Donald F. White’s new book – “Always End with the Beginning in Mind”

Donald F. White’s new book, Always End with the Beginning in Mind: How Firms Remain Great After the Founder Exits, isn’t wholly original in what it promotes, but it’s certainly more effective in how it says it to the reader. Many people in high-ranking entrepreneurial and corporate leadership roles have a hard time making, in a slight paraphrase of Jamie Foxx, the ‘common man feel good about himself’ and in the spirit of that, ‘make the common man feel capable of achieving his level’.


After all, as White brilliantly reminds us time and time again in the pages, the high-ranking entrepreneur or CEO started off as the common man. And in many ways, retaining the profundity of being a human being first and a business professional second is proving not to be antithetical to maintaining the longevity of your business. Through dynamic, personal, and even at times deeply moving specific examples of White’s own evolution through the workplace, that of his friends, co-workers, and colleagues – sometimes against unthinkable adversity – White shows that being a true leader in your field mandates a constant sense of the juxtaposed world around you hopefully consuming your product the most. After all, how many corporate leaders can you name who don’t focus as much on how to rise to the highest echelons of power, and instead highlight the importance of knowing when to pass the baton? It’s an uncommonly generous and insightful philosophy that instantly makes Always End with the Beginning in Mind stand out amidst its peers in their respective non-fiction sub-genre.

White’s faith is also something that makes Always End stand out. He’s not apologetic about it, and shows that such a mindset coupled with the colder, crueler world of business is entirely compatible. He even makes fairly expansive and exclusive concepts understandable to the reader by way of specific, Christian examples – a particular standout being Moses and Joshua. If Moses, in the analogy presented by White, formed the ‘people’ (i.e. the business), it was Joshua who understood how to guide it to the ‘promised land’ (i.e. bring said business to a platform ensuring it lucrative, commercial appeal).

He also highlights Joshua’s awareness of the timeless concept power corrupts, and the insertion of Christian values simultaneously highlights this danger as well. After all, maintaining a belief in a higher power when you are at the top of your immediate world should serve as something of a doorstop to full-blown egomania. Few seem able to withstand this, but if we are to believe White is the same man depicted within these pages, he’s a worthy and highly successful exception. Someone who models admirable norms in their conduct both in and out of the office, therefore making obsolete the idea that good character and productivity have to be mutually exclusive.


All in all, I’d highly recommend Always End with the Beginning in Mind: How Firms Remain Great After the Founder Exits to just about anyone, in any professional walk of life. It cuts through the proverbial haze and makes its points clearly and succinctly. Amen to that!

Nicole Killian

Avatar photo

About Author /

Nicole loves to go cross country skiing, swimming, reading and critiquing books, listening and critiquing music, some culinary arts, pottery, spending time with my daughter, cheesy horror films.

Start typing and press Enter to search