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Monday, December 16, 2013 - 2013 Book Review: "The Lean Entrepreneur" by Bryant Cooper and Patrick Vlaskovits
The Lean startup methodology was coined and raised to popularity by the likes of Steve Blanks and Eric Ries (view Mac-OU INC's review of Ries' "The Lean Startup"). Mac-OU INC's Oakland University Lean Diversification program has hopped on board with Lean startup program offerings. As Mac-OU INC defines it, "don't just become Lean, startup Lean!"

Successfully launched in 2012, Mac-OU INC's Startup Lean program will be held this September. Led by industry experts, Startup Lean is designed to help startups get off on the right foot by learning how to use valuable Lean principles to be as efficient, creative and successful as possible from day one to full business maturity.

"The Lean Entrepreneur" is not meant to simply be read, as it contains detailed to-do items and blank charts to promote success. On average, only five percent of seminar attendees will utilize the information, according to Mac-OU INC Executive-in-Residence Kathryn Baker of Advicoach. Brant Cooper and Patrick Vlaskovits' checklist style challenges this number to rise.

Containing over two-dozen case studies, Cooper and Vlaskovits focus on how to segment the market, create a Value Stream, interact with customers and create experiments. Main topics of consideration include why our economy is primed for a new wave of entrepreneurship using disruptive innovation methods, real-world examples of how entrepreneurs are creating new markets and disrupting others, and how to get started creating value. "The Lean Entrepreneur" is meant as a resource applicable to all entrepreneurs, as opposed to the technology entrepreneur as has been the case traditionally.

Cooper and Vlaskovitz embrace a conversational writing style, with many quips and added interjections seemingly meant to convey warmth and ease. This approach comes across as somewhat jarring and seems misplaced due to the subject matter. However, proving the book's overall worth are the undeniable statistics. Lean startup meetups, which host startup speakers and offer mentoring, collaboration and socialization, occur regularly in 185 cities in 37 countries. More than 75,000 attendees have participated in over 750 Startup Weekend events in 325 cities in over 100 countries, where they form teams and build startups over two-day intensive workshops.

Are you planning on succeeding in the entrepreneurial community? Then a grasp on the Lean startup mindset is a must, whether that is through Eric Ries, Brant Cooper, Patrick Vlaskovits or Mac-OU INC's Startup Lean Program.