Never Get A Real Job by Scott Gerber Review

By Kyle Milligan / November 21, 2016

When I picked up Never Get A Real Job by Scott Gerber for the first time in years I realized where much of my entrepreneurial mindset came from. Halfway through the first chapter, I discovered that some of my thoughts about “real jobs” were sort of borrowed from the teachings in this book.

“Paychecks come and go; but wasted time is gone forever.”

As I read over the charged language, I was reminded of when I first bought Never Get A Real Job. It was 2013, I was wearing grey clothes, sitting in my grey cube, working in an expansive grey office at a CPA firm. I would get slammed drunk on Sundays because I dreaded my Mondays so much. Something wasn’t right. This wasn’t the happy ending after college that I was promised.

I bought Never Get A Real Job and became excited about the idea of leaving my “real job” and pursuing lofty, ambitious dreams. I finally decided that there would never be a “perfect time” and left my full-time job on February 16, 2016, and I haven’t looked back.

Never Get A Real Job by Scott Gerber ReviewPrice and Reviews

Never Get A Real Job Part 1: The Breakdown

Never Get A Real Job isn’t an empty, sappy, you-can-do-it sort of book. It is quite the opposite, really. Scott Gerber actually spends the first 38 pages telling you how much you suck. And I think it’s pretty awesome. I saw some reviews on amazon claiming Gerber is arrogant, but I think to break through the thick veil that society places over our faces, you have to hear some harsh, hard-hitting truths. And then you must accept them.

Gerber starts the book telling you that you have probably spent your entire life building wealth for the man and working toward a false sense of security. Those a hard things to hear for the first time. Then he reminds you of your current status in life, which based on studies cited by Gerber, is most likely average, underemployed, and disgruntled.

“Yes, you’re one in a billion–and not in that egotistical way you’re thinking.”

Gerber indeed utilizes cocky language while he gives us a strong dose of reality, but I like it. Love it, actually. Gerber’s creative one-liners keep dry subject matter from ever becoming stale.

Chapter 1 is titled, “Everyone poops. Yours isn’t special,” and in this chapter he boldly asserts that his generation, Gen Y, is a bunch of coddled wussies. A trophy generation, told by their parents every day as they grew up that they were special and could do anything they wanted. Then when they graduated college, they became unemployed, self-important whiners. Sure, he sounds arrogant, and you could be mad about it, I guess. But I like it.

Never Get A Real Job Part 2: Building A Foundation

Part 1 of Never Get A Real Job was mainly an attitude adjustment. Gerber transitions from “mindset” into “practicality” in Part 2. In this section, Gerber tries to help you undo problematic behaviors that preclude you from firing your boss.

Never Get A Real Job by Scott Gerber Review Building a foundation

Gerber not-so-gently hints that you probably do a poor job managing your expenses, then lists 8 free tools to help you get on top of that. The most important tool of the 8 is Mint is a website that lets you link bank accounts and loan accounts to help you manage your personal finances. It’s a really awesome (and free) resource.

“Unoriginal is profitable”

Another lesson I enjoyed was when Gerber explained that you don’t have to come up with a unique product to be successful. Oftentimes, an “original” idea is a combination of old, already working ideas piled on top of each other that can over-complicate things. Gerber recommends you avoid trying to be unique because it causes you to complicate a simple venture in the name of being “original.”

“You may believe that your idea is as simplified as it can get but I assure you, you’re totally off base”

Never Get a Real Job suggests that when starting a business, you should start at your core competency and build from there. One of the reasons I love this so much is it goes exactly hand in hand with the theme of one of my favorite books of ALL TIME: The ONE Thing by Gary Keller, which teaches us that when we over-complicate things and spin too many plates, we fumble them all.

I wrote about How to Achieve Your Goals using The ONE Thing by Gary Keller here.

To illustrate, Gerber picks apart an idea for a “secret sauce” burger restaurant and breaks it down to its core competency: burgers with secret sauce. No need for glossy menus, professional kitchen equipment, or retrofitting a brick and mortar building. You can create and deliver your product with a moped and grill. Just get your product to your customers anyway possible. “Keep it simple, stupid.” I love it.

The One Paragraph Start-Up Plan

Chapter 5 is basically one, long business-plan roast. And boy, Gerber really lets traditional business plans have it.

For eight and a half pages Gerber rehashes his own experiences with lengthy business plans, calls out people who sell business plans, chastises people who think anyone will care about their business plans, and drops one-liner after one-liner mocking anyone who thinks their beautifully formatted, professional-looking plan will make any difference in their start-up whatsoever.

Before you get offended: Gerber doesn’t say throw out business plans, but instead, don’t let writing business plans occupy more time than performing your company’s service or building your company’s product. Gerber feels so strongly about business plans because on one of his failed ventures, he wasted time crafting a 94-page business plan. He simply wants the reader to avoid falling victim to the marketing and hype that “experts” create while trying to sell their business-plan software and classes.

“Do you feel the need to surround yourself with colorful graphs and pretty charts? Then steal a kindergartner’s artwork and put it on your refrigerator.”

Gerber asserts traditional business plans encourage you to guess too much about things you can’t know for people who don’t care. As an alternative, Gerber suggests your business plan is just for your use, and encourages you to simplify your business down to one paragraph. He provides 8 questions to answer in one or two sentences and that’s it–your business plan.

This is a great idea. In fact, this is such a powerful point in the book I gave the one paragraph start-up plan its own post here: How to write a startup business plan step by step.

Never Get A Real Job Part III: From The Ground Up

In part 3, Gerber expands and adds even more practicality to his coaching. He freely shares his mistakes and follies (often in easy-to-digest list format) from his own ventures.

Lots of Lists

Never Get A Real Job Scott Gerber practical advice lists

As the book progresses, Gerber drops tons and tons of practical tips in cutaway boxes and checklists.

  • Ten ways to avoid quitting or failure in your first three months
  • Gage the potential of every conversation
  • Schedule your own power routine
  • Twelve productivity boosters to help save you time and to help get you organized
  • Three steps to bite-size your tasks and objectives
  • Nine resources for young entrepreneurs
  • Twenty-five mentors you should be following on Twitter

These are just examples from chapter 7!

Going Virtual, Pinching Pennies, Outsourcing

Chapter 8 is titled “Shoe strapping (because the boot is too damn expensive)”. Finance is sort of a personal subject for me: a lot of people just don’t understand money. With my background in accounting, I find it both frustrating and fascinating how financially illiterate the average person is. It’s mind bottling! (Movie reference, can you guess it?)

Gerber gets down to details of how to squeeze every penny of value out of everything you can, while going as virtual as possible. Virtual address, virtual office, virtual phone numbers, virtual team, all virtual. He also provides more checklists, resources and examples to help guide you.

Never get a real job scott gerber review outsource outsourcing

Outsourcing isn’t a new-age idea. Harvesting cheap labor has been around since…forever. Many people use to get all sorts of stuff done for cheap. I’ve both hired people and worked on Fiverr before. Still, Gerber delivers specific resources as well as practical examples from his own life, bringing unique value to this section.

“Figure out what tasks are necessary to your business, but not necessary for you to handle personally.”

Gerber also gives thoughtful suggestions for how to barter for, instead of buy, things you need, as well as how to partner with compatible like-minded businesses.

Sales and Marketing

The end of Part 3 in Never Get A Real Job winds down with awesome tips for both sales and marketing. Again, Gerber uses tons of easy-to-follow lists for what to do and additional resources to consult.

I love sales. I love reading about sales tactics and strategies. I suck at marketing. No worries, though. In Chapter 10, “Facebook Isn’t A Marketing Strategy,” Gerber has lists that I highlighted this time around that I plan to implement in my marketing efforts going forward.

Final Thoughts On Never Get A Real Job

Never Get A Real Job by Scott Gerber Review
I’m glad I scooped this book up a second time and read it again. Never Get A Real Job is one of the first books I ever read that expanded my mind outside of the “go to school, get good grades, get a good job, retire” narrative. I’m grateful to Scott Gerber for creating it, and for using the no BS, tough-love language within to leave a permanent impact on my life.

Buy on Amazon

P.S. If you pick up Never Get A Real Job, let me know on Twitter! I want to hear what you thought!

Review Date
Reviewed Item
Never Get A Real Job by Scott Gerber
Author Rating
About the author

Kyle Milligan

I'm Kyle Milligan. I really enjoy writing. I wrote a couple novels (The Hang-Ups and Hangovers series) and now I blog frequently on a bunch of different websites. I also enjoy lifting heavy things and and writing about it.

Leave a comment: