In the interview:
01:55 – Is smaller better?
03:05 – The $10 million goal
04:56 – What is the life you want?
06:56 – Defining success
10:30 – The point of realization
13:31 – When it’s hard to let go of work
16:00 – Other considerations
19:16 – Just what is enough?
22:55 – The question of staff
24:36 – It’s not to do no work
27:48 – What Paul actually does
29:52 – A setup that works
32:34 – Products versus services
34:54 – Something to take away
Design a business and lifestyle you love with James’s personal coaching
Download Some Contrarian Ideas About Growth and Success (and the PDF transcription)
James: James Schramko here. Welcome back to SuperFastBusiness.com. Today we'll be talking about business growth. And I've brought along a special guest, Paul Jarvis, who has just put together a book which will be out soon. It's in the pre-sales phase at the time of recording. The book is called Company of One: Why Staying Small is the Next Big Thing for Business
. And I'd like to welcome you, Paul.
Paul: Yeah. Thanks so much, James. It's a pleasure to chat with you today.
Paul's bookJames: We got connected by a mutual contact who thought, hey, you both got books on sort of slightly similar concepts, a little bit contrarian, somewhat counterintuitive, and you were kind enough to send me over a preview of the book, which was terrific. And I thought it'd be good to have a chat about your viewpoints and the story behind this book, how you came about wanting to put this message out to the world. And we’ll also obviously talk about what the message actually is. And I think probably to start with, let's define what Company of One is all about, because the title does imply that we're talking about a small business here. Would you like to expand upon that?
Is smaller better?
Paul: Yeah, and I think it's funny. I do really like the title but I do think that it's not a literal title, just like Tim Ferriss’s 4-Hour Workweek. He doesn't say anywhere in the book that you're only allowed to work four hours and nothing more. With Company of One, it's more the idea that smaller can be better, or staying the same size as a business can can be better than growth, sometimes.
So growth is obviously useful and beneficial, but I think only up to a certain point. And that's kind of where the title came from, where I'm not advocating that everybody run a solo business. I, myself, don't have a one-person business. It’s more than just myself that runs my company. But I think in order to consider growth and consider what is enough, if we start to look at how much we can pare back, where it still makes sense, where we're still profitable, where we're still doing well, enjoying ourselves, then I think the title really does make sense as sort of a mindset to consider when you're running your business.