Your business is struggling, profits down, cash flow difficult. The business needs a turnaround, the best business turnaround books can help but don’t take too long thinking.
If your business is disappointing you and growth has stalled but you’re not at the emergency measures stage, my Getting Unstuck or Profit Improvement categories are more appropriate for you.
Stop Bleeding Cash
In a turnaround situation, the priority is to stop the bleeding away of money in profit and especially cash.
The business has a limited time to live unless something is done. It’s limited by the amount of spare cash available. Borrowers won’t be prepared to lend until they believe the business is stable or can be stabilised quickly.
You may need professional advice. If things are really bad, you may have gone past the point of no return and you will need to talk to an insolvency practitioner.
Otherwise, there are expert turnaround professionals who may be able to help but this will probably be too costly for the smaller businesses. It is worth asking and look for people who specialise in your industry. If you are worried about making next month’s payroll, you don’t have time for someone to learn your industry.
Just be aware that a professional turnaround manager will want full control or close to it since his reputation is on the line.
In the smaller businesses who can’t afford much professional support, the business owner needs to take responsibility and act by making difficult decisions. You won’t be alone if you can find someone to give you an independent perspective.
The Best Business Turnaround Books
You will only see the books I’ve rated at Four Stars (meaning good and well worth reading) and Five Stars (excellent and very highly recommended). Reviews of lower rated books appear on Amazon.co.uk but I haven’t brought the reviews across to my own website.
If you read my reviews, you’ll see I try to explain why I like them but also to identify any weaknesses. My job as a reviewer is to help you to find the most appropriate books rather than to help sell more books.
On that note, if you do decide to buy, I’d appreciate it if you could click through to Amazon on my links as (hopefully) I’ll earn a small referral commission.
Some of these books can be very expensive so, if you’re happy with a hard back or paperback book, take a look at the second hand options on Amazon. Personally I only buy if the condition is described as “As New” or “Very Good” unless I’m really keen and forced to drop down to “Good”.
My Five Star Business Turnaround Books
I want to bring these books in particular to your attention although these and the four star books are listed further down the page.
Hope Won’t Pay the Wages: How to deal with the personal impact of a struggling business by Andrew R Miller
This is the first book I’ve seen that looks at what it’s like for the business owner to be in the middle of a crisis for a business as distinct from what to do IN the business.
Turning a Business Around: How to Spot the Warning Signs and Ensure a Business Stays Healthy by Mark Blayney
A book that explains how businesses get into the difficult situation and what to do to get out of it. This is very much written to business owners rather than turnaround professionals.
The Goal: A Process of Ongoing Improvement by Eliyahu Goldratt & Jeff Cox
A book that tells the fictional story of a troubled manufacturing plant in the USA given weeks to turn it self around or face closure. It was saved by introducing ideas based on the Theory of Constraints.
My Four Star Business Turnaround Books
Face It & Fix It: How to Avoid Disaster and Turn Around Your Small Business by Mac Attram
The Bankruptcy Alternative: Close Your Business Your Way, Without Bankruptcy. Save Time, Save Money, Save Your Sanity! by Bruce Bowler
The Business Doctor: How to Turn Your Headache Business Into a Debt-Free Money Machine by Arnold Goldstein
PACE: A Small Business Owner’s Guide to Complete Cash Flow Clarity by Jesse Mecham
Business Turnaround: How to do it: A guide for advisers and managers by Henry Moore – I felt this book was written more for turnaround advisors rather than business owners who need to turnaround the business. Still useful.
Turnaround Guidelines for Businesses in Decline or Distress by Hendrik S. Palm
The Turnaround Experience: Saving Troubled Companies by Thomas F Schopflocher
Turn Around Your Business by 5 PM by Maurice Stein
Is Your Business Worth Saving?: A Step-by-Step Guide to Rescuing Your Business and Your Sanity by Stacy Tuschl
Other Categories of Business Books That May Interest You
Business Planning – Business Strategy – Differentiation Strategy –Finance – Getting Unstuck – Inner Game – KPI & Performance Measurement – Leading Your Team – Marketing –Pricing – Profit Improvement – Project Management – Recession – Retail Business – Theory Of Constraints –
Paul Simister is a business coach who helps business owners who are stuck, get unstuck. If your business is based in the UK, you can have a free Business SOS consultation with me to help you get unstuck.