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Business Book Reviews

Harriman House & Bright Word publishing publish several business books relating to starting up and running your own business, including their new craft focused book Turn Your Talent into a Business.

Turn your Talent Into A Business by Emma Jones

This book is aimed at helping people turn their hobby into a business and has been written in partnership with Country Living Magazine.   As well as providing advice on everything from business planning to sales and marketing the book also showcases 17 people who have successfully turned their Turn Your Talent into a Business by Emma Jonehobby into a business, including one of our customers Arianna Cadwallader from Saturday Sewing Session.

The book is really easy to follow with everything broken down in simple chunks with the text broken up with tips and case studies; there are also forms for you to complete to help guide you with your market research, and business planning.   Several of the case studies relate to sewing and craft related businesses so if that is the area you are thinking of going into that will make their advice more relevant to you.

All the basics are covered including business form, market research, where to work from, finance, funding, selling (including the online handmade marketplaces such as Etsy/Folksy/DaWanda) and marketing.  There are lots of useful web links in the book too, I found myself looking up a lot of the sites as I went through the book.

This book is ideal for beginners and covers all the basics to get you started.  It doesn’t go in depth on the subjects due to the amount of different topics that are included but the web links will enable you to get more information on the topics that interest you.

This book is published by Bright Word Publishing 


Small Business Tax Planning by Russell Cockburn

I know most people switch off at the mention of the word tax, but I specifically requested this book to review as I am trying to manage my business accounts myself, saving the cost of an accountant.  I thinSmall Business tax planningk the HMRC are probably sick of me calling asking questions every time I do a tax return so I asked to review this book in the hope that it would help.

The first chapter considers business forms & tax implications, the second chapter covers tax incentives when starting a business, ideal if you are on the verge of starting up.   The other chapters include the tax stages of a business, business tax bills, extracting money from the business and sale of the business amongst others.  The chapter breakdown and index make it easy to go straight to the relevant section if you have a specific question you want answered.  Obviously some of the subject matter does get rather complex but there are useful little boxes giving examples and breaking down calculations for you.  Also make sure you read the Appendices, there is a lot of useful information from elsewhere in the book summarised there.

Within minutes I had managed to answer several of my tax questions, proving this to be a useful reference guide.  I also found answers to many of the things I had called HMRC to ask in the past so if I had owned this book before launching my business it probably would have saved me many phone calls.  All in all this book is a useful guide for business owners.

This book is published by Harriman house 


Start-Up Smart by Robin BennettStart Up Smart Robin Bennett

This book is full of common sense advice from an entrepreneur who has set up several businesses.  It takes you through all the things you need to consider when setting up and running a business, including planning and preparation, securing investment, marketing, sales, cash flow, accounts and suppliers.

The book is split into 5 chapters – Planning for Getting Started, Making Money, Growing Sensibly, Planning for the Long Term and Reflections.   Even if your business is already up and running (like mine is) I would still recommend working through the book from the start as you will probably find things you hadn’t considered when setting up your business originally.

I found this a very easy book to read and will definitely be going back to it for further business advice.  I would recommend this book to anyone starting or building a business.

This Book is published by Harriman House 



100 Rules for Entrepreneurs by Neil Lewis

This book is anothe100 Rules for entrepreneurs by Neil Lewisr in the Harriman Business Essentials series.  Entrepreneur Neil Lewis, who has over 22 years experience in business investment, shares his top 100 entrepreneurial tips.  The tips cover topics including goal setting, staff management, negotiation, collaboration, credit control, intellectual property and debt.

All the questions are indexed at the front of the book so you can go directly to a question that interests you, or read through them from start to finish.  Each answer covers 1-4 pages and gives you a lot of useful information.  It is all set out in a very readable way, once I picked the book up I was reading for over an hour.

My only criticism would be that for me as a small business/sole trader around half the book was not relevant to me; all the questions about employing staff, managing staff, shares and share holders etc did not apply to me.  I would say it is probably more suited to someone who runs a larger business, or for someone who is about to start employing staff (there is plenty of recruitment advice.)

This book is published by Harriman house