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The $100 Startup - Chris Guillebeau

The $100 Startup

By Chris Guillebeau

  • Release Date: 2012-05-08
  • Genre: Small Business & Entrepreneurship
Score: 4
From 352 Ratings


Lead a life of adventure, meaning and purpose—and earn a good living.
“Thoughtful, funny, and compulsively readable, this guide shows how ordinary people can build solid livings, with independence and purpose, on their own terms.”—Gretchen Rubin, author of the #1 New York Times bestseller The Happiness Project
Still in his early thirties, Chris Guillebeau completed a tour of every country on earth and yet he’s never held a “real job” or earned a regular paycheck. Rather, he has a special genius for turning ideas into income, and he uses what he earns both to support his life of adventure and to give back. 
Chris identified 1,500 individuals who have built businesses earning $50,000 or more from a modest investment (in many cases, $100 or less), and focused on the 50 most intriguing case studies. In nearly all cases, people with no special skills discovered aspects of their personal passions that could be monetized, and were able to restructure their lives in ways that gave them greater freedom and fulfillment.
Here, finally, distilled into one easy-to-use guide, are the most valuable lessons from those who’ve learned how to turn what they do into a gateway to self-fulfillment. It’s all about finding the intersection between your “expertise”—even if you don’t consider it such—and what other people will pay for.  You don’t need an MBA, a business plan or even employees. All you need is a product or service that springs from what you love to do anyway, people willing to pay, and a way to get paid.
Not content to talk in generalities, Chris tells you exactly how many dollars his group of unexpected entrepreneurs required to get their projects up and running; what these individuals did in the first weeks and months to generate significant cash; some of the key mistakes they made along the way, and the crucial insights that made the business stick. Among Chris’s key principles: If you’re good at one thing, you’re probably good at something else; never teach a man to fish—sell him the fish instead; and in the battle between planning and action, action wins.
In ancient times, people who were dissatisfied with their lives dreamed of finding magic lamps, buried treasure, or streets paved with gold. Today, we know that it’s up to us to change our lives. And the best part is, if we change our own life, we can help others change theirs. This remarkable book will start you on your way.


  • Don’t Undervalue Planning

    By Businessismybusiness
    Some good tips in the book. However the author values action over planning. He then uses multiple examples of entrepreneurs who failed several times before they were successful. Perhaps some careful planning would have resulted in a successful business the first time and saved a lot of time, energy, money and stress.
  • Great Foundational Information on Start Up Business Strategies

    By Lauren Lynley
    I have found The $100 Start Up useful in practical application of entrepreneurial principles as well and motivating to hear of other entrepreneur's successes, many having started in a similar place I am working from. Highly recommend reading, highlighting, and returning to Chris's book.
  • Wish I could read it

    By Howard Dizzle
    I downloaded the book awhile back but when I open it I don't see any words😔
  • Good book

    By Will4Pressident
    easy read and inspiring .
  • Terrible

    By PastTense0311
    Terrible terrible book. Don't waste your money. Boring read of short story after short story. Horrifically awful!
  • Tons of research and education packed into an easy to read piece

    By emworral
    Chris does a great job with three things with his writing (in my opinion). He is extremely thorough and well researched. This is abundantly clear in this book even more so the AONC and Happiness. He does a great job introducing pieces of different stories and changing gears to new stories. I find this helpful if you're an ADD reader like myself. Helps keep it interesting. Lastly I think he does a great job of feeling genuine. It feels that the person writing the book genuinely wants to help his readers and others in the world. You feel good supporting a writer who cares more about others than his bank account. Definitely worth the read. I already started a quest from Happiness of Pursuit that I'm a half year into and now planning a $100 startup that I've been kicking around until I read this. Hoping to use the lessons from this book. Thanks Chris!
  • Awful, author talks too much

    By Manny Figueroa
    I wanted to read a book about the underdog and their success stories but the other keeps coming in and ruining these stories with his advice. I wish i would have bought another book.
  • Loved it!

    Amazing read and couldn't put it down! Added to my kids must read list.
  • Amazing

    By Promacamba5
    Really great book. All the case studies really help. I feel really pumped up now and ready to start my own business !
  • Great Read

    By DreBaldwin
    For any person in business or looking to start one. Lots of ideas to take with you from hundreds of real life examples