Our launch is underway. We are now gearing up the sales processes for all of our clients, and we’ll be delivering the follow-on service for everyone.
I wanted to take a moment now to tell you what books and information that we are following most closely.
A lot of people make lists of “20 must-read books.” It’s hard to think in terms of that. 20 is a lot. Yes, we should read 20 books a year, but not all of them can be “must reads”. That cheapens the definition of must-read.
Profit First, by Mike Michalowicz
This is how we run our accounting systems, and what we advocate our clients do.
I wish someone had recommended me this book a few years ago. They probably did, so I guess I wish I would have listened. My company earned a ton of revenue, but I wasn’t left with much after all was said and done. I made about every mistake a dude can make, and Mike’s story parallels my own. (Thank you, Jeff for this.)
I figured that Sales Cures All but that’s only true when you’re profits are part of your business.
What It Got Out Of It (And maybe you will too)
Sane, sober systems for running a profitable business. And running personal finances the same way. A “real revenue” number that accounts for labor costs and forces reality upon us.
This means that I have a way to start fresh and leave behind the things that I’ve done wrong.
I can create that impeccable business that I’ve wanted to for a long time.
I have the chance to run a beautiful and clean business from day one. To always have money to cover taxes and other expenses and to be truly profitable.
“Remember, your business is supposed to serve you; you are not in service to your business!”
The Lost Art of Closing By Anthony Iannarino:
This book is the most like our sales process of any book out there. How we deliver a sales conversation is heavily influenced by this book. It’s honest, it’s helpful, and it’s effective.
This – and Anthony’s other book TOSG – are the only pure sales books I’m recommending right now. Because all of the information is current, valid, valuable, and it works in today’s market. Anthony’s book is values-based.
What I Got Out Of It (And Maybe You Will Too)
A lot of books say “always be closing.” That’s a better default than most salespeople use, but most people close for the wrong thing at the wrong time. This book will show you that you need to close in sequence. From prospecting to delivery. And when you do people will feel good about the work that you do.
“Asking for the decision to buy before I was ready practically ensured that his ask would be rejected.”
Real Artists Don’t Starve: by Jeff Goins
This book is all about our expectations. This business can help creative professionals grow faster. But, this business won’t grow overnight.
Ah, this book. If you had asked me how I liked it after I read it, I may have said “meh.” Except that it kept sticking with me. It seemed too easy, too simple, but I felt like it was right. I thought about this book in the shower, and on hikes. I thought about building life where I could create and help others do the same. And I implemented the ideas a little at a time. This book is doubly important because our mission is to serve the creative class.
What I Got From It (and maybe you will)
Sane productivity without being all “hyper and spastic.” Good habits. Throughput. A relaxed confident vibe. A way to say yes, a way to say no. A way to bridge the taste-talent gap productively, and an understanding that starvation isn’t necessary.
More often than not, our creative dreams aren’t launched overnight. They are built gradually.
The 12 Week Year: By Brian P. Moran and Michael Lennington.
This book is about how we manage our time, set individual goals and hit them.
We live in a world that preaches eternal hustle. But that creates burnout.
The crappy ads for Fiverr & other places inform us that eternal hustle, bleary-eyed widget grinding is just what we have to do. Blind ourselves with hustle.
There’s a better “growth” oriented answer, and that’s to work deliberately and in sprints. This book – the 12 week year – is a guidebook for being truly productive.
What I Got From It (And Maybe You Will, Too):
They have a simple, specific system to move faster through your goals. They advocate time blocking and planning deliberately, checking in and accountability.
It’s natural to think that the goal of life balance is to spend equal time and energy in the various areas of your life, but in reality, that is not practical and it would not necessarily create the life you desire.
Principles: By Ray Dalio:
This book is about strategic thinking and global systems for our business.Why we’re doing what we’re doing.
“Another one of those.”
That’s an inside joke once you read the book. Instead of encountering everything as a “one-off” we are advised to seek principles that will help us cope with reality a little bit faster.
A couple of my mentors mentioned this book on Facebook and I had to own it. I wasn’t a huge fan of the launch marketing – something soured me and created sales antibodies.
What I Got Out Of It (And Maybe You Will Too)
A reality-based system for looking at reality, and then looking at your goals. And then developing character consistently. The book Principles is stunning in its breadth and scope.
Think for yourself to decide:
1. What you want
2. What is true , and
3.What you should do to achieve #1 in light of #2.
There are some other books that definitely influence my thinking here. Here are a few other books that worked pretty well and benefited me a lot along the way.
Launch, by Jeff Walker: This is helping me begin my business and sequence things properly.
One Hour Content Plan, by Merra Kothand: I loved this book, and am doing my content marketing based on it.
Platform by Michael Hyatt: the book on presenting yourself online.
Get Momentum By Jason & Jodi Womack: This is a quick system to make forward progress on projects and other things that matter.
Perennial Seller by Ryan Holiday: This is about making lasting work, and that’s what we mean to do here at ICYD.
I’m excited because I have the this might not work feeling. But I think it will. And I think we’re going to change the lives of 25 entrepreneurs in 2018.