Tucsonan Rodger Ford Writing ‘Tell-All’ for Entreprenuers

6-14-2013 12-37-58 PM Posted: Friday, June 14, 2013 12:00 am

Entrepreneur Rodger Ford, who resuscitated artificial heart maker SynCardia and before that grew the printing firm Photo-Rodger1-214x300Alphagraphics into a major force, has responded to prodding from friends and associates to write a book.

Along with New York Times best-selling author Michael E. Gerber, Ford is co-authoring a book that will feature a behind-the-scenes look at what it takes to start a business and make it succeed. The working title is Entrepreneurial Ascension.

“It’s a book built upon my experience at breaking free of the boundaries other people put on the world,” said Ford. “Great businesses aren’t built by extraordinary team members, but by ordinary team members doing extraordinary things.”

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Gerber wrote The E-Myth Revisited, a self-help book viewed by entrepreneurs around the world the “Bible” of self-help books. Looking at Ford’s list of accomplishments, you can tell he read it. In fact, when Ford was at Alphagraphics, The E-Myth Revisited was required reading for new employees.

The new book will feature Ford’s journey to the top of the entrepreneurial world, starting with Alphagraphics, which he founded in 1970 and eventually expanded to 400 locations in 20 countries. After that Ford co-founded PetsHotel, an upscale hotel for dogs and cats.

Then as CEO at SynCardia, Ford helped resuscitate the company’s artificial heart by advancing its portability and effectiveness. Ford is currently a managing partner at Anthem Equity Group.

“I learned early in my business career that being a technician who believes that knowing how to do the technical work of a business enables you to build a business that does that technical work is the single biggest liability of a business leader,” Ford said.

“The entrepreneurial vision has always come first for me,” he said. “Without a clear vision of what the business is going to accomplish when it’s done, all of the knowledge a technician or a manager can bring to it will simply lead everyone around in circles at the bottom of the company, rather than where we really needed to begin, at the top of the company, where I’ve learned the real vision lives.”

In preparation for writing the book Ford interviewed Gerber. That interview is online at http://anthemequity.com/2013/resuscitating-the-artificial-heart.

The book is due to be released in about a year.