيراً من الناس يعلم بخلاف هذه القاعدة، إذ لا يورطون أنفسهم بالشروع في البدء إلى وقت طويل، لأنهم لا يجدون الوقت الكافي لذلك العمل على حد تعبيرهم.

و يمكن القول أن أغلب الناس مبتلى بهذه الحالة، و لكن الأفضل للمرء أن يورط نفسه ويبدأ، و سيجد أن ذلك الوقت هو الوقت المناسب، و سينجز ذلك العمل.

إذا كانت هناك فكرة عظيمة تجول في ذهنك منذ زمن، ولم تضعها موضع التنفيذ، لأنك لا تدري من أين تبدأ، فإنك تكون قد وقعت في نفس المأزق الذي يقع فيه الكثير من البشر في كل زمان ومكان، فلو انتظر رجال الأعمال ومبدعو المشروعات مثلك، ووضعوا أفكارهم في ثلاجات عقوله��، لما نشأت الشركات ولما بدأت المشروعات.


Profile Image for Lance.
73 reviews1 follower
February 26, 2011
I picked this book up earlier in the year while browsing in the bookstore. That's partly why I picked up the book; I succumbed to a dangerous moment. Putting me in a bookstore is like putting an alcoholic in a bar -- we're both going to get something.

Yet I also found the subtitle enchanting. "The Time-Tested, Battle-Hardened Guide for Anyone Starting Anything." I was initially intrigued by the idea of starting my life over again, so I sat down on the floor in the bookstore aisle to see what this book had to offer.

I was immediately impressed by Kawasaki's tone and style. He's very down to earth and practically minded. I knew without reading very far that I could potentially use this book some day, so I purchased again. Again, putting me in a bookstore . . . .

It was months later that I actually picked up to read all the way through. I wasn't ready before when I started reading it in the bookstore. Now after reading books to formulate my own career plan and feeling energized about the prospect of being my own boss, I was ready.

And Kawasaki did not disappoint. There is a saying, a very old saying, quoted in one of my favorite films of all time -- The Mask of Zorro. "When the pupil is ready, the master will appear." Kawasaki is clearly a master. His practical style revealed a no-nonsense approach to business, and he uses real-life examples from both his experience and the experience of the common person to expound and further clarify his concepts.

And he starts right from the start by discussing the importance of meaning in what we do. "Meaning is not about money, power, or prestige. It's not even about creating a fun place to work. Among other meanings of "meaning" are to make the world a better place, increase the quality of life, right a terrible wrong, and prevent the end of something good. Goals such as these are a tremendous advantage as you travel down the difficult path ahead. . . making meaning is the most powerful motivator there is." It caused me to reflect on the meaning I am creating with my business.

Of course, Kawasaki is a venture capitalist, and while I appreciated his rubber-hits-the-road approach, some of his counsel regarding approaching venture capitalists did not ring with me. But that is simply because I never planned on seeking venture capital to formulate my business. Even with that proviso, I could see that the advice he gives in that regard is as solid as the rest.

The book is a very easy read (I devoured it in three settings) yet very hands-on in its approach. If you want fluff, this is not the book for you. If you want feel-good mush, seek it elsewhere because you won't find it here. But if you want real, if you want what you to do to contribute to making this world a better place, then I highly recommend this book.
Profile Image for Matthew.
6 reviews3 followers
September 14, 2016
Accessible with great, practical advice, especially regarding the forming of a team and bootstrapping versus VC funding. Much of what he's written is consistent with what I'm learning on the Meetup/networking circuit here in Boston.

You can skim through the social media chapters (it's dated - particular emphasis on Google+).

I recommend to anyone considering taking the plunge or actually plunging.
Profile Image for Alison P.
2 reviews
May 12, 2014
I've read the first 20 pages of a lot of supposedly similar books and given up on them. Time, after all, is one of the most valuable assets to an entrepreneur, and I won't have mine wasted. But with The Art of the Start I was learning and thinking on every page, and genuinely got excited about my own business by reading this book; it doesn't get much better than that.

Guy Kawasaki has a gift for getting right to the heart of an issue, in a no-nonsense way, which of course every entrpreneur needs; I'm often thinking: make your point already!

And right when you're about to call into question one of the points the author is making (and he does make some bold points that you're tempted to question) he follows it immediately with "for example..." and the examples are so compelling and clear, you immediately accede his point, change your own thinking slightly, and keep reading.

I wrote Guy Kawasaki a long email while I was on an airplane and had been reading this book, to tell him that I loved it. I normally would never do such a thing, but he points out in the book that you should always include your email address and not hide from customers, and you should answer your email, so it occurred to me that it might be okay to write to him. So I did, and he wrote back to thank me.

I've read a lot of "how-to" books on a lot of topics, from woodworking to business development, and this is one of the best ever written. I'm not sure if my review will compell you to check it out, but I thought it's worth a try. I am not one who normally recommends things, so my recommendation carries extra weight.

Get it. Read it.
Profile Image for Michael Finocchiaro.
Author 2 books5,410 followers
October 17, 2016
The Art of the Start (2004) is another killer crash course but this time in starting stuff. It is clear that Guy took away wheelbarrows of experience and war stories from his stint at Apple and that he has turned that into gold at his current venture, http://www.garages.com – who, incidentally, helps find venture capital for startups in SillyValley. This book is short, witty, readable and an essential “pump you up” for those thinking of starting a business or a venture or a project or whatever. The book is built upon five sections: Causation, Articulation, Activation, Proliferation, and Obligation each of which has one to three chapters on various “Arts” such as the Art of Positioning or the Art of Raising Capital. Like Rules for Revolutionaries, it took all of about two hours to read but once again I was stoked after the last page. I especially appreciated the advice about pitching and recruiting and found them of immediate use. His test of whether you greet or flee a potential employee in a shopping mall is probably one I will use as a bell-weather. I don’t think I am ready yet for a startup but, if I was going in that direction, I’d certainly start here and probably pitch my idea to Guy and garage.com because he (and they) seem to know all the ins and outs. The section about Lowering Barriers to Adoption has immediate meaning for me in my current job. An excellent read, I can definitely recommend this book.
Profile Image for Emily.
933 reviews102 followers
June 6, 2009
Fun, informative read from someone who knows what he's talking about. He includes interesting and memorable stories to illustrate his points. He also provides enough examples and details that you feel that you have a chance of actually implementing what he suggests without belaboring it or overgeneralizing to the point of uselessness.

Particularly liked the chapters on "being a mensch" and rainmaking. He advocates a boot-strapping, "get it done" business mentality with a solid core of integrity.

Certainly a different approach than I got in most of my B-school classes. :)

For more book reviews, visit my blog, Build Enough Bookshelves.
Profile Image for Loic Banet.
2 reviews1 follower
January 3, 2017
I was quite disappointed with this book and found it empty. It's a good introduction without any particular ideas. I mean they are many challenging startups books with great ideas, from Eric Reis, Peter Thiel, Ben Horovitz.
This book is nothing but a summary of facts. The worst thing is that most of these facts are obvious or not true anymore. I mean who does a 30 pages business plan nowadays ?
In short only read this book if you want a new conversation topic at the dinner table.
Profile Image for Lynn.
238 reviews
December 24, 2013
The draw back of listening to this on audiobook as opposed to reading it in print was that I didn't do the exercises or write down ideas of things that I really thought were important ... it is hard to do when driving 65 miles per hour down the highway!

But it is my hope to re-listen to this book soon so that ideas can percolate in my head and turn into action.

This breaks the project into many points. If you are starting a business or a church group or a new hobby; you need a plan. All projects start with a dream. I want to create a world changing app for the tablet. I want to write a book.

Then bits and pieces need to come into place.

The dream needs to be made manifest in pieces -- sometimes starting is the most difficult thing so break it into manageable chunks and slowly move forward. Articulate the pieces and the more you share with trusted associates, the more you can figure out what will work. Part of this process will be pitching to important individuals who can help you. Something that may also be part of this preliminary time is writing a plan of how to proceed and what you hope to gain.

If this is a company you will need to raise capital or if you want to write a book you will have to determine how much funding you need to move forward. If you are starting a church group this may not be as important a goal. However every new endeavor needs support if it is financial or emotional. Do you have people who share your vision?

Every dream needs supporters. Every project needs a brand so that when people see the image they know exactly what to expect. Then you need to be a person of integrity who will stand by your dream and give that vision to the world in such an amazing way that your audience will think of you and your vision before all others.

This book is a great resource if you are starting to formulate a new dream or business. My recommendation would be to read it in print or eformat for listening, though very well-done, was hard to capture all the wonderfully helpful points that he had to make ... unless you have time to listen multiple times or have an eidetic memory.

Profile Image for Deogratias Rweyemamu.
44 reviews6 followers
April 9, 2017
An entrepreneur's handbook

Funny thing about this book is that I stumbled upon it. I was initially convinced to read the Lean Startup. As usual, I thought I'd read a few critical Amazon reviews. All it took was the first review, and thanks to that random guy, I've enjoyed quite a wealth a knowledge. This is not to take away anything from the Lean Startup, in fact, I admit that I'm pretty biased since I haven't read it. But compared to many entrepreneurship books I've read in the past, none of them have had nearly as much content that was ACTIONABLE.

For a guy with a background working in Silicon Valley, I had imagined most of the content wouldn't have been easily transferable. Yet, the author has managed to generalize his content so that it could relate to multiple industries. Granted, some of his recommendations focus more on product than service oriented businesses, but still useful nonethelesHe breaks down the startup journey into four blocks: conception, activation, proliferation and obligation. The topics that really hit home for me include: bootstrapping, positioning, pitching, recruitment, schmoozing, evangelism (without the religious connotations) and successful partnerships.

Throughout his narrative, he meshed a sense of humor which made the flow quite smooth. He also managed to apply great and relevant quotes throughout his chapters. He ends the book with a bang, with an awesome afterword.

My takeaway quotes: 

"The first follower is the one who transforms the lone nut into a leader."

"Socialism never took root in America because the poor see themselves not as an exploited proletariat but as temporarily embarrassed millionaires." - John Steinbeck

"You can't build a reputation on what you're going to do." - Henry Ford

"The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, but wiser people are so full of doubts." - Bertrand Russell
Profile Image for kareem.
59 reviews104 followers
August 27, 2007
original review:
http://www.reemer.com/archives/2005/0...

I first heard of Guy Kawasaki when his brilliant college graduation speech passed through my email client several years ago. His speech impressed with his practical insight, entertainment value, and conciseness. I later learned that he had evangelized the original Macintosh while at Apple, which made his book on startups a no-brainer read for me.

The Art of the Start is a quick read, and is written in Kawasaki's entertaining and informative style. It details the lessons he has learned that are relevant to people starting up new businesses, new business units, or developing new products inside an existing company.

Kawasaki covers such topics as: pitching, writing a business plan, raising capital, bootstrapping, recruiting, branding, and rainmaking, among others. I agreed with much of his high-level content--for example, the best way to build a brand is to build a good product--but this book has such good tactical information that I'm going to return this copy to the library and buy one to use as a reference.

It's highly recommended, but you don't have to trust me on that. You can read the first chapter online.
Profile Image for Ann.
147 reviews7 followers
November 12, 2019
It's useful, to an extent. The shortcomings of this book were twofold for me. One, it's centered primarily on businesses intending to seek venture funding and be The Next Google (which is by no means a universal goal), and two, many chapters lay out points of what to do without explaining how or why. I understand that it's an overview of many aspects of starting a company, but if a point is brought up, there needs to be at least a brief explanation rather than a disclaimer that it's "outside the scope of this book."

I disagree with many points here and also agree with many, so it's likely other entrepreneurial readers will find some helpful nuggets of wisdom. Guy also has a solid sense of humor that adds some enjoyable entertainment to dry topics.
Profile Image for هبه.
Author 3 books2 followers
March 2, 2015
the most beautiful stories in this book "Daniel J. Simons of the University of Illinois and Christopher F.
Chabris of Harvard University ran an interesting experiment that has
rainmaking implications. They asked students to watch a video of
two teams of players throwing basketballs to one another. The students'
task was to count how many passes one team made to their
teammates.Thirty-five seconds into the video, an actor dressed as a gorilla
entered the room the players were in, thumped his chest, and remained
in the video for another nine seconds. When asked, fifty percent
of the students did not notice the gorilla!"" Apparently, they were
attending to the assigned task of counting passes and were perceptually
blind to extraneous events.
The same phenomenon occurs in organizations: Everyone is focused
on the intended customers and intended uses, and they fail to
see flowers blossoming in unexpected ways."You should read this book as soon as possible ,cause it's a wonderful & inspiring book
Profile Image for Liz.
Author 26 books231 followers
March 31, 2015
Intelligent, straightforward practices

Kawasaki is an incredibly intelligent guy who's learned from his own practices - that includes successes AND failures, which is really the best way to learn. Entrepreneurs will learn how to get their ducks in a row before simply diving into their new business, which is the most important way to do it right. I can't wait to reread my bookmarked pages as I create my own small business. His straightforward approach avoids technical jargon, instead taking us right into the practical logistics of creating a new business and product. I really appreciated not needing a dictionary or MBA to follow along! I'll be picking up a few more of his works before the week's up for sure.
Profile Image for Herve.
93 reviews206 followers
September 21, 2011
The Art of the Start is a great book because it inspires. Guy Kawasaki, the author, does tell you how to build a convincing vision, a convincing pitch. It is not about writing a 40-page business plan. It is about the “value of making meaning” which may induce making money. The book is clear, simple and once you have read it, you will not see things the same way… go, run and buy it!

A brief quote from the book which illustrates why start-ups are important.

“Innovation often originates outside existing organizations, in part because successful organizations acquire a commitment to the status quo and a resistance to ideas that might change it” - Nathan Rosenberg.
Profile Image for Sandeep Mallya.
5 reviews57 followers
April 17, 2019
Being a fan of Guy Kawasaki and his work, I was expecting this book to offer practical advice and wisdom that would help me launch and thrive in my entrepreneurial pursuit. Sadly, Kawasaki wastes a lot of time "stating the obvious" in this book and when he does offer tips, they are mostly outdated.

Having said that, there are a couple of chapters that I found useful and I'd like to revisit them again. But if you're looking for a startup book that'll inspire you to launch a business, look elsewhere. I'd highly recommend reading Rework, The Lean Startup, and The 4-Hour Work Week.
Profile Image for Dave Charbonneau.
11 reviews4 followers
January 29, 2010
One of four books I recommend for taking ideas from mind to market. Kawasaki breaks things down into simple steps. This is the "How-To" outline to start any project; as well as how-to present the project to prospective partners, investors, or customers. Combined with the right philosophy, this book should help any project get off the ground without all the useless rhetoric.

You can see this book in action as I move projects forward at http://SelfEnterpriser.com
Profile Image for Joe Robles.
234 reviews20 followers
December 27, 2011
There's a reason this book is recommended reading for anyone thinking of starting a business! It has great ideas that even an existing company could use to help make their business better.

The book is primarily focused on tech start-ups, which makes sense, but even if you're planning on starting a brick and mortar store you can adapt the ideas to fit your business.

Definitely read whether you're planning on selling cupcakes or software.
Profile Image for Lamec Mariita.
Author 0 books19 followers
January 6, 2013
This book was funny and inspiring. It gives you tips and advices on how to launch your company or project. A very quick read that cuts to the chase and provides insight that every Entrepreneur with or without a plan should read. The book written in a style that is very entertaining, yet contains so much wisdom that it feels like you have Guy sitting beside you as mentor. It's the book you should select if you want to read one book about start ups.
Profile Image for Todd Ramsey.
1 review19 followers
March 28, 2010
There are very few books that I've read in one day. This is one of them. Simple, practical and incredibly valuable, this book is a straight forward guide to starting a company, non-profit or church – though the latter group will have to drawn some conclusions of their own, as the book is definitely targeted to those looking to create a new product or service.

I strongly recommend this book.
Profile Image for Luca Pennisi.
4 reviews
November 27, 2015
This is a really well written book. It contains many useful information on how to start a company, it's a MUST for everyone who wants to start something. Another positive note is the writing style: easy to understand and absolutely not repetitive, which is rare for these kind of books and shows that the author knows a lot about the subject.
Profile Image for Jessica.
Author 4 books10 followers
January 15, 2009
I'd heard good things about this book, but ultimately found it disappointing. Might be ideal for someone just entering the business world, but as the owner of a small design studio I found much of the advice to be useless or outdated.
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