“The ABC of Small Business Management” is written by Paul D. Tiffany and Jennifer Bass. It was originally published in 1990 and revised in 2021. Tiffany and Bass provide an excellent overview of small business management, offering both theory and practical instruction on a variety of management topics. “The ABC of Small Business Management” is well organized, and the authors clearly present their philosophy and practical application of management principles. The book is comprehensive and covers many areas, but especially the three critical steps required to turn concepts into reality: Planning, Building, and Managing.
“The ABC of Small Business Management” provides a unique take on small business management and a different perspective for teaching. Tiffany and Bass take the typical large corporation and make it small. Through a detailed sociological approach that identifies the characteristics of small businesses, they show how concepts of organization and finances have changed over time, while emphasizing today's “small person” businessperson as the true founder and primary caregiver of the company. The authors developed this book with an objective of treating small business management just as a real practical human activity, instead of as an abstract theory.
Most of the concepts involved in the book are based on studies of organizations but also deal with some aspects of the psychological makeup of the person who owns and runs the company. For example, one chapter focuses on how employees interact psychologically with their managers. Tiffany and Bass examine several theories including; ego-preservation, groupthink, the need for status, and the power of the competent person. They also discuss how these concepts may be related to notions such as competence, social hierarchy, the qualities of leadership, teamwork, and the need for recognition.
Another major theme of the book involves learning about the concepts of time management, cost accounting, and financial accounting. These are all important concepts for running a profitable business, but what are the best methods for learning these concepts? The authors discuss the importance of taking an inventory of one's own personal learning style and preferences, both as a learner and as an owner/employee. This chapter also briefly discusses the concepts associated with planning and organizing. This is important because good planning and organizing skills are needed to run any business successfully.
Cost accounting is also a major topic in the book, since cost accounting is essential for good overall management. Cost accounting includes items that are charged to the customer and are then reimbursed to the company. In many ways, it is like a bill, but it is usually presented in a different form and presented to a different accounting department. The concepts involved in cost accounting are similar to those of cost management, but cost accounting is often more difficult to learn because of the specialized nature of it.
Financial accounting is another topic that is discussed in On Small Business Management. Financial accounting is almost identical to cost accounting, except that financial statements are not presented to a single department as being cost statements. In financial accounting, a business's income statement, balance sheet, statement of cash flows, and statement of earnings form an important part. While it is possible to learn the concepts involved in financial accounting through online courses or workshops, it is easier and more convenient to learn the concepts from this book. A good understanding of financial accounting . . . . . . is necessary to run a successful business.
Part two of the book covers marketing and provides some very practical advice on how to manage and grow a small business. It starts with an explanation of marketing jargon and terminologies, and then goes into various topics such as market definition, customer analysis, marketing plans, sales and service, customer needs and tastes, product development, pricing and promotion, research and development, and financing. Again, it is possible to learn these topics through online workshops or classes, but if you are too busy to take a course in a traditional college, this book will give you an excellent grounding in all of these important topics. The book also contains a number of case studies that illustrate each topic. Part three covers leadership and managerial topics. These include issues such as recruitment and leadership, motivating employees, managing productivity and increasing profits, setting goals and objectives, and developing and implementing policies and rules.
On Small Business Management by David Norton and Jennifer hereafter is an excellent book that takes all of the concepts covered in the first two books and creates a complete business management package. It is extremely thorough and easy to read. It will help you master the important topics of expense management, business finance, human resources, marketing, and operations. It is the perfect book for anyone who is just beginning to study business management and wants to learn more about these important topics.