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Low Risk, High Reward

Low Risk, High Reward

Starting and Growing Your Own Business with Minimal Risk

  • reading group guide
Contrary to popular belief, most entrepreneurs don't like risk. While they are not afraid to take chances, the most successful entrepreneurs do what they can to anticipate, minimize, and offset risk at every opportunity, insists Bob Reiss, who in his own flourishing entrepreneurial career has managed to turn risk reduction into a science. Now this successful self-starter, whose exploits have been featured in The Wall Street Journal and have become case studies for Harvard Business School classes, shares the lessons of a lifetime.
By following his own prescription for managing risk, and using real-life success stories from experienced entrepreneurs, Reiss covers every obstacle the entrepreneur is likely to encounter. Where do ideas come from and how do you get started? Where can you find money and expert advice? How do you hire the best people and build credibility? How do you get orders and reorders? How do you develop and introduce successful products? Should you go public? Through every step in the process, Reiss emphasizes how risk can be anticipated, managed, and significantly reduced.
Full of practical suggestions and insights, this easy-to-read book is an indispensable guide for anyone thinking about starting a business and particularly for those would-be entrepreneurs without experience or much capital. It is equally valuable to entrepreneurs looking for ways to make their businesses more successful.
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  • Free Press | 
  • 336 pages | 
  • ISBN 9780743203364 | 
  • February 2001
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Read an Excerpt


This is a book for people interested in entrepreneurship.

But that's not specific enough. If you look at the magazine stands, or tune in to CNBC, or visit either your local neighborhood bookstore or your favorite business-related Web site, everybody is interested in entrepreneurship.

So, let me be more specific. This is a book for people who want to start or buy a business and who want to run that business in a way that generates relatively high rewards with relatively low risks. It's a book for people who already own a small business, and want to push that business up to the next level of success. To some... see more

Reading Group Guide

Discussion Questions
  1. It is said that for large corporations to effectively compete in the future, they must find a way to establish an entrepreneurial environment in their company. In Chapter 1 (pg. 11) a set of 10 attributes and 4 skills are set forth as characteristics of successful entrepreneurs. Do you agree with these? Can you think of others? Are these attributes and skills innate, or can they be acquired?
  2. Can you think of concrete action-oriented ideas for a person to employ to build trust? Do you agree with the 35 that are put forth on pages 23 and 24 and can you add to this list?
  3. How important do you think creativity is to your company's future? What can you do and avoid doing to maximize creativity in your company, division, and department? (pages 25-33)
  4. Should you be taking more risks? How can you minimize, reduce, share, stage, or avoid risks while still moving forward? (Chapter 3)
  5. What criteria do you employ in pricing your products or services? What are the critical points on the pricing check list (pages 159-161) and what new ones can you add? What people are involved in pricing?
  6. Do your company and employees support the sales function adequately? Are the sales people fully understood, trained, rewarded, and appreciated? Do you understand why your customers buy? (Chapter 8)
  7. What is your personal definition of success? Is personal and business success separate? Should they be? (Chapter 10)
  8. What is th
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About the Author

Bob Reiss
Photo Credit:

Bob Reiss

R. Scott Reiss lives in New York. The film rights to Black Monday have been optioned by Paramount Pictures.




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