Every business, small or large, needs a strategy. It guides you on how to get from where you are today to where you want to be tomorrow.
But strategy can often seem overly complex, the preserve of business school academics or sharp suited consultants.
Yet the basics of strategy are quite straightforward – and few. They are these: understanding the market, creating a competitive advantage and managing the risk. This is strategy kept plain and simple.
This book is unashamedly written for the small businessperson or start-up entrepreneur. It strives to keep both concepts and language as simple as possible. It is designed to be readable in one plane or train journey.
And it is full of vivid examples of how to do it, or how not to do it, from a brewery turned destination in Barcelona to a dating site having a rum affair.
Let it be your guide to profitable business growth.
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“*****! This fast-moving book gives a proven, practical approach that you can apply immediately to start a successful business or build your current business into a lean, mean profit machine.”
Brian Tracy, success guru, speaker and author of Now Build a Better Business!
“Clear, straightforward and practical guidance on how to build a business. A must-have for the SME owner or manager.”
James Courtenay, former Global Head of International Corporates, Standard Chartered Bank
“If you are a small business or start up, this is an excellent and admirably succinct guide to help you get your strategy right. Business strategy is all too often discussed in the context of big business. Vaughan Evans, on the other hand, makes it relevant to SMEs, demonstrating not only why but how to develop the right strategy to succeed.”
Anthony Karibian, founder and CEO, bOnline and founder of XLN and Euroffice
“A concise and compelling insight into strategy development, one of the key success factors in every business, large or small.”
Mike Garland, former Partner and Head of Portfolio Group, Permira Advisers LLP
"Vaughan Evans is adept at demystifying strategy and business planning. Here he distils business strategy for the SME into three steps, in a short, punchy, practical book. Ideal for the time-poor entrepreneur."
Jeff van der Eems, former Chief Executive Officer, United Biscuits
“Strategy in a nutshell, tailor-made for the small businessperson.”
James Pitt, Partner, Lexington Partners
"If you want to take your start-up or small business to the next level, you need a strategy. This can often seem complex - but not so with this compact book. Vaughan Evans does what he says on the tin - he keeps it plain and simple."
Stephen Lawrence, Chairman, Protocol Education and former Managing Director, Arthur D. Little
“Bite-sized strategy for the small businessperson – crisp, concise and readily digested on one plane journey!”
David Williamson, Managing Partner, Nova Capital Management
“Every business needs a strategy, but many entrepreneurs can’t find the time to develop one – let alone digest a formidable tome on how to do it. Vaughan Evans provides the answer: Strategy Plain and Simple keeps it, well, plain and simple – and short. Just the job!”
Merric Mercer, CEO, Hive Ltd
“A straightforward and practical framework for developing your business strategy. This book breaks down what can be a daunting task into a step by step guide that really works.”
Andrew Ferguson, Managing Director, UK Private Equity, Baird Capital
“Small business owners or managers lack one precious commodity: time. Managing the now often means tomorrow, with strategy put on the back-burner—they know it should be done, but when and how? They have no director of strategy because the business is too small—and when can they find the time to learn about strategy? Strategy Plain and Simple breaks that deadlock. Vaughan Evans replaces the heavy theory associated with strategy books with a short, sharp, three stage approach, along with vivid examples, tips and charts—and all conveyed in a lively, engaging writing style. This book is a must-read for the small businessperson. Take it off the shelf, read, apply and profit.”
Grahame Hughes, Founder and Director, Haven Power
“A most concise, practical and readable guide for those starting or growing their own business and looking to apply sound logical principles to the task of strategic planning.”
Ben Johnson, Partner, Vitruvian Partners
“I used a book by Vaughan Evans chapter by chapter to write a detailed three year business plan for my company. In this book he fleshes out the strategy chapter and provides a range of practical tools to help you understand the strengths of your business, the relative threat posed by your competitors and how to prioritise specific segments of your business. He illustrates all these with an array of lively and pertinent case studies – and all in 150 pages or so! This book is a really useful tool.”
Richard Jewell, Business Development Director, The Key
“This is a highly practical and most succinct guide to drawing up a strategy for any business. It is an enjoyable read, packed with colourful examples that bring the theory to life in a highly user-friendly manner.”
Paul Gough, Managing Partner, STAR Capital Partnership
“Vaughan Evans advocates that strategy should be kept simple – otherwise how can an entrepreneur or manager explain it convincingly to potential investors? Here he offers a straightforward, no nonsense approach that works. It is a gem of a book.”
Christine Harvey, former Director of Business Analysis and Planning, GlaxoSmithKline R&D
“This is an excellent little book for the time-short entrepreneur or manager tasked with defining a strategy for their business, one geared towards meeting the exacting demands of investors like ourselves. Invaluable.”
Bill Priestley, Chief Investment Partner, Epiris
“I have not met many entrepreneurs who actually enjoy taking out the time needed to work out a proper strategy for their business. After all, we could use that time to make some sales calls, think up some new ideas... and the list goes on. However, Vaughan Evans shows here that a sound strategy is not only essential for success but can also be a whole lot of fun – especially when it helps you raise the capital you need to start or grow your business. This highly readable pocket book will prove useful for both new and experienced entrepreneurs.”
Loxley McKenzie, Managing Director, Colordarcy Investment Limited
“Vaughan Evans’s ultra-concise, clear and accessible guide to the whats, whys and hows of strategy development will be a huge boon to time-deprived SME executives.”
Richard Kemp, Managing Partner, Sephton Capital
“If you want investment, you must have a robust strategy – one which will convince your backer that you can and will grow the business. This book shows you, simply and succinctly, how to do it.”
Jonathan Derry-Evans, Partner, Manfield Partners