Jump-start your career with a personal business model

In columns past, Get Rich Slowly has showed you how to improve your financial situation by thinking of yourself as a business. In short, the lessons of business often apply to personal life. I recently discovered this while editing a book about business models that turned into an international bestseller. (Who knew business models could be so popular?) The lesson I learned — that business model thinking can apply to individuals as well as to organizations — could help you jump-start your career.

The term “business model” may seem like jargon used by high-priced consultants and business-school professors. That's too bad, because understanding and analyzing business models remains a rare and valuable skill — yet one anybody can learn.

What does “business model” mean, anyhow? There's little agreement on a precise definition, but two common explanations are “a blueprint for a business” and “how a firm makes money.” These definitions are general and don't mean exactly the same thing. Still, both suggest that business models play a key role in business success.

Why is this im

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