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‘Company of One’ Book Summary

Originally a designer focussed on consulting, Paul Jarvis has written five books (including ‘Company of One’), sold digital courses, and co-founded Fathom Analytics, a privacy-focused Google Analytics Alternative.

His contrarian philosophy of purposefully staying small and questioning the conventional wisdom of building a big business empire has shaped Paul’s long, successful, and personally meaningful career. In ‘Company of One,’ Paul shares the ideas behind his choosing this alternate path in business, and more broadly, in life — a mindful approach based on designing work around life, not the other way around.

Note: ‘Company of One’ contains 13 chapters but the book summary have been trimmed down to include 11 major chapters only.

Book Summary of ‘Company of One’ by ‘Paul Jarvis’

Chapter 1: Defining a Company of One

In the fall of 2010, Tom Fishburne quit his seemingly great career as the vice president of marketing at a large consumer foods company. He wanted to draw cartoons. This turned out to be Tom’s best career move — both emotionally and, surprisingly, financially. 

He wasn’t just following his passion on a whim, nor did he become some sort of anti-capitalist hippie. He carefully planned out and executed his decision to ensure, as much as anyone could, that he would thrive.

As a child, Tom was obsessed with drawing cartoons — so much so that he would take his doctor father’s prescription pad and draw flip-books on the back. 

Then, at Harvard, while working toward his MBA, his friends prompted him to submit cartoons to the campus paper, the Harbus, which he did for the rest of the time he was at school. Still, once finished with school, he took a job in the corporate world, because it seemed like the logical next step after receiving a business degree. Tom was also part of the SITCOM demographic (Single Income Two Children Oppressive Mortgage), so he figured he needed a “stable” job. Cartooning remained a hobby, however, and he would share with coworkers his cartoons poking fun at corporate marketing — the very industry he was now part of. 

As Tom worked his corporate job and his cartoons were shared by his friends, and then by their friends, and then outside their circle, they started to garner attention. He began taking on side jobs to draw during the evenings and weekends for companies that were eager to pay him. It wasn’t until he had a safe runway of such clients lined up, and money saved up, that he pulled the trigger to leave his corporate career and start his own venture.

In the seven years since quitting, Tom has made two to three times more income as a cartoonist than when he was an executive. This didn’t happen because he grew an agency, or hired more employees, or expanded to having satellite offices around the globe. His company, Marketoon, is still just he and his wife, along with a few freelancers who work only on isolated projects. Tom and his wife work from home, in a sunny studio in their backyard in Marin County, California, where their two daughters regularly sit and draw cartoons in the afternoon with them. 

Traditionally in business, growth has always been seen as a by-product of success. But Tom doesn’t care much for how things are supposed to work. He knows the rules of business — he studied at one of the top schools in the world, then put that knowledge to work at a massive corporation. He just wasn’t interested in following those conventional rules. 

Typically, when a company does well, it hires more people, builds more infrastructure, and works at increasing its bottom line. There’s a core assumption that growth is always good, is always unlimited, and is required for success. Anything else is pushed aside as not being a top priority. If Tom had grown his company, even though he has a waiting list of clients wanting to hire him, he’d have less time to draw cartoons (as he’d be too busy managing cartoonists) and would have far less time with his family in their backyard studio. For Tom, that kind of growth wouldn’t be smart or logical. It would go against what he values in his life and his career.

Consumer culture says the same thing — that more is always better. Through advertising, we’re sold a bill of goods that requires us to love the things we buy only until a newer or bigger version is put out for sale. Bigger houses, faster cars, more stuff to pack into our closets, garages, and then, inevitably, our storage lockers. But under this hype, this fetishization of wanting more, are empty promises of happiness and fulfillment that never seem to come to fruition. Sometimes “enough” or even less is all we need, since “more” too often equates to more stress, more problems, and more responsibilities in both life and business. 

We can easily run a business with less, although to many people that seems counterintuitive. Tom doesn’t have to worry about human resources, rent for office space, salaries, or even the responsibility of managing employees. He hires outside people only when a paying project requires them, and they too have other clients and other work; they can fend for themselves when they’re not working on a job for Marketoon.

Tom has been able to create a stable, long-term business that’s small enough to handle any economic climate, resilient enough to not have to lean too heavily on a single project or client, and autonomous enough to let him build a life around his work(not the other way around). He’s been able to grow his revenue without having to also grow the trappings that typically come with it. He’s a brilliant businessperson who gets to spend every day with his family, drawing cartoons, with his daughters, for multinational companies that pay him much more than most illustrators earn. 

In short, Tom is the perfect example of a company of one. 

A Company of One, Defined

A company of one is simply a business that questions growth. A company of one resists and questions some forms of traditional growth, not on principle, but because growth isn’t always the most beneficial or financially viable move. It can be a small business owner or a small group of founders. Employees, executive leaders, board members, and corporate leaders who want to work with more autonomy and self-sufficiency can adopt the principles of a company of one as well. 

A company of one is not anti-growth, or anti-revenue, and it’s not just a one-person business either (although it certainly can be). It’s also not just working with a tech-focused or startup mind-set, although leaning on technology, automation, and the connectedness of the internet definitely makes it easier to be a company of one. A company of one questions growth first, and then resists it if there’s a better, smarter way forward. 

Next, let’s look at the four typical traits of all companies of one: resilience, autonomy, speed, and simplicity.

Resilience

Being or becoming a company of one has a lot to do with resilience: the capacity and fortitude to recover quickly from difficulties — like a changing job market, or being fired.

Resilient people possess three — absolutely learnable — characteristics.

The first trait that resilient people have is an acceptance of reality. They don’t need for things to be a certain way and don’t engage in wishful thinking.

The second characteristic of resilient people is a sense of purpose — being motivated by a sense of meaning rather than by just money.

The last trait of resilient people in a company of one is the ability to adapt when things change — because they invariably do.

Autonomy & Control

You have to be good at your skill set before you can expect to achieve autonomy from using it. Typically, you can’t acquire this mastery without putting in some time at the beginning of your career in a job that’s less autonomous, offers less control, and requires less resilience, since you’re managed by the whims of someone higher up.

But bear this in mind: achieving control over a company of one requires more than just using the core skill you are hired for. It also requires proficiency at sales, marketing, project management, and client retention. Whereas most normal corporate workers can be hyper focused on a single skill, companies of one, even within a larger business, need to be generalists who are good at several things — often all at once.

Speed 

Speed is not merely about frantically working faster. It’s about figuring out the best way to accomplish a task with new and efficient methods.

Another aspect of speed in a company of one is the ability to pivot quickly when a customer base or market changes. As a solo worker or small company, a company of one finds this much easier to do, because it has less infrastructure to cut through.

Simplicity

Complexity is often well intentioned, especially at large corporations, where, as complicated processes are added to other complicated processes and systems, accomplishing any task requires more and more work on the job and not toward finishing the task. It can be a slippery slope: one step is added to a process without increasing its complexity too much, but then, after a few years of adding steps here and there, a task that once took a handful of steps now requires sign-off by six department heads, a legal review, and a dozen or more meetings with stakeholders. 

By contrast, growth for a company of one can mean simplifying rules and processes, which frees up time to take on either more work or more clients, because tasks can be finished faster. With this goal in mind, companies of one routinely question everything they do. Is this process efficient enough? What steps can be removed and the end result will be the same or better? Is this rule helping or hindering our business?

Chapter 2: Staying Small as an End Goal

Sean D’Souza doesn’t want to grow his company. He decided that $500,000 a year of profit was all he wanted to earn and that his business shouldn’t exceed it. So that’s what Psychotactics — his consultancy that teaches other businesses the psychology of why their customers buy (or don’t buy) — earns through its website and in-person training workshops. 

Sean feels that his job as a business owner is not to endlessly increase profits, or even to defeat the competition, but instead to create better and better products and services that his customers benefit from in their lives and work. Implementation, he’s found, is the key to retaining his customers and persuading them to keep buying — that is, if they’re using what he makes, they see successes in their own business and then keep buying more from him.

Sean is only interested in reaching his target limit. This goal feels very counterintuitive to what we’re taught about business and success. Society says that business goals should focus on ever-increasing profit and that, as profit increases, so should everything else — more employees, more expenses, more growth. But like many others, Sean feels that the opposite is true — that success can be personally defined, and that while profit and sustainability are absolutely important to a business, they aren’t the only driving forces, metrics, or factors in business success. 

Sean’s goal of achieving a target profit and not exceeding it comes from shaping his business around an optimal life he wants to lead — complete with taking a three-month vacation each year with his wife and spending hours walking, cooking, and teaching and tutoring his two young nieces each day.

Sean is easily able to meet his $500,000 per year profit goal, not through marketing and promotion, but by paying close attention to his existing customer base. His audience has grown slowly and sustainably because those listeners share his work with their own audiences and contacts — his current customers gladly become his (unpaid) sales force.

Too often businesses forget about their current audience — the people who are already listening, buying, and engaging. These should be the most important people to your business — far more so than anyone you wish you were reaching. Whether your audience is ten people, a hundred people, or even a thousand people, if you’re not doing right by them, right now, nothing you do regarding growth or marketing will make a lick of difference. Make sure you’re listening to, communicating with, and helping the people who are already paying attention to you.

Sean’s Psychotactics business is a great example of a company of one finding its optimum size and staying put. He purposely keeps his business small as a long-term strategy that makes sense for maximizing his profits and his lifestyle.

Venture capital can be a quick way to infuse money into a company to help it succeed, but it’s not a requirement and it definitely comes with certain pitfalls. Because a company’s interests may not always align with the interests of its backers. Worse, investor interests may not always align with what’s best for a business’s end customers. Capital infusion can also leave a business with less control, resilience, speed, and simplicity — the main traits required for companies of one.

Economies of scale can sometimes be required for success in certain markets and for some products, but often they aren’t required and it is ego, not a strong business strategy, that is forcing growth where growth isn’t necessary.

Socrates said that envy is the ulcer of the soul, meaning that we can easily become negatively affected by the success of others. Who we are and what we actually want become overshadowed when we internally compare ourselves to others. We idolize people like Steve Jobs, Elon Musk, and Oprah and think that their path to success — creating massive empires — is our own key to happiness and career fulfillment.

We can be pleased that people like Musk or Oprah exist and thrive, while at the same time not letting their prolifically growing empires affect what we do or how we see our own businesses. We can be open to the insight that others have their own business successes but are not the sole factor in steering our own.

We don’t need an attitude of world domination and crushing it in our work in order to make a great living or even have a substantial impact. Our work can start and finish small while still being useful — focused on moving toward better instead of more.

Chapter 3: Growing a Company that Doesn’t Grow

Companies of one aren’t anti-scale; rather, they’re aware that they need to determine which areas of their business need to scale and when it makes the most sense to do so. Scale can sometimes create efficiency, and volume can increase profit margins. But without business introspection, scale and volume could be chased as vanity metrics rather than as accurate measures that determine profit. 

There’s a real difference between growth as a goal and growth as a direct result of profit from sales of a valuable product. Letting growth as a goal guide your company’s decisions can be shortsighted or result in high churn. Whereas if your decisions are guided by growth resulting from profit, you stay focused on how you can continue to make things better for your customers — with better products, better experiences, better support, and increased success for them. This is growth that stems from doing things correctly, not from making growth your top priority and just hoping you do everything right.

Chapter 4: Determining the Right Mind-Set

To succeed as a company of one, you have to have a real underlying purpose. Your why matters as an unseen but ever-present element that drives your business. Your purpose is more than just a pretty-sounding mission statement on your website; it’s how your business acts and represents itself. And it’s what your business sometimes places above even profit.

Yvon Chouinard, the founder of Patagonia, believes that much of his company’s success is due to being a “responsible” company. A shared set of values around environmental stewardship and sustainability guides how they do business, from how they hire and train employees to why they’ve had on-site day care since they started, to why they cofounded the charity 1% for the Planet. This approach may run counter to how a lot of clothing companies operate, but Patagonia’s purpose is to produce less clothing, to make it last longer, and to offset its price socially and environmentally. Because this purpose resonates with Patagonia’s audience, they’re able to charge a higher price for their responsible clothing.

Figuring out your purpose requires actual reflection on both your own desires and the audience you want to serve.

A well-integrated, shared purpose lets a company of one set its true direction, leading to easier decision-making, higher retention of team members, and greater connection to customers.

When Passion is a Problem

While purpose is based on a core set of values held by a company or even a business owner and shared with customers, passion is simply a whim based on what we think we enjoy doing. 

When you focus on solving problems or on making a difference, passion may follow, because you’re actually involved in the work you’re doing instead of just dreaming that you might be passionate about something.

Courage and passion can be great if you want to skydive or take up a hobby like playing the ukulele. But when it’s your livelihood at stake, being courageous and following your passion should take a backseat to using the skills that you can build up and validate with revenue.

This might seem like a downer of a message, but it’s not. Thankfully, you don’t have to waste time trying to figure out what you’re passionate about or hoping that one day you find the courage inside yourself to leap into your passion full-time. Passion and courage are almost impossible to control and can easily leave you feeling bad about yourself. It’s far easier to simply work at getting really good at something in demand, discovering how those skills can be applied to something else, and then testing your idea in a small way to see if it will pay.

The true cost of Opportunities

Just as growth in revenue and employees should be questioned as to whether or not it will make things better or simply bigger, we must also question the idea that a busier life, with a packed schedule, is a better life.

Opportunities are just obligations wearing an appealing mask. There might be a positive outcome to seizing them, but they always come at a cost — in terms of time, attention, or resources. No matter how hard you try, you can’t scale the amount of time in your day. And since you can’t somehow buy more hours, you need to find ways to use those hours better.

Chapter 5: Personality Matters

Personality — the authentic you that traditional business has taught you to suppress under the guise of “professionalism” — can be your biggest edge over the competition when you’re a company of one. What’s even better is that while skills and expertise can be replicated, it’s damn near impossible to replicate someone’s personality and style. Especially in a company of one, where you aren’t the largest player in your niche and probably not the cheapest, using your quirks and standing for something can be exactly how and why you gain customers’ attention.

A personality is required for your company of one, regardless of size. Your human characteristics are the way your brand speaks and behaves. For example, Harley-Davidson is a brand that connotes rebelliousness, while Snapchat is associated with being young and fresh (although calling it “young and fresh” probably means that I’m neither). If you don’t think about the personality of your business, your audience will assign one to you — because people relate to other people, and your audience wants to relate to your brand when they see it.

As a company of one, your brand should very much represent some distinct aspect of yourself, while taking into account whom you’re trying to reach.

Brand personality needs to foster a two-sided relationship — one focused on not just how your businesses can benefit or gain something from others, but on how others can benefit from having a relationship with your business.

The best marketing is never just about selling a product or service, but about taking a stand. 

These days consumers buy and make choices often based on alignment with their own values. By not focusing on infinite growth or assuming that more is better, a company of one can focus on making its products better align with the values of a smaller, more specific group of people, and then market directly to their needs and viewpoints. That way, if others outside that group hate what you do or what you stand for, it doesn’t matter — you’re not going after them as customers in the first place. Instead, you’re drawing your own niche market closer by showing them your understanding and sympathy for how they see the world. 

People can copy skills, expertise, and knowledge, which are all replicable with enough time and effort. What’s not replicable is who you truly are — your style, your personality, your sense of activism, and your unique way of finding creative solutions to complicated problems. So lean on that in your work. Sell your way of thinking as much as you would a commodity. 

Chapter 6: The One Customer

If you treat your customers like they’re your one and only customer, they’ll reciprocate that love for your brand by not only continuing to do business with you, but telling their own networks to do so as well. Instead of treating customer service like a cost or expense, you can view it as an investment in retention and acquisition, because you’re essentially building a customer sales force through your support staff.

If customer happiness is the goal of customer service, your support center can become the main source of referrals.

You don’t get referrals by just meeting the standard expectations of customer service — people rarely find it worth mentioning to others that a company did just enough to help them but nothing more. You have to do much more than that to evangelize customers if you want them to talk about your company favorably. A great example is a now-infamous story from the tech world about a customer service call to RackSpace, an enterprise-level cloud hosting provider. The call center rep heard someone in the background of a support call mention that he was hungry and wonder about ordering something. She quietly put the customer on hold, ordered a pizza to be delivered to the address she had on file, and went back to assisting the customer with his problem. Twenty minutes later, still on the phone with the customer, she heard a knock in the background and told him to go answer the door, saying, “It’s your pizza.” The pleasant unexpected experience led to not only a very happy (and full) customer but also a story that would be shared thousands of times online. This is the kind of customer service that builds reciprocity: your customer gets something unexpected and then feels the need to help your business, not only by remaining loyal but also by telling others. 

Referrals work because they build trust by proxy. A referral is credible because someone you trust is telling you that they trust a certain company or product. And since you trust the person telling you, that sense of trust is instant and immediate with the company or product as well.

The first step in treating customers empathetically is listening. The more you understand your customers — their needs, wants, motivations, and desires — the more you can feel with them and the better you can serve them.

It’s much harder to compete with bigger companies on aspects like volume, low prices, or logistics. But it’s much easier as a smaller business to compete on the personal touches — going the extra mile and treating customers like humans, not numbers. That’s a major advantage for any company of one.

Treat every agreement with a customer (or even an employee) as a legally binding contract because, on a societal level, that’s what it is. If you promise to give someone something at a certain time, then do it, and do it on time. Whether it’s a quote or a deliverable or a customer service response doesn’t matter. If you aren’t sure whether you can deliver, either say that you can’t deliver or negotiate for a longer delivery time so that you can be sure you will. Anytime you don’t keep your word you’re not just letting down one person or one business — you’re losing the opportunity to work with every single contact of that person or business, because you can be sure that they won’t ever send business your way. Or worse, they’ll tell everyone they know that you don’t keep your word.

Chapter 7: Scalable Systems

If the point of a company of one is to question growth and challenge scale, the answer might sometimes be that growth is in fact required — when it aligns with your overall purpose. When growth in profit, customers, or reach is needed, however, companies of one can look to simple and repeatable systems to facilitate scale, with no need for more employees or resources.

Marshall Haas, cofounder of Need/Want, used to think that a company needs to scale in proportion to the revenue it generates. Thus, a $100 million business needs to have at least hundreds of employees and several layers of bureaucratic managerial hierarchy. What he’s found in practice, though, is that, with fewer than ten employees, his company can grow very slowly and still increase revenue — which is currently at nearly $10 million.

Most people would assume that only tech startups or software companies could manage to scale revenue far quicker than they add employees and expenses, since their products exist in the ether of the web. But Need/Want, a physical product company that sells everything from bedding to notebooks to iPhone cases, has managed to build a big business with only a tiny team. 

Need/Want uses scalable systems and channels to increase profits. They use prepackaged software, Shopify, to run their online store, which can handle anywhere from one order a day to over a million. They stay out of big-box stores, so they don’t need a dedicated outside sales team. They don’t do trade shows, and all their marketing efforts stem from a team of three who focus entirely on online channels, like social media, paid ads, and a newsletter (all of which can increase reach without too many extra resources to manage). 

Need/Want outsources manufacturing to a factory with which they have a close relationship; it can handle anything from handfuls of orders to tens of thousands of orders in a day. The company also outsources shipping and fulfillment to a trusted partner. In other words, Need/Want is a perfect example of a company of one that utilizes scalable systems. Its direct-to-customer sales model keeps things lean and enables the company to really experiment with the best way to find and sell to new customers. 

Chapter 8: Teach Everything You Know

To stand out and build an audience as a company of one, you have to out-teach and outshare the competition, not outscale them. This approach has several positive outcomes.

The first is that creating a relationship with an audience that sees you as a teacher sets you up to be perceived as the domain expert on the subject matter.

The second benefit of out-teaching your competition is the chance to show an audience the benefits of what you’re selling. 

The third reason teaching works is that by educating new customers on how best to use your product or service and showing them how to get the most out of it or how to be the most successful with it, you also ensure that they’ll become long-term customers and tell others about their positive experience.

The final reason teaching works for a company of one is that, except for certain proprietary information — like your unexecuted ideas, business strategies, or patentable technologies — most ideas or processes don’t need to be kept under lock and key. Being transparent in almost all areas, while running your company aboveboard, can only help build trust with your customers.

Customer education is the new form of marketing. Education makes a real difference between a product that people perfunctorily buy for utilitarian reasons and a product they are truly eager to purchase because it adds real purpose to their lives. As a company of one, what you teach people about your product can and will set you apart. So, for example, if you sell mailing list software, be sure to teach your clients about the importance of email marketing. If you sell sport bras, be sure to teach customers about fitness or the science of running. If you sell luggage, teach travel hacks.

Chapter 9: Properly Utilizing Trust & Scale

Trust is a strategy that starts before a product is even developed. A trust-based company of one begins with creating something that genuinely solves a problem; then the company rigorously tests the product’s validity before honestly communicating its benefits and outcomes to customers.

There are three aspects of trust: confidence (“I believe what you say”), competence (“I believe you have the skills to do what you say”), and benevolence (“I believe you’re acting on my behalf”).

Trust is more easily established within a smaller customer base because it’s easier to stand out as an expert or to gather referrals that hold weight from other industry experts in that niche.

While it may seem counterintuitive to focus your marketing and trust-building efforts on a small and specific group of people, there are benefits to doing so. The more specific you are with who your products or services are for, the more you can build trust with that particular audience. The paradox of focusing on a niche is that the more specific you are, the easier it is to sell to that group and the more likely it is that you can charge a premium for being that focused. With that kind of focus in mind, you can get to know the specifics of your niche better, learn how to serve customers more effectively, and build a reputation for yourself in that smaller niche. 

Kurt Elster, instead of spending his time building an audience for general ecommerce consulting services, focuses entirely on Shopify store owners. By using this niche to build trust in a smaller and more specific audience, Kurt has grown his revenue eightfold and made a name for himself as an authority in Shopify consulting; he was even featured on Shopify’s website. His reputation for helping Shopify store owners has, in turn, brought him more leads, allowed him to set higher prices for his services, and helped him land speaking gigs around the world. If you had a Shopify store, whom would you trust with your business — a general ecommerce consultant or someone like Kurt who focuses only on Shopify. 

Chapter 10: Launching & Iterating in Tiny Steps

As a company of one, you need to reach profitability as quickly as possible. In determining your minimum viable profit — the point at which your business is operating in the black (we’ll call it MVPr from here on in) — keep in mind that the lower the number, the quicker you can reach it. So it’s important to scale up your timelines and focus on core features only, reduce expenses and overhead, and ensure that your business model works at a small scale first.

According to entrepreneur and author Dan Norris, you don’t learn anything until you launch.

Every minute you spend as a company of one in the ongoing development of a new product is a minute you aren’t seeing how well it solves a problem, and even worse, you aren’t making money from it or building toward your MVPr. That’s why getting a working version of your product released as quickly as possible is important: your company needs to start generating cash flow and obtaining customer feedback. 

Andrew Mason founded Groupon as a basic website where he manually typed in deals and created PDFs to email to subscribers from Apple Mail. Pebble, a smartwatch, started with just a single explainer video and a Kickstarter campaign (no actual product, even) that raised more than $20 million to fund its development; Pebble was eventually sold to FitBit. Virgin started as a single Boeing 747 flying between Gatwick, England, and Newark, New Jersey. Once these startups were up and running, they were able to build from customer feedback and make positive changes.

In much the same way, companies of one need to continually iterate on their products to keep them useful, fresh, and relevant to the market they serve. So, launch your company quickly, but then immediately start to refine your product and make it better. When you launch a first version of a product, you’re guessing at a lot of things — how it’s positioned in its market, how easy or difficult it will be to reach your target audience and get its attention, and how willing people will be to buy it and at what price. 

But the good news is that once you launch the first version, data immediately starts to pour in. How are sales going? How are the reviews? How is customer retention? Are they so excited about your product that they are telling others? You can and must use this data to further refine your product to be an even better and more useful solution to the problem you set out to solve.

Chapter 11: The Hidden Value of Relationships

Companies of one don’t growth-hack, because the true north of growth-hacking is, of course, growth. A company of one finds its true north by working toward being better, not bigger, and the way to do that is to build long-term relationships with its audience and customers. Even a company of one whose true north isn’t growth requires three types of capital.

The first is financial capital, which we learned earlier should be as small as possible to start so that profit — achieving your MVPr — happens quickly. 

The second is human capital, which is the value that you (or your small team) bring to the business or group: this value takes the form of the skills you’ll need — or your willingness to learn them — to build something and be autonomous in running it. 

The third type of capital required is social capital. Companies of one need to think of social capital like a bank account. You can only take out what you put in.

If you’re always asking people to buy your products or doing nothing but promoting your business and its products on social media, your balance will hit zero or you may even be quickly overdrawn.

Having the empathy to learn what a consumer really wants from your company of one besides your product or service — whether it’s knowledge, education, or just help — can go a long way. Empathy takes a relationship from “What can I sell you?” to “How can I truly help you?” This is the way to bank social capital: by starting a long-term and mutually beneficial relationship.

It’s important that you maintain the relationship over time, even with customers who haven’t financially supported your business in a while with a purchase.

Most businesses fail with relationships — that is, they drop off because they can’t “find the time” when the business benefit seems to disappear. This is the exact time, however, when the relationship becomes most valuable, when a customer could be considering another purchase or heavily recommending a business to their peers or their own customers. Good relationships are the foundation to a successful business, especially for companies of one.

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'Company of One' Book Summary
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'Company of One' Book Summary
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In 'Company of One,' Paul shares the ideas behind his choosing this alternate path in business, and more broadly, in life -- a mindful approach based on designing work around life, not the other way around.
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Muaaz Qadri
A Proud Computer Engineer turned Digital Marketer
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'Company of One' Book Summary
Article Name
'Company of One' Book Summary
Description
In 'Company of One,' Paul shares the ideas behind his choosing this alternate path in business, and more broadly, in life -- a mindful approach based on designing work around life, not the other way around.
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WhatIsTheBusinessModelOf
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