The E-Myth Revisited by Michael E. Gerber looks at the misconceptions people have about entrepreneurship. The biggest mistake entrepreneurs make when they start a business is thinking that all they need is a good idea and an affinity for hard work to make a success out of the business. As Gerber explains, there is a lot more to a business than just having an idea and then bootstrapping it.
The hardest part of having a business of your own is always the start. It is the start that dictates whether your business succeeds or fails. 80% of the startups fail because they don’t get “The Art of the Start” right. Author Guy Kawasaki focuses exclusively on this – everything related to starting a business.
Charles Handy is considered to be one of the best business writers on human resources. He considers himself a “social philosopher” rather than as a business writer. Popular business writer Tom Peters said this about Handy: “Put simply, he is one of the most decent and thoughtful and profound people-professionals I have ever known. We agree on many-most-almost all-virtually everything when it comes to the ‘important stuff.’ ”
There are any number of business books that talk about the nuts and bolts of business. They tell you how to run a business, how to manage employees, how to raise capital, set business goals and have a business plan. What these books don’t talk about is the “why” of business – why have the business in the first place.
Randy Komisar has had the sort of career that one would die to have. Harvard Law School grad, goes on to work as Apple as chief legal counsel, starts his own company, holds top positions at several software firms, was behind the creation of WebTV, TiVo, and Mondo Media. Phew! Komisar, as you will find from this book, is also philosopher, apart from being a corporate warrior.
Written brilliantly by David Dorsey, who spent a year with the sales team that sold Xerox photocopiers, The Force is a riveting account of how sales was done back in the 1980’s and 1990’s. Essentially, the book brings out the excitement of sales, just as well as it explores the dark side of selling.
As authors Joseph Pine and James Gilmore ask at the beginning of the book – What’s common between the Hard Rock Cafe, Disney World, and Starbucks? They are all successful companies – successful because they delivery something much more valuable than food or drink. They deliver something more intangible, called “Experience” and are based in the “Experience Economy”.
You get pearls of wisdom like that throughout Zig Zaglar’s book, Secrets of Closing. Many young salespersons are asked to read this book by the organizations they work for, and one can see why. The advice given by Zaglar is very specific and practical, and the most important thing he does is to simplify the process that goes into closing a sale.
Andy Grove was one of the greatest CEOs in the technology sector of all times. He was the man who made Intel one of the greatest companies of the last 50 years – a company that revolutionized the computer industry with its invention of the microprocessor.
As someone who had worked a part-time job in sales as a teen, I could immediately relate to “How to Become a Rainmaker” by Jeffrey J. Fox. What the book does is to change your entire perspective towards sales. Salespersons get a plenty of advice on what they ought to be doing and what not – but the simple truth about sales is that it’s all about the people who pay your bills – the customers. Win the customers, and you will become a Rainmaker for your organization.