Why businesses struggle and what to do about it

Business struggling, Stephen Barnes, Byronvale Advisors, excuses business failis 

Why businesses struggle and what to do about it

You may have great qualifications and be the best in your filed, but running a business itself is a whole different matter.

The good news is that running a business is a skill – and skills can be learned…



How to manage your business risk

Stephen Barnes Byronvale Advisors management consultant Melbourne Run Your Business Better

How to manage your business risk

In this post Stephen Barnes says “it is often the inattention paid to business risks that results in business failure”

CEO World magazine



Why Leaders Need A Veil Of Ignorance

Why Leaders Need A Veil Of Ignorance

Stephen Barnes discusses a philosophical decision making theory

‘Veil of Ignorance’ on Expert Talk at

The CEO Institute



5 Business Books I Recommend

5 Business Books

I have read dozens of business books (yes even for enjoyment) but there are a few that I go back to, refer to, and recommend to clients.


The Personal MBA – by Josh Kaufman

Josh worked in a large pharmaceutical company in sales, and while there concluded that he learned more about business from doing than from going to business school.  He became ‘aware’ and an observer of everything happening around him in business.  The book has those universal learnings in one place so you don’t need to spend thousands of dollars, and hours of time, getting a MBA.  You can get out there, implement the ideas, make more money and have more fun.


The E-Myth Revisited – Michael  E. Gerber

Michael’s bestselling book dispels business myths and commonplace assumptions.  He takes you by the hand through the whole business life-cycle and shows what makes business succeed at each stage.  This book follows the (and my) mantra that to have a successful business you need to work on the business more and in the business less. 


Eyes Wide Open – Robyn Weatherley

This book I bought for the whole Board, their C-level officers and their Board advisors of a national industry association and told them it was mandatory reading before an upcoming strategy day and Board meeting.  Eyes Wide Open is written as a friendly, honest conversation providing first-time directors with invaluable – though not often shared – inside tips and insights about board membership and company directorship.  Saying that I think a lot of seasoned directors should also get a copy and read it on their next flight to a Board meeting (one director I know read it on a flight from Sydney to Melbourne).


18 Minutes – Peter Bregman

Peter writes a column in the Harvard Business Review and this book is based on his column.  Do you get overwhelmed by the 100 and one things you need to do – all at the same time?  18 Minutes shows you how to navigate the clutter and focus on your true priorities – not only in business but in life too.


Small Business CEO – Jenny Stilwell

This book also follows my mantra that to have a successful business you need to work on the business more and in the business less.  Jenny is more eloquent than I am and discusses four different stages of the entrepreneurship journey and then discusses strategies to use, and the strategic priorities, at each stage of the journey.  The first chapter is my favorite – making the shift to CEO (from business owner)