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Business growth & the e-myth explained

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Here is the ‘E-Myth’ Explained

After 20 years in business, we have learnt ‘there is always more to learn’.

Typically, when entrepreneurs and business owners are asked why they enter business responses include:

  1. ‘I am good at what I do” (earn more money based on skill set & experience)
  2. ‘I want to run my own race’ (greater independence & autonomy than being an employee)
  3. ‘I want work/life balance’ (belief that self-employment will provide more flexibility and personal fulfilment)

Of course, all of these reasons are valid.


The e-myth explained…

In reality, and with reference to Michael Gerber (author of The eMyth/Revisited) it becomes clear that being self-employed as a ‘technician’ on your own does not make you a successful business person – or “entrepreneur”.

This is the “e-Myth”. 

The trap of working ‘in’ your business not on it.


According to Gerber, being a successful business owner requires three main roles: Entrepreneur, Manager and Technician.

To run a successful business, a good ‘technician’ and/or ‘entrepreneur’ needs extra skills and behaviours. Creating processes/systems, organising your time and priorities and building a team are three things that successful business people need to do in order to grow and be successful long term.

Unfortunately many skills taught at our universities and trade schools do not teach how to be good at business. The primary focus is training of technical and theoretical skill.

Building a business empire

As a result many business owners seeking to grow and build a scaleable business fall prey to “the school of hard knocks”.

That is dealing with:

  1. too much work and overwhelm & potential burnout trying to do it all yourself (“I need another me!”)
  2. staffing problems – high turnover, low morale and productivity (why can’t they do it my way?))
  3. variable quality in delivery of work & increased customer complaints = reduced sales.


This frustrating situation can lead to a ‘business plateau’ (stagnation) or feeling ‘stuck’.

It can also create pressure for the business owner to return to more secure paid employment or a nostalgic wish to start again and (still!) try to “Do It all Yourself”.

It is common for business owners to adopt an ‘it’s easier if I just do it myself’ attitude and work longer hours to get through.

In reality, this creates a business bottleneck or burnout (and possible business failure) – whichever comes first!


The answer…

If you are a business owner suffering from doubts and frustrations you are not alone. We understand having experienced it ourselves – and we hear the same conversation in many client discussions and business circles.

If you are seeking to grow and scale your business – to get over the $100k or $1 million turnover, or indeed any plateau level you are facing, there is hope.

The answer is a better, more effective way to doing business. It is through continued learning and having the right people around to support you on the journey. Changing your mindset, nurturing effective work teams and building the right business culture.

And it takes time and effort. Sadly, there are no ‘quick fix’ solutions to instant business success.


At McCarthy & Co, we are certainly learning as we go along – even 20 years into building a successful accounting practice!

And there is more work to be done…


Please connect with us and share your business learnings and experiences. We are in this journey together…