Can one be “creative” and business savvy? Is the distance between “art” and “business” so great? Do you use accounting ledgers to graph bead weaving patterns? If so, The Creative Entrepreneur, by Lisa S. Beam is right up the alley. Beam uses several spiritual and psychological exercises to help the reader bridge the gap between the visual(artistic) and the logical (business) sides.
To get the most out of the book, Beam advises using a “visual journal”. The journal helps the right side(creative) see what the left side(logical) is trying to solve. Photographs of the author’s and other journals serve as illustrations and examples. (It was one of the things that kept me reading. I loved the colors! )
The exercises begin with the mandala. This is a variation of the traditional mandala–Beam names four different “pathways” that if truly explored, intersect at the balance of business and creativity.
Once the mandala is understood, the reader moves on to various tasks that are geared to develop a basic understanding of why we get blocked at certain points of our business plan. (or even why we may not have one at all) Beam explains (in general terms) the difference between “right” and “left” brain, modes of “functioning” (sensing, feeling, thinking, acting), including questions to help guide the reader in self-discovery.
If the reader fully and honestly makes the journey, the final step is called “The Art of Strategy–Thinking like a CEO”. This section takes the reader on the road to create a business plan, marketing plan, analysis, and presents some case studies.
The Creative Entrepreneur is not a thick book. It’s perfect for a desk, or to read in bed with a journal by one’s side. I haven’t finished all the assignments yet, (though I already had a business plan in place before purchasing the book).It’s certainly recommended for anyone experiencing a mental block concerning business concepts.