Serial entrepreneur, investor and former Civil Servant, John Lamerton, made his fortune through creating more than 60 online businesses since 2000, leading to an enviable lifestyle business with a £750,000 turnover. Lamerton self published “BIG Ideas… for Small Businesses” as a collection of the lessons and successes that have led to him coaching and mentoring hundreds of small business owners in the South West.
Lamerton said; “99% of small business owners aren’t currently living the lifestyle they want. They’re working harder than they want to, for less money than they want. They don’t enjoy their work, and they don’t get to spend quality time with their family. This book is a how-to guide for anyone who strives for that perfect work/life balance – and it’s all based on my own previous experience. I wanted to show small business owners in the South West that whilst their business may be small, they can still think big, and they can still take on the big boys. What better way to demonstrate that, than to take a self-published book, by a novice author, with next-to-no marketing budget, and take it to the bestseller list on the world’s largest bookstore?”
Lamerton started an Internet Marketing company back in the year 2000, despite not owning a computer, or knowing anything about Marketing. Even with this lack of knowledge and experience, John very quickly developed an ability to carve out highly profitable niches online, and over the last 17 years has owned more than 60 web businesses, including one that told students where to get free stuff and one that told football fans where to get the best pies. Despite all this, John describes himself as a ‘lazy entrepreneur and investor’, claiming never to work more than 20 to 25 hours per week, balancing running his “ambitious lifestyle business” from his home office whilst raising two young children together with his wife Sarah.
Big Ideas :
In all honesty this isn’t a book for me I found it a little self indulgent and wafflely (is that a real word?). There is a lot of content that doesn’t really interest me, however being an author myself I know how you feel when you get a bad review. Because quite frankly you can’t please everyone. This book is well laid out and I like the “Big Idea” boxes that pop up throughout with great bite sized tips to get you started. For me these little snippets were the most useful section of the book. It meant if you were time poor and flicking through or skimming pages the ideas box gave you the gist of whether you wanted to commit to reading that page or not. A lot of the time the “Big Idea” boxes were actionable tips too.
The first few chapters are about “magic ingredients”, the 5 Lamerton sets out are Goals, Desire. Knowledge, Environment and Action. There is some useful and insightful content here. My 2018 word of the year is ACTION as I felt like I spent too much time talking and planning last year and not enough time taking specific action. The goal planning looks at breaking this area down into 90 days this “is long enough to achieve something pretty significant.” (Lamerton, 2017, pp.37) I can see if you hit these 90 day goals on a regular basis you can end up having a pretty awesome 2018.
There is heaps of useful information, woven in between life lessons and personal accounts from Lamerton and this is where he looses me on occasion. Great that he lost loads of weight and is super healthy now but I it kind of became a personal memoir rather than a small business guide. This book might be more suitable to someone starting or in the early stages of a small business.
What did Lemur Linkup think? :
As usual I handed the book around my networking group because it’s good to get other people’s opinions.
Samantha Prewett Photography : I really enjoyed the section on goal setting as it’s something I think about a lot in order to grow my business. The layout of 90 days goals and then setting 3 big goals for the next 3 months made sense to me. I like this approach rather than setting a long year goal which we forget about and don’t achieve. Whereas shorter timed goals give me something to strive towards. John also suggests less SMART goals and rather looking at 1. exactly what and 2. exactly when. He also speaks a lot of sense about how the “environment” is a magic ingredient. It is really important who you hang out with as they really do influence you.
“Big Ideas…. For Small Businesses : Simple, Practical Tools and Tactics to Help Your Small Business Grow” is available to buy on Amazon, priced £5.99 for the Kindle version, and
£12.99 for the paperback.
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