Is it worth it? A Review of Donald Miller’s Small Business Flight School

Donald Miller Flight School Business Review Agency Boon

So you want Donald Miller’s Small Business Flight School to be the key that unlocks a new level of growth in your business. Right? But something’s holding you back. If I had to guess, it would be the price tag. It’s heftier than Don’s online courses of the past, and you’re probably worried (1) you won’t finish it or (2) it won’t move the needle.

Here’s how I know: I’m an accidental business owner. I say “accidental” because I set out to be a freelance writer and now run a full-fledged copywriting agency. I never had a plan or desire to build my own thing. Now that I have, though? It’s the best…

  • I am my own boss
  • I set my own schedule
  • I hire people I want to work with
  • I say “yes” only to projects I care about
  • I’ll pay off our mortgage this year

I hope you’ve benefited from the same things as a business owner! There’s nothing like it. And… it’s also terrifying.

There are months when I sell 10x my monthly sales goal and months when I’m lucky to sell a few coaching calls. It’s always panned out in the end, but what if one year it doesn’t? Beyond an emergency fund, what would I do if the rug was pulled out from under me? I shudder at the thought of going to an office again, wearing heels again, and (ugh!) asking my boss for time off. Those are days I never want to relive.

So (getting back to the point), I have panic-bought online courses in the past that I thought would help me feel more in control. In fact, when I had a couple of slow months last year, I bought two—both of which I didn’t finish because, well, work picked up, and they weren’t as helpful as I thought they would be. I couldn’t justify spending any more time on them. My assistant took them instead and gave me the underwhelming highlights. 

I still roll my eyes at myself that I bought them in the first place.

Everything I’ve purchased from Donald Miller is different. Now is a good time to tell you that I don’t run any old copywriting agency; we are StoryBrand writers. 

Squeeeeallll (that’s you slamming on your breaks). 

How is a review written by a StoryBrand Guide (aka Don Miller groupie) unbiased? It’s not. But honestly, it’s not for good reason. 

I’ve given $40-$50k to Don Miller over the years, and it’s resulted in 30+ times that in revenue for my business. His stuff works.

If you’re curious how I figured out his stuff works, here’s the highlight reel: 

  • I worked for a decade+ at two organizations (a university and an international development organization)
  • Both places, I was hired to do something else, but ended up spending most of my time strategizing communication plans and writing (turns out that I had a knack)
  • My bachelor’s degree is in social work and, even though I had just finished my MBA, I had one marketing class, and it taught me nothing about writing
  • I didn’t know why what I was writing was working—there was no rhyme or reason to what I was doing
  • A colleague introduced me to StoryBrand, and it seemed like the professional development I was craving
  • I attended a live workshop in Nashville (it was one of the first Don Miller and team ever hosted), and I left the room with tears in my eyes; I was so relieved to have this powerful tool in my back pocket
  • I applied the StoryBrand Marketing Framework at both the international development organization where I was working 30 hours a week and at the university where I was still contracting on the side
  • We saw a 25% increase in donations at the organization that year and a 15% increase in enrollment at the university (numbers I’d never seen before)
  • I looooooved writing even more using StoryBrand, so I took a leap, joined the first class of StoryBrand certified writers (the first time I’ve ever put money on a credit card that I didn’t know how I was going to pay back)
  • I ended up leaving my job to share StoryBrand with more businesses and organizations 

And yes, just over five years later, I’ve paid Don Miller somewhere in the range of $40-$50k for courses and certifications. And, yes, my business has earned 30+ times that. All those things I mentioned above (freedom, work I love, profits), I credit Don Miller for giving me the running start I needed.

So, do I think Small Business Flight School (or anything Don is selling) is worth it? Yep. 

Here’s what you get.

I love that Don has “skimmed the cream” off all his teachings and plugged them into one structured course that really matters. In other words, you could spend hundreds of hours reading his books, listening to his podcasts, and laboring through his other online course collection (Business Made Simple University), and you would be better for it. But you wouldn’t be getting anywhere fast.

Small Business Flight School is a hands-on, rapid-pace program for small business owners who are serious about implementing a plan to grow their business and revenue. Let’s review the basics:

Why is it called “Small Business Flight School”?

Because he’s a master of practicality, Don saw the connection between the six parts a plane needs to fly smoothly and the six elements a business needs to run smoothly. He uses that comparison to teach those six steps to us (small business owners), so we can professionalize our operations and grow our businesses.

Who is Small Business Flight School for? 

It’s for us, owners of and leaders in small businesses: the ones who want to preserve what we’ve grown (me!) and the ones who want to take their business to the next level (you?).

What exactly is Small Business Flight School?

Small Business Flight School is an online program that guides you through the creation of a small business growth plan. In it, you will learn six steps to grow your business while receiving support to put the steps into action.

Program participants receive:

  • A proven path to double their revenue
  • 22 short videos with a coordinating digital, fill-in-the-blank plan
  • Group calls with certified coaches to stay on track
  • Quarterly group calls with Donald Miller (you’ll soon call him “Don,” like I do in this post)
  • Access to a community of other growth-focused entrepreneurs

You will come away equipped to completely overhaul your small business in about six months. 

How long does the course take?

You can tackle the course in six months by dedicating about five hours a week to the work. If you have more time, you can complete it faster. In your account, you will have the option to set your personal schedule and then receive reminder emails to ensure you stay on track. (Pro tip: I listen on 2x speed.)

How is Small Business Flight School different from Business Made Simple University?

Business Made Simple University is a subscription program that houses all of Don Miller and team’s courses—all things business, in one handy place. You can go through all the videos as you need them, at your own pace. Small Business Flight School, on the other hand, is super focused. You should be in it for six months or less. You will have weekly support to complete your growth plan and a community surrounding you so you know you’re doing it right. It’s BMSU on steroids, and the option to “put it off” is far less tempting. Honestly, it’s motivating to be around focused owners! The momentum is inevitable and the excitement is contagious.

How much does it cost? Small Business Flight School is a one-time purchase of $2495 (a payment plan is available). This gives you access to the content for one year. If you want more time or want to revisit the content every now and then, you can subscribe to Business Made Simple University for $275 per year after your Small Business Flight School subscription expires.

What does Small Business Flight School cover?

The curriculum for Small Business Flight School covers the six elements of your new business growth plan: leadership, marketing, sales, productization, overhead & operations, and cash flow. Here are the exact titles of each of the 22 videos:

  • Leadership
  • Professionalize Your Operation and Double the Revenue of Your Small Business
  • Write a New Mission Statement That Includes Three Economic Objectives
  • Define What Sort of People Need to Be On Your Team
  • Define the Critical Actions You and Your Team Can Take to Grow Your Small Business
  • Marketing
  • Clarify Your Message So Customers Will Listen (Part One)
  • Clarify Your Message So Customers Will Listen (Part Two)
  • Create a Sales Funnel That Supports a Single Controlling Idea
  • Wireframe a Website That Generates Sales
  • Create a Lead Generator That Attracts Qualified Leads
  • Send Automated Emails That Earn Trust and Build Familiarity
  • Sales
  • Learn to Create a Million-Dollar Sales Pitch
  • Engage in Sales Conversations That Help Customers Solve Problems
  • Products
  • Rate Your Products From Most to Least Profitable
  • Install a Product Brief Worksheet Into Your Systems and Processes
  • Overhead & Operations
  • Run a Management and Productivity Playbook That Involves Five Meetings
  • Install a Weekly Leadership Meeting
  • Install Department Stand-Ups
  • Install Personal Priority Speed Checks
  • Install the Quarterly Performance Review
  • Cashflow
  • Open Five Checking Accounts You Will Use to Run Your Small Business
  • Use Five Checking Accounts to Save Money, Make Money, and Protect Your Cash Flow
  • Continue Using the Small Business Flight Plan to Double Your Revenue Over and Over

Do you have more questions before you’re ready to make a purchase? Send me an email at I’ll get back with you in 1-2 business days.

So should you go for it?

I can’t answer that for you, of course. Only you know your finances, time availability, and goals. But if you can spare the fee, can commit the time, and want to grow your business, I can say with confidence that this is a killer deal. Just two of the modules in the program (of the 6 offered) changed my life.

Enroll in Small Business Flight School today! (If you want.)

P.S. If you’re going to buy, consider reaching out to me first ( If you purchase the program through me, I earn a commission, and I would love to share that with you in the form of a credit for my services (I write Brand Message Guides, websites, lead magnets, email sequences, and blogs). My portfolio is on my website.

Angie Schultz StoryBrand Certified Guide since 2018

Angie Schultz

Make StoryBrand work for you.

So many business leaders fall in love with StoryBrand but get overwhelmed when it comes to making it work for their website.

Over the last four years, we’ve partnered with Angie Schultz, a StoryBrand Certified Guide, to help help dozens of businesses implement StoryBrand on their websites and marketing materials.
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