Michael E. Gerber (1936-) is a prominent small business consultant who applies strategies derived from business format franchising to small business development. He promotes the concept of a business as a positive adjunct to a person's life, and encourages business owners to seek a higher, more inspiring meaning beyond just making money.
The E-myth, the theme under which his books and consulting services are marketed, is the myth that small businesses are started by entrepreneurs, when in fact most are started by what Gerber terms technicians. The idea is that these technicians know the work of the business, but do not understand the business that does that work. He believes that this is the ultimate root cause of most small business failure.
Gerber's management methods are highly systematic in nature, and focus on the need for the business process itself to produce results, irrespective of who is running the process. He also draws a clear distinction between the roles of entrepreneur and manager, advocating a systematic process for channeling creative entrepreneurial output through the business.