The Pumpkin Plan was an excellent book, I finished it quickly because I really enjoy Mike Michalowicz writing style, humor, and the ways he tells a story. Mike is a very talented writer and really spells out his entrepreneurial style in this book with some of his great stories. I will come right out and say I’m an avid reader of Mike’s blog, which can be found here. It’s an excellent blog on business and entrepreneurship and I encourage all of my blog readers to read it as well. In this book, Mike talks about all of the missed opportunities, mistakes, and things he’s learned from being an entrepreneur himself and running his own businesses. Additionally, I really like the fact that Mike is the type of person that will help other struggling business owners and entrepreneurs achieve success. Mike shows us common mistakes business owners and entrepreneurs make regularly and repeatedly, and how easy it can be to remedy those mistakes.
Make sure you find and plant the ideal pumpkins
In this book, Mike stresses that you should not just pick any pumpkin in the patch. However, what you should do is find the best seeds and try to grow the biggest pumpkin possible. I totally agree with this because successful businesses (both large and small) grow from the ground up. Also, I liked how Mike suggests you need to remove the smaller pumpkins on the vine in order to let your pumpkin grow. Fire your worst clients, and concentrate more on your best clients. This will only be useful to you in the long run, and create more revenue and opportunities for you in the future. Tim Ferriss illustrates this well in his book, The 4-Hour Workweek.
Each Pumpkin Requires a Good Seed
Throughout the book, Mike stresses that you need a really good seed to succeed. What Mike means by this is that you need to have a really strong idea that your potential clients will love and will want to buy from you. Mike shows us how to find these ideas, test them, and align them with your potential business which can be an invaluable part to starting a successful business. For example, lets say you wanted to start a catering business. One of the things you might want to do before starting your catering business would be to find zip code data and geotarget the areas which generate the most revenue for catering businesses. If this requires you to relocate your corporate headquarters, it’s probably in your best interests to move. Also, find your niche and what distinguishes your business from other catering businesses in the area.
While I regularly read Mike’s blog, I find that he has a lot of great business advice for all of us so I would recommend this book or his blog to anyone. However, I do think what he writes about will impact small business owners and sales professionals the most. While some may say he has rancid humor, I have to say I enjoyed it and it helps him get his point across. He says we don’t want to be “that guy” – you know – the guy who gives his whole life to his business and then is sitting on the porch looking decrepit. I very much agree with Mike’s point and have seen this happen to many of my relatives and friends, not by choice of course. Also, if you pick this book up it might give you some ideas about putting together a little passive income for yourself. I find that it’s helped me zero in on some opportunities and consulting opportunities. A very highly recommended book.