Building a Business that Scales with Your Lifestyle
About Big Enough
An eye-opening antidote to the endless-growth mindset, Big Enough offers an alternative path to career success
In this illuminating book, entrepreneur Lee LeFever gives an inside view of building a scalable, product-focused business—while never compromising on quality of life. Lee and his wife, Sachi, responded to the promise of the internet by building a million-dollar business, Common Craft, that was small enough to pivot and innovate. Lee takes you through the multiple business models they pursued—models that were formerly the domain of big business: marketplace, digital product licensing, subscription services, distribution partnerships, and more. Through it all, they retained the freedom to work from home, and go camping any day of the week.
Like Paul Jarvis in Company of One, Lee outlines exactly how he and Sachi did it, and offers his best tips for how you, too, can build a lightweight business that supports a life you love. A must-read for anyone interested in entrepreneurship, business strategy, and e-commerce, Big Enough arms you with insights into how technology and innovation are changing the face of business—and how the science of happiness and the pursuit of values can help redefine what it means to be successful in business.
Big Enough Stickers
Soon these stickers will be used for a pre-order campaign. If you buy a copy of Big Enough before it’s released and send me the receipt, I’ll send you a pack of these three stickers. Sign up to be notified about pre-orders.
11 Principles of Big Enough
Big Enough tells a story that evolved over a decade and shares the lessons we learned through experience. Below, I’ve shared short summaries of those lessons in the form of Big Enough Principles.
1. Businesses are projections of people. Who are you? What makes you happy? Your values are a powerful guide in considering what kind of business will fit best into your life.
2. Every business model comes with trade-offs and risks. Learn the difference between product and service businesses, keep your options open, and be ready to evolve so you don’t get trapped.
3. Good and bad luck happens to everyone. The difference is what we do with it. When good luck shines on you, be prepared to take advantage. When bad luck falls in your lap, be prepared to weather it.
4. Quick income can trap you in a business model. Before it does, be sure you understand the reality of running that business.
5. Shareholder value can mean multiple things. Once a company is profitable, it’s possible to focus on producing other kinds of value.
6. Ask “What if it works?” when evaluating opportunities. The answer to this question can reveal how a company might change over time.
7. Build constraints into your business design. This will help keep you focused and ensure that the values you’re working toward stay front and center.
8. Sacrifice is inevitable. To accomplish your goals, you must be prepared to let go of ideas and dreams so that others may prosper.
9. Get your personal spending under control. When paying for your lifestyle and assets depends on the success of your business, you become trapped.
10. Failure is necessary and productive. Learn to accept when a business idea has run its course and use it to make room for new ideas.
11. Let go of traditional ideas regarding success, power, and respectability in business. Ignore what other people think. There are no rules. You have the ability to define what matters to you.
Lee LeFever is the co-founder of Common Craft and author of The Art of Explanation. Since 2007, Common Craft has won numerous awards, created explanations for the world’s most respected brands and created explainer videos that have earned over 50 million online video views.
Today, Common Craft produces educational guides, ready-made videos and visuals that are used by educators in over 50 countries. Lee and his wife Sachi are Common Craft’s only employees. More.
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