Title: Anything You Want (Affiliate Link) from the Domino Project
Author: Derek Sivers (CD Baby, Personal Site, Facebook, Twitter)
Page count: 77 in hardback
Rating: 8 out of 10
Who should read: This book is for entrepreneurs. Period. If you don’t know whether you’re an entrepreneur, but might want to be one some day… Then it might be for you as well.
The Punch Line: It was published by the Domino Project (Seth Godin’s publishing venture), which is always a good thing in my experience. It’s short – if you read fast, you can absolutely finish in an hour. You get a feel for Derek Sivers as a person. And maybe most importantly, you learn from his experience as an accidental entrepreneur.
Extended Thoughts and Summary:
Derek Sivers starts the book with a summary of his philosophy. My favorite of the bulleted life/business lessons (and the first one he lists):
- “Business is not about money. It’s about making dreams come true for yourself and others.”
Now that’s a way to start a book. I could easily list each of the bullets here, because I loved them, but I’ll just leave it at this: they’re on page three and if you only read one page, read this one.
Mr. Sivers continues with his story of accidentally founding a company that he would eventually sell for $22 million… If only we could all have such fortunate accidents. Right in the middle of the story, Sivers made a comment that I really hit home for me:
“When you make a business, you get to make a little universe where you control all the laws. This is your utopia.”
Sivers continues down the meandering path that became CD baby, quoting Steve Blank: “No plan survives first contact with customers.”
He does an amazing job of incorporating tidbits of entrepreneurial wisdom into his wonderful story of small failures to reach huge success. And throughout he continues to hit on his main points made on that great page 3 summary. At the heart of it all? Love what you do and do it for the customers.
A couple more thoughts, and then I’ll send you on your merry way to order your own copy of Anything You Want (and if you do so by using my affiliate link, that’s really awesome of you!)
I’ve read this from almost every entrepreneur, and Derek Sivers is no different: learn to delegate! His caveat to delegation is to trust those to whom you delegate, but verify they are getting the job done appropriately.
Sivers makes this comment on the next to last page, and I loved it so much that I thought I’d finish this summary with it:
“Business is as creative as the fine arts. You can be as unconventional, unique, and quirky as you want. A business is a reflection of the creator.”
Can you tell that he and I would get along?
If you loved this summary, and you’d like more, please email me for a guided discussion template for Anything You Want. It’s great for buying several copies, passing them out to a mastermind group or team at work and having a spirited discussion around constructive, unconventional ideas!