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Books to help the small-business entrepreneur

Here are some other books, most of them recent, some a few years old, that may prove helpful as you launch your own business: The Entrepreneur & Small Business Problem Solver, by William A. Cohen. New York: John Wiley & Sons Inc. 1983. 655 pp. $19.95.

If you can afford just one book, get this one. It is an incredibly detailed overview of how to start a business.

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It is called an Encyclopedic Reference and Guide. I can believe it. It is the size -- and the weight -- of a dictionary. It covers the legal aspects of going into business, sources of capital, buying insurance, business planning, recruiting employees -- and that's just for a start. The $19.95 price can save you hours of research time on many fine points you need to succeed in your business.

The Entrepreneurial Workbook, by Charlotte Taylor. New York: New American Library. 1983. 148 pp. $9.95. Billed as ``a step-by-step guide to starting and operating your own small business,'' the workbook covers planning, financing, marketing, and making decisions.

Case studies follow the progress of Ralph, a hairdresser starting his own shop. The book also includes work sheets that call on the reader, for example, to ``List your business goals in 5, 10, and 20 years.'' It is a good book to clarify your goals and help you plan.

How to Find and Buy Your Business in the Country, by Frank Kirkpatrick. Pownal, Vt.: Storey Communications Inc. 1985. 199 pp. $11.95. This book can be used as an overview, a workbook, and a resource guide to buying a country business. It tells how to find out the real profits of a prospective business, how to be firm with business brokers, and how to deal with the social whirl or (alternatively) the loneliness of living in the country. It also discusses how running a country business differs from running one in the city.

The book strikes a careful balance, nurturing the dream of owning a country business, but also administering a healthy dose of skepticism.

Big Profits From Small Companies, by Steven D. Popell. Mountain View, Calif.: Lomas Publishing Company. 1985. 232 pp. $19.95. Mr. Popell, a longtime consultant to small businesses, gives tips on marketing, finance, credit management, and the use of outside professionals. Written for sophisticated entrepreneurs as well as the mom-and-pop store owner, this book uses a minimum of complex terms, and explains those used.

Real Money From Home, by Valerie Bohigian. New York: New American Library. 1985. 305 pp. $8.95.

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``No more peanuts for profits,'' advocates small-business owner Valerie Bohigian, who preaches the doctrine of the ``golden niche.'' Her book is packed with case histories which illustrate how to find and hold onto your special niche, avoiding ``niche invasion.''

Business Plans That Win $$$, by Stanley R. Rich and David Gumpert. New York: Harper & Row. 1985. 220 pp. $19.95. This is not just another book on how to write business plans. A founder and past chairman of the celebrated MIT Enterprise Forum, Stanley R. Rich has listened to the business plans of countless companies seeking financing. His co-author, David Gumpert, is the small-business editor of the Harvard Business Review.

This book is a must if you are searching for venture capital. It can win not only investment dollars, but also higher profits from a better-run company.

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