Everything I Know About Business I Learned from my Mama

Tim Knox is a comedian, and he relishes his southern roots. He prides himself on his tell-it-like-it-is attitude. He also has achieved monumental success through his hard work and savvy decisions. This means that this book does have many wise tips - and a wise-guy attitude.

The book starts on a not-great note. You have to go through a long, almost diary-like section. You're told that anybody who doesn't love this book must enjoy "wallowing in their own depression". The book plays up the fun of saying nasty things about people who are overweight or not beautiful.

Plow past that and you do get some helpful advice. Failing is fine as long as you learn from it. Everyone fails a few times before finding their groove. Network at every possible opportunity you can. You never know which chance meeting will lead to a great result.

Tim doesn't pull any punches. If people are choosing not to buy your product, then you didn't make a great product at a great price. The responsibility falls on your shoulders. You have to do what you love, and love what you do. He explains that about half of all businesses fail in the first four years - and that the majority fail due to bad management, bad financial planning and bad marketing. Proper preparation can really help to ensure long term success.

Tim's book isn't just for young men. He explains that 55% of new startups are now created by women, and that there are over 10 million women-owned businesses in the US alone, creating $2.32 trillion in sales annually. Also, the most dramatic increase in new businesses is with those over the age of 65, as retirees finally have their chance to do what they've always wanted.

So while I really enjoyed some of the knowledge presented, I definitely was turned off by some of the language used. I'm all for speaking straight, ignoring fluff and recognizing our own responsibility for what we do. I don't agree that it should involve ragging on other people to put them down for things that are completely outside their control, like their race or facial structure. Yes, you can make the generous assumption that anything that bothers you here must have been meant tongue-in-cheek. But really, a book should be able to help you improve your business and odds in life without having to disparage others along the way.

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