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  • Writer's pictureSaffron Sumner

Book review: 40 Facets of starting and growing a business

Updated: Sep 19

These are quick reads, a short overview. Usually business books, sometimes not.

First up, 40 Facets of Starting and Growing a Business by Richard Sumner (FYI we're not related, haha).

This is an excellent book for a lot of basic business overviews.

You won't specifically learn in-depth about various areas, but you will find out precisely what you need to know and the next steps for the essential areas in a business.

I wish I had known many of Richard's points when launching my first business. It gives you great insight as a business beginner.

I won't cover all 40 facets, but I will give you some hints of my top few.

One of my favourite points was about business cost management.

I've let subscriptions pile up, which was costly. You need to do in-depth research to determine whether you really need something you want or are about to pay for, compare various ones and ask experts if required.

Richard has even made a basic sole trader accounts tracker, which allows you to track expenses, amongst other things.

  • Have a constant reminder of what you're spending

  • Avoid unnecessary expenses eating into your profits

  • Stay on top of your finances

Lead reminders -

How many of you have forgotten to follow up on a potential lead at some point? I'm sure a lot. Having a tracker system will stop you from losing a good customer or client.

Business plan -

As Richard says, you need one "so that you know what you are planning can work and so that you can evaluate if you are achieving what you set out to do".

I use Trello to create my business plans!

The best advice -

Richard gave advice about hiring, it was to speak to a HR professional, and I absolutely agree. Hiring staff can go wrong quickly; ensure you have the correct systems.

Support & help -

I'll say the point that resonated with me most. "Running a business is hard and isn't for everyone". A book like this can give you a little insight into running a business, everything you have to think of and whether you want to do it.

Marketing -

You need it. Don't neglect it.

Pricing -

The single most important thing you'll do. I 100% agree. If you don't have a good pricing strategy, your business will fail, and you'll burn out.

Selling -

Richard makes some excellent points about selling and are worth reading. He provides wisdom from experience, on what to do and, most importantly, what not to do.

Systems and processes -

I'm a tremendous advocate for systems and processes. Spreadsheets help you have functional systems, a place for all information and a constant tracker. Richard talks about the importance of systems and uses spreadsheets for his. You need to check out the amazing ones he has made; they will undoubtedly help your start-up business. Check his website out here.

Work-life balance -

I've saved the BEST point till last. Work-life balance. Richard was honest and said he's still trying to find real balance. He did say, though, "don't neglect anyone or anything". I love this. Yes, you have your business. But you also have a life. Don't work it away.

That's it. I told you it would be short and sweet. I recommend reading the whole book. It's worth it if you're just starting out!

Spreadsheet Solutions have been kind enough to offer our community a discount for their Prime Spreadsheets. Use TWENLEG15 for 15% off.

We have some collaborated free resources here too.


Hey, this is at the start of the journey. It would be cool if you would follow the social platforms and join the Facebook Group.

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