An award-winning business writer dismantles the myths of entrepreneurship, replacing them with an essential story about the experience of real business owners in the modern economy.
We're often told that we're living amidst a startup boom. Typically, we think of apps built by college kids and funded by venture capital firms, which remake fortunes and economies overnight. But in reality, most new businesses are things like restaurants or hair salons. Entrepreneurs aren't all millennials -- more often, it's their parents. And those small companies are the fabric of our economy.
The Soul of an Entrepreneur is a business book of a different kind, exploring our work but also our passions and hopes. David Sax reports on the deeply personal questions of entrepreneurship: why an immigrant family risks everything to build a bakery; how a small farmer fights to manage his debt; and what it feels like to rise and fall with a business you built for yourself.
This book is the real story of entrepreneurship. It confronts both success and failure, and shows how they can change a human life. It captures the inherent freedom that entrepreneurship brings, and why it matters.
About the Author
David Sax is a writer, reporter, and speaker who specializes in business and culture. His previous book, The Revenge of Analog, was a #1 Washington Post bestseller, was selected as one of Michiko Kakutani's Top Ten books of 2016 for the New York Times, and has been translated into six languages. He is the author of Save the Deli, which won a James Beard award, and The Tastemakers. He lives in Toronto.
"Though the book understandably omits the recent appearance of the new coronavirus, Covid-19 has given it a timely relevance... We...come away with an appreciation of the daunting challenges faced by small businesses and, most poignantly, by those who supply our food."
—Wall Street Journal
"You may think business books are not for you--that's why you need to read this one. David Sax takes us on a tour of real, non-digital businesses--from beauty salons to Syrian bakeries--that is both enlightening and inspiring. If this book doesn't make you want to start a company, you probably already own one."
—AJ Jacobs, New York Times-bestselling author of The Year of Living Biblically and It's All Relative
"A necessary corrective to Silicon Valley's stranglehold on the meaning of entrepreneurship. David Sax's latest will get you fired up about the many different ways to build a meaningful life by striking out on your own." —Cal Newport, New York Times-bestselling author of Digital Minimalism and Deep Work
"David Sax looks at entrepreneurship in a whole new way,
drawing out valuable lessons for anyone who wants to lead more a passionate and
—Sheelah Kolhatkar, staff writer at The New Yorker and bestselling author of Black Edge
"The Soul of an Entrepreneur reclaims entrepreneurship for the 99.99% of businesspeople who aren't at the helm of billion-dollar corporations. David Sax writes poetically (and often humorously) about what makes these everyday entrepreneurs tick, and why tens of millions of us choose entrepreneurship over the corporate rat race."—Adam Alter, New York Times-bestselling author of Irresistible and Drunk Tank Pink
"A fascinating and humane book that changes the very meaning of entrepreneurship. Don't even think about starting a business without reading The Soul of an Entrepreneur."—Seth Stephens-Davidowitz, New York Times-bestselling author of Everybody Lies
"David Sax brilliantly zeroes in on the crucial questions we must ask ourselves--and insights we must consider--as we begin the entrepreneur's task of making something from nothing. If you wish to start a company, this book will help you act with intention and make an impact."
—Scott Belsky, founder of Behance and bestselling author of The Messy Middle