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Summary

Penguin presents the audiobook edition of Company of One by Paul Jarvis, read by Sam Woolf. 

What if the real key to a richer and more fulfilling career was not to create and scale up a new business but rather to be able to work for yourself, determine your own hours and become a (highly profitable) and sustainable company of one? Suppose the better - and smarter - solution is simply to remain small? 

Company of One is a refreshing new approach centred on staying small and avoiding growth for any size business. Not as a freelancer who gets paid only on a per piece basis, and not as an entrepreneurial start-up that wants to scale up as soon as possible, but as a small business that is deliberately committed to staying that way. By staying small, you can have freedom to pursue more meaningful pleasures in life and avoid the headaches that result from dealing with employees, long meetings, or worrying about expansion. Company of One introduces this unique business strategy and explains how to make it work for you, including how to generate cash flow on an ongoing basis.

Paul Jarvis left the corporate world when he realised that working in a high-pressure, high-profile world was not his idea of success. Instead, he now works for himself out of his home and lives a much more rewarding and productive life. He no longer has to contend with an environment that constantly demands more productivity, more output and more growth. 

In Company of One, Jarvis explains how you can do the same, including planning to set up, determining desired revenues and keeping clients happy - and, of course, doing all this on your own. 

©2019 Paul Jarvis (P)2019 Penguin Books Ltd

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What listeners say about Company of One

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title is misleading

As a solo-preneur I looking forward to this but it cites the same examples as so many other 'new economy' books I have read. (e.g. Bernadette Jiwa's books, The $100 Dollar Start Up, Habit books etc) Do they all HAVE TO mention Casper Mattresses? Nothing against Casper but again? also they are NOT a company of one! So many of this author's examples are about companies who are just that, firms that employ lots of people. At the end he does talk a little about his own business but in general terms. I have already figured out a lot of stuff on my own and was looking for a book that helped guide me as I progress on my journey both with practical advice and with examples of other people who genuinely work for themselves and are looking to build on that towards a sustainable, profitable and enjoyable business experience; a real behind the scenes of what it is like physically, emotionally and financially to really be a Company of One. Very disappointing. I will return this one.

6 people found this helpful

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Good introduction to lifestyle business

While much of this references to other books that’s not necessarily a bad think, unfortunately for me I have read most of these and story was more introduction than reinforcing. Would definitely recommend to someone starting not so much for people who have read a few business books. That said the initial arguments for staying small are good and worth a read

2 people found this helpful

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Psychological Guidance

Paul Jarvis in his book presents examples of how other people started/managed a company of one and how it was done. He also talks about his own experience in this matter. With that, the book does not only feel like a simple guide 'How to..." but it gives you psychological guidance too. Vast examples and authors' comforting words can make you consider starting such a company. All I missed are so bad examples where the company of one failed andy why.

1 person found this helpful

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Great but cultural intrusions

Overall a very tight & interesting piece of writing in a sea of ra-ra self help books.

One piece that personally annoyed me is the author would, now and again, use the feminist trope of muh-white-men bad; which the narrator would translate into the most annoying "oh my god these annoying white men" voice.
It's basic sexism and relies on the worn out and disproved notion that men are somehow repressing women in a sea of big businesses instilling quotas, events, groups and policies against them. God forbid there are biological differences between the two groups.

I think this was unnecessary of an author who either believes academic feminist research or is trying to score brownie points for them - either should be pointed out.

Other than that, a good book, easily listenable - some points are obvious and laboured but you really can't fault that as the author makes clear each aspect of the concept. A lot more interesting than a lot of business / self improvement books out there! Overall, big value add.

10 people found this helpful

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Narrator Emphasizes Every Damn Thing

How little faith you have, dear narrator, in my ability to understand the point of a sentence, or paragraph.

or how you'd say it:

How Little faith You have, dear narrator, in My Ability to Understand the Point of a Sentence, Or Paragraph.

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perfect fit

I really got a lot from this book. As a company of one it was really interesting to listen to Paul's outlook of why it isn't a bad thing to stay a company of one. It's given me some food for thought but also backed up what I probably already knew.

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One of the best business concepts

If you want to provide any service, and not only you should read this book

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great book for Solopreneurs

everyone focuses so much on growth your business and hiring as many staff as possible. This book focuses on the exact opposite - staying small and nimble.

I'm a Solopreneur, and I take 1 month trips away, take afternoons off to go sailing and generally do whatever I want.

working for yourself is supposed to offer you freedom, not enslave you worse than before, but without the health cover, paid holiday and sick pay.

this book teaches you how to achieve that.

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endless growth = bad and so is this book

this book use examples of Netflix buffer and Patagonia amongst many other large companies as examples of companies of one. there are thousands of people who work for themselves who the writer could have profiled if he could have been brothered to spend any time researching and writing this book properly.

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Covers the basics but i was expecting sth more

Struggled to finish it-eventually I gave up. A lot of statements are too obvious. And then the narrator did not work for me- a bit more energetic narrative would have been welcome. Felt at times that I was being preached...Anyhow, do not let this put you off if you are just starting your own business and need to cover some basics.

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  • Utilisateur anonyme
  • 10-10-19

Some pretty good ideas, but no financial freedom

I enjoyed this book a lot. Some ideas (from stories) was actually awesome as well as the concept of helping the customers one by one and don't focus on super growth and new customers only. My only problem was that the author din't show how to apply these strategies to achieve a financial freedom. Some of the advices actually contradict the idea of financial freedom, but I am sure that there is a way to combine these in real life.

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  • Utilisateur anonyme
  • 05-06-19

The right stuff for every free and skilled spirit

A roadmap on how to put your skills to work for you and the things you enjoy in your life and not the big or any other boss.

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  • VChungu
  • 08-02-19

Good use of my listening time

Really good job illustrating the need to map our personal and company values to business size and growth