Friday, May 1, 2009

The Canadian Small Business Kit for Dummies - Book Review

I remember going to this place called Dorset when I was in Grade 6. It was our first big away trip from the parents for school. On the first day there, we got acquainted with this conservation area by playing the outdoor gym class game "Survival". Hopefully most of you played it because it's awesome. I guess we were randomly assigned characters that had been placed along an all-encompassing food chain. You could end up being anything from a worm to a large carnivore and the point was to catch the people who were below you in the food chain while avoiding those above you - tag styles.
I flip over my card and I've been assigned the role of THE SUN. The card also said something less dramatic than, but very much like, "Prey: Everyone, Predators: None". I was invincible!
The game starts and I'm just going apeshit attacking everyone I could get a hold of...I was good at this game. In this position. I'm chasing after this one girl who was like a rabbit or something and we're running full-tilt down a forested hill. She turns around to see that I'm gaining on her and as she proceeds to turn forward, she smacks into a tree at top-speed. Broken nose is the diagnosis, I felt like a worm.

So why the fuck am I airing out my guilty laundry? I'm not going to answer that but I will confess something else: I feel guilty that I spent my hard-earned dollars on this book.

I have to say that in my defense for choosing this book in the first place, I didn't realize the "for dummies" franchise chose a very literal name for themselves. This book really gets down to basics, including information I had previously considered to be common knowledge.

Also: While I certainly enjoy and appreciate a good Star Trek reference, this book has about 60 jokes riddled throughout. Allow me to share the first paragraph of the kit with you,

Starting a business: The final frontier.

Your entrepreneurial mission: To explore new products and services. To seek out new markets, new customers, and new suppliers. To boldly go into business for yourself (Page 1).

I could keep going.
I was really excited to read this book; to get a general overview of information that I need to research more and I liked that it was from a Canadian perspective. To be frank, I found the Canadian Small Business Kit for Dummies to be pretty condescending and full of tips and information that ended up being irrelevant and off-putting. The information that was useful can be found for free through the online Government of Canada Small Business Workshop.

I really wouldn't recommend this book to anyone. If you're interested in a craft business, read Craft Inc. by Meg Mateo Ilasco. I'm currently working on a hopefully not so long-winded review of this helpful gem of a book.


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