on November 13, 2015
First, full disclosure: I know and respect Cameron Herold as an evangelist for entrepreneurialism.
As someone who works with small businesses on issues of growth, I often see entrepreneurs who are so weighed down in the fires and challenges of today that it’s extremely difficult to pick their heads up and create a picture of where they want to go tomorrow. This book is a really useful tool for making that process happen, and I recommend it often.
I found four aspects of the book to be outstanding:
- the progression of the chapters: from planning your future to creating your culture to hiring, getting teams focussed through effective communications and high impact meetings, marketing and PR, measuring progress and enhancing personal productivity, the book covers many critical aspects of scaling your business.
- the practicality of the material: the book doesn’t lay out theory and leave it at that - it’s very prescriptive about how, exactly, to get things done (e.g., getting out of the office to really envision the “painted picture” of your company's future, or how to design your office to enhance employee engagement, or how to interview people and run meetings effectively or specific app’s you can use to enhance personal productivity…) This level of practicality makes the book stand out from most business books I’ve read.
- the style: it’s as if a business guru put his arm around your shoulder and said “hey - here’s how I do it”…Cameron shows us his painted picture, and talks openly about his own personal experiences, to bring his recommendations to life. That style makes the book easy to digest. It’s a good read and seldom gets bogged down in high-level prescriptions - everything is brought down to a practical, human, how-to level.
- the breadth: the book covers almost everything in the growth journey, from the big picture ( mapping out your goals) to the little practical stuff that matters (how to run effective meetings). I get the sense that Cameron has accumulated a wealth of knowledge over his decades as an entrepreneur - and this book represents an synthesis of all that information. I look at it as a Swiss Army knife for entrepreneurs - giving successful, growing companies much of what they need to know in one volume.
In terms of weak points:
- while other companies are mentioned as examples of some of his recommendations, most of his examples come from Cameron's personal history in largely franchise-related businesses (College Pro Painting, 1-800GOTJUNK). While it makes the book more personal and credible, it may leave some entrepreneurs wondering if the tools can be applied as directly to their industry or market.
- while the book does a great job of walking us through the painted picture process and how to choose goals, it spends almost no time on a crucial strategic element of any company's success - whether, and how, your customer offer is tuned to the right target market, and whether it’s compelling enough to motivate customers to buy. Some of this may be implicit in the book’s section on SWOT’s, but in general, describing how to map out strategy is not the book’s strong suit
- there’s little time spent on certain aspects of scaling a company (e.g., mastering financial statements and what they mean, how to do effective budgeting, how to design advanced incentive programs by function)
- this isn’t a book for pre-revenue start-ups. It presumes you have a business that is running and progressing - and that you need to scale it more quickly and more effectively, or to get better at how you run things.
These are mainly weaknesses of omission - but where the book does focus (e.g., how to map out your priority areas, how to communicate and focus people, how to effectively interview and hire great people, how to give great feedback, how to gear your meeting rhythm to be most effective), it excels.
This is a great book for entrepreneurs past the initial stage in their company's growth curve - who have a successful offer in the marketplace and are looking to grow and scale an organization that is moving from good to great. It doesn’t cover everything - but it covers a lot, and at a level that leaders can understand and implement - right away.
Although I’ll admit to a bias (I like and respect Cameron) I’d highly recommend it.
on November 13, 2015
Cameron Herold is well know in entrepreneur circles as the go to guy for business advice. Sadly, only a few could benefit from his experience and wisdom when it comes to growing your business. However, we now have the complete recipe to double revenue and profit in 3 years or less. This book touches many aspects of business and will sometimes seem counterintuitive, such as creating outstanding company culture by giving all employees 5 weeks of paid vacation. At first, this might sound insane, but upon reading the reason behind the gesture, you can truly comprehend the wisdom contained in this book.
Just doing the painted picture exercise is a valuable tool in itself and if the book ended there (chapter 1), I would have felt satisfied with my investment in this book. Cameron's recipe for success is clearly explained and specific steps are laid out to follow, which will guarantee growth.
If your business has flatlined, or is not lifting off, this book will be worth it's weight in gold. Start reading, start applying and starting doubling.
on January 16, 2015
Very compelling read with lots of practical, easy-to-implement work (and life) hacks to grow your business. Having had the great opportunity to hear the author speak, I'm putting many of these strategies in place and remain confident about the results. If you're looking for a book on how to improve your business using a no-nonsense approach that isn't caught up in theory, you will take much from this one.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on December 8, 2014
I read this book as part of a business book club initially three years ago and as part of a Business Mastermind group this past year. It is easy to read and the concepts are easy to follow. True to his word, Cameron does not necessarily reinvent the wheel, but he does outline some very important steps which he has seen work time and time again. Just understanding the principle alone that 25% growth added to 25% growth added to 25% growth nets 100% growth was enough to set us on a course of doubling our revenue in 3 years.
Double Double is also a book about the culture of a company and how ALL aspects of the company must work toward the shared vision of its leader. It's a book about doing the work needed, and how best to accomplish that. It also gives great examples of what to do when people and plans do not work out as expected and how to move forward. Finally, the book focuses on the entrepreneurial spirit and what it takes to be the leader in the company.
In a nutshell, if you're looking for someone to hold your hand every step of each process needed, this is not the book for you. However, if you're looking for a hands-on philosophy that is tried and true time and time again, a book which will help you understand if you're going in the right direction and can help you get there that much faster, then this IS a MUST READ book.
on December 5, 2014
Quite sincerely, this was the best business book that I have ever read. It gave me very actionable and cost effective ideas for adding value to my business immediately. I will be combing through this book a second time to ensure that I have fully implemented Cameron's advice to entrepreneurs. I am optimistic that I will be able to double the revenue of my business by following the suggestions in Cameron's book.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on May 12, 2013
I recently read Cam's book 'Double Double', which I must say I was a bit skeptical as the title boasts doubling my business in a very short period of time. I was though optimistic as I am familiar with Cam's work and I have heard him speak before.
I sat down and cranked this book out in a couple sittings, I would recommend this approach to his book as I feel the first 3/5 of the book really is one business process, an expository step by step guide to roughly 5 core focus areas: visualizing and 'painting a picture', reverse engineering, company culture, hiring, and communication.
The final 2/5 of the book were in my opinion simply some solid business insight on self-management, performance events, and a real buffet of great insight. I am a chronic highlighter/note in the margin-et/ sticky tab the interesting pages type of person. Glancing over at the book I must have roughly 50 pages tabbed and I burnt through a highlighter on this book - good sign.
Some things I really loved were:
- Cam's belief in fostering strong, meaningful culture in your company as a driver for success
- I like that his approach, as Jack Welch would say, is straight from the gut.
- I found that reading the book I really got to know Cam, I feel like his is my buddy now - like I had a great conversation with a business mentor - gave me some big nuggets to digest, made me dream a bit but also just told me what to do and how it is. Solid.
- Cam was a College Pro entrepreneur, which I was as well so it was cool to connect there.
- I feel a lot of Cam's insight was sorta like Tim Ferris except unlike my man Tim, Cam's gives you more of the how, shares how he is not super human and it took him some time to make it happen, and really seasons it with a tonne of personal stories from real businesses he has built that relate more to my situation, businesses with lots of staff.
- I like that Cam invited you to interact with him, I suppose I felt like I was part of a smaller audience (I cranked off Lencioni's 'The Advantage' just before it, great book and love love Patrick, but you feel like you are reading a book to the masses, Cam's book seemed to be written to me)
- Cam's whole section on leveraging PR was solid, turn key and I will role it out this coming week.
-I am a vision guy, Cam showed some great ways to take ideas from the drawing board to the playing field, this I liked.
- There is a bunch of other cool stuff as well, worth the read if you are at the reigns of an organization or business.
A few things that I would critique (would be awesome if Cam simply called me and elaborated :)
- I felt the last portion of the book, 50+ words of wisdom from Cam though solid, kinda scrambled my brain after a really solid step by step read. Don't get me wrong, good stuff. I think Cam should have written another book just on those points, kinda felt like this was the one book his was ever going to write so he got it all in there - If Cam expanded on each point and wrote a book #2, I would read it, and pack a second highlighter.
-I would like to sit in on a conversation between Cam and the guys who wrote ReWork and Lencioni (Death by Meetings). Cam seemed to promote the need for a lot of meetings (in his defence they are very focused meetings) but there is a lot of discussion out there around really cutting back on meetings. Would just like to be a fly on the wall or a moderator for that three way chat on the topic of meetings.
-If I had to choose one other item to poke at I would say that, and I have observed this in his speaking style, that Cam seems to really qualify himself a lot, important yes, but his content is good and it qualifies itself, I don't think he needs to qualify his credentials as much, the guy knows his stuff - I would just let it speak for itself.
If you are hovering over the 'Add to Cart' button you don't know me but if you read books from start to finish and you like to eat books with a highlighter and really look for plug and play advice - I would definitely recommend clicking the button. Not a Harvard Business Press economical survey on the rise and fall of Fanny Mae, this is a solid book built for motivated entrepreneurs that are past the honeymoon phase and just want build a quality business bound for growth.
-Leighton T Healey
Want to chat more - find me on Linkedin
on August 29, 2011
Cameron Herold knows a thing or two about growing companies... fast. But he also knows that all the growth and money in the world won't make a lick of difference unless you also have time to enjoy all the good things that come with it.
In Double Double, he comes up with real, concrete steps that will take any business to the next level and beyond. All the while, he reminds us to strike the right balance between family and work.
He's sharing steps that got him to a great place in life, a place we should all strive to get.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on June 13, 2011
I always considered a couple of books out there must reads for business. Good to Great, Rockefeller Habits, E-Myth. Cameron's book takes the best parts of each of these and has created a step by step how to book that's easy read and easy to implement. I bought one for all of my key customers and management team!
on April 17, 2011
I've had the pleasure of being at some of Cameron's speaking engagements and from the first time I heard him speak, everything was so RIGHT, it just made sense.
Know being an entrepreneur, I believe you need to take in as much of the RIGHT information as possible, especially myself being a young entrepreneur.
Cameron's Double Double really is the right information. Take this information, embrace it and REALLY use it in your business or apply it to your personal life.
Again, brilliant book Cameron. I cannot wait for the next one!
Double Double: How to Double Your Revenue and Profit in 3 Years or Less