Score: 96/100 (9.6 out of 10)
The Value Equation: A Business Guide to Wealth Creation for Entrepreneurs, Leaders & Investors by Christopher Volk is a phenomenal business book with extraordinary value. Many of us are business people ourselves, so reading this was a real thrill!
Perhaps our favorite things about this book were the stories. There are stories in here about Elon Musk (Tesla), Daymond John (from Shark Tank), Warren Buffett, and Aaron Krause (Scrub Daddy). There are stories in here about companies like Disney, Pixar, Amazon, Tesla, FUBU, Berkshire Hathaway, Ford Motor Company, General Motors, Apple, and more! Volk is able to brilliantly highlight the dos and don'ts of these notable people and their businesses.
Volk is truly brilliant and likely a genius of some sort. He has a special knack for evaluating business models, something which has helped him to become a leader for numerous publicly-traded, successful businesses. He is the Executive Chairman of STORE Capital Corp and on the board of directors of Banner Health and Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation of Arizona. He is a former president, director, and CEO of multiple businesses, specializing in finance.
Volk is a self-proclaimed “finance guy,” and it clearly shows. His decades of rich and invaluable experience fill the pages of this book and have armed him with the know-how to put together his titular “value equation.”
And that's another thing we respect about this book: it deals in facts, statistics, and numbers rather than on idealism or dogma. You know what they say about numbers, right? The numbers don't lie. But Volk doesn't simply sit on the statistics and show off his formulations. Most importantly, he interprets them for his readers! And that's something we greatly appreciate.
We have encountered some brilliant and invaluable mathematical books in the past. The one that immediately comes to mind is Real-Time Earthquake Tracking and Localisation by George R. Daglish and Iurii P. Sizov. You may not remember this, but our main complaint about the book was simply that the data was presented in a very plain and dry fashion, often without explanation or interpretation. There are times in Volk's work when information and statistics are also presented in a plain and dry fashion, sometimes even in rapid-fire succession (percentages after percentages after percentages), however, at least Volk takes the time to explain and interpret the data in as coherent and interesting a way as he can.
Something else we wanted to mention is that you not only have to come prepared to understand some math, but you also need to come prepared for some jargon. That's par for the course. The author often uses acronyms like IPO (initial public offering), EMVA (equity market value added), MVA (market value added), YOM (“your own money), and OPM (“other peoples' money”). OPM (“other peoples' money”) is probably the most notable and unique of the six variables in his equation. You need to be prepared to remember what these acronyms mean, and it can be a bit of a challenge even for someone with an MBA. This is next-level stuff.
However, understanding it obviously pays, and Volk's success is proof of that.
If you want to read a truly groundbreaking business book, check this out on Amazon!