It might have seemed like a dream career to many, and it was something that I dreamt about as a kid, but professional football can be a cruel career at times, and I had been on the wrong end of 1 to many cut throat decisions that had left me despising the industry and wanting to take control of my own life. So here I am, 3 years later with my own business in an industry that I am passionate about, helping people better their lives through physical exercise and nutrition.
I have no experience in business, I have 10 GCSE’s, no A levels, no degree, I haven’t even had a ‘proper’ job. All my life I have kicked a ball and got paid to do so. My main credentials though are hard work, passion and have optimism in abundance. However, that being said, I still had to think long and hard about waving goodbye to an easy salary in the prime of my career to start something completely from scratch. It was with the help of these books that made the process clearer for me….
- Fuck it. By John Parkin. This was the first book I read to begin the process. John Parkin lives and breathes the philosophy of ‘Fuck it, do what you love’. An attitude that says life is to short to do things you don’t enjoy and gives you a step by step method of how to create your passions into an income.
- Rich Dad, Poor Dad. By Robert T Kiyosaki. This is a great story about Roberts upbringing. His father was a well educated lecturer and teacher and his best friends father was a school drop out who owned a chain of convenience stores. His story tells the lessons he learnt from both and how you can implement them to make the decision to starting your own business.
- Start with Why. By Simon Sinek. This book explains the difference between companies that dominate their respected fields (Apple) against companies that try to keep up (Microsoft). His message is that people don’t buy what you do, they buy why you do it. This is a message that’s stuck with me throughout. Everything you do should have a reason why (And if the reason is to make money, then you will never make money).
- Zero to One. By Peter Thiel. This book shows you that copying what others are doing will get you know where, that you must create something unique to go from 0 – 1. To beat your competitiors, you must find a field that has no competitors. Now, we have opened a gym… There are nearly 7,000 gyms in the UK. But, we have never ever looked at another gym in this area to see what they are doing, how many members they have, what classes they run, times they open etc. We couldn’t care less. All we care about is creating the best gym possible at FitLife and try to make it as unique as possible, without worrying about anyone else.
- Business for punks. By James Watt. James Watt is co founder of BrewDog, a craft beer company. He not only tells the story of how they went from brewing beer in a shed to being the worlds largest craft beer brewery but also gives an insightful look into how to run a modern day business. Gone are the days of number crunching business plans and now it’s about creating a cult around your business.
These 5 books are how I gained just enough to get by without a business degree or further education. So if you, like I, are looking to get out on your own 2 feet and creating something you can be proud of… Start with these books. Read them in order and take the plunge.
We have all of these books on our table in reception. if you would like to borrow them then just ask 🙂
Enjoy the ride.