David Thomas Roberts’ inspirational book Unemployable was an enjoyable read from start to finish. In an easy, conversational style, he tells you everything you need to know to start your own business, including helping you decide if you’re the type to take a risk. By “unemployable,” Roberts means a person who wants to be their own boss, work their own hours, and own their own company.
As someone who sees herself as “unemployable” I really enjoyed this book on a personal level. He nailed my character traits and the joys and challenges that I’ve found with running my own business. I found his excitement palpable as his enthusiasm and energy come across in his writing.
Roberts has been there, done that, failed and started over. He talks honestly about his first business, a business he started up when he was young – and lost. He learned from that experience and is now wildly successful. He tells his story so we can learn from his mistakes and hopefully not repeat them ourselves.
Roberts’ book is full of other helpful information. He defines the types of businesses there are (franchise, sales… etc.) and goes on to give the reader strategies to succeed, such as creating a business plan, funding, and how to make sure you have supportive people in your inner circle. He is inspirational, but also talks about the nitty-gritty aspects like finance and bookkeeping.
In one chapter, he talks about an 80-year-old man he visited with until 3 a.m. one morning, because the man was a brilliant businessman. He learned a lot from him and encourages us to look around for mentors in our own field of interest.
I like that Roberts has so many personal stories in this book. It’s almost like he’s a mentor, and is here to tell us what to do and what not to do.
There are summaries at the end of every chapter called “Lessons Learned,” which is helpful if the reader wants to look back over the chapters and re-read or take notes. I also enjoyed the inspirational quotes at the beginning of each chapter. The chapters are short, to the point, and very concise. He also has a glossary at the end of the book with some terms connected with business, such as Term Life Insurance and Return on Investment – all good things to know before branching out on your own.
My favorite term in this book is “Renegade Capitalist,” which is a person who challenges the “norms” of the typical business world, and creates a path of his or her own choosing. We’re seeing more of these “Renegade Capitalists” nowadays, with the easy Internet access that allows so many more people to telecommute or advertise from their home office. Oh – and Roberts tells you how to market your product as well.
This book is a great read for anyone who has ever considered starting his or her own business, be it a large franchise or a small, home-based eBay store. I plan to give this book to my 16-year-old son, as he is searching for what he wants to do as a career, and doesn’t see himself sitting in a cubicle from 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
I think Roberts has a lot of food for thought in this book and would benefit you if you are fully into running your own company, or just thinking about it.