/Four Books Every Seller Should Read

Four Books Every Seller Should Read
Jan 29, 2024 6 min read

Four Books Every Seller Should Read

Dillon Carter
Dillon Carter
Co-Founder, COO at Aura

In the ever-evolving world of selling on Amazon, succeeding requires a lot. It's not about outsourcing more, but building a solid foundation of time-tested principles.

I've spent a third of my life in the Amazon space—either as a seller or in software. I've been able to distill the differences between successful and struggling sellers. These aren't elusive secrets ether, but things anyone can learn. Including you.

In fact, the core of these principles are already available to you in a few select books. These aren't just any books, but pillars that will help you succeed.

The four cornerstone books

Sifting through countless productivity and business books is no small feat. I've read as many as you can count and then some. However, there are four books that stand out among the rest.

  • Profit First gives you a foolproof formula to secure profitability from day one.
  • The 12 Week Year gives you the tools to inject speed and focus effortlessly.
  • Never Eat Alone teaches the art of networking, turning connections into remarkable goals.
  • Work the System shows how to streamline every cog in your business machine.

With that in mind, let's dive deeper into each book.

Profit First: Managing finances

Tackling finances can intimidate almost any entrepreneur. Despite having a degree in finance, I often find myself overwhelmed in this area.

That's where Mike Michalowicz's Profit First method comes into the picture. It's a favorite among seasoned sellers and a topic we covered with Mike in an episode of the Wholesale Made Easy podcast.

The Profit First method flips traditional accounting on its head. You create predetermined percentages of revenue allocated first to profit. You then begin paying your expenses based on their predetermined allocation.

This method ensures you stay profitable and keep expenses in check as the business grows. It also ensures that you're investing for growth, rather than stacking unused capital.

12 Week Year: Managing time

Productivity is a massive rabbit hole. Because of this, it's good to pick a few methods or frameworks to commit to. One of those frameworks is the 12 Week Year by Brian Moran and Michael Lennington.

I find most sellers are reactive—never planning where they want to be in the coming months.

This creates a massive decline in performance and growth. When you know where you're going you can more easily reverse-engineer how to get there.

The question then becomes; how do I get there faster?

That's what the 12 Week Year aims to answer. By compressing what you think you can accomplish from 12 months to 12 weeks, you add a sense of urgency and focus in your every day.

While it seems obvious and straightforward of a method, I urge you to read the book to understand how to do it right. It's very easy to burn yourself out.

Never Eat Alone: Managing people

We've written about the power of networking for sellers before. However, this book is one of the most impactful books I've ever read. It helps you understand what networking is, rather than our preconceived notions.

Even better, it gives a clear framework for how to do it—answering the how of networking.

As it turns out, networking is not about collecting contacts, but about building real relationships. The book emphasizes going into a new relationship by getting to know what the other person values and wants. Then, it's all about helping them get what they want first.

Work the System: Managing operations

The systems you have in place can be the difference between thriving and surviving. While many have heard of The E-Myth Revisited, I think a more actionable book is Sam Carpenter's Work the System. It's a blueprint for transforming chaos into order.

The central premise is that a business is not a single entity but a collection of systems. Fine-tuning these systems significantly enhances their efficiency and effectiveness.

The key lies in stepping back to view your operations from an "outside and slightly elevated" vantage point. This detachment allows you to identify, document, and refine the processes that make up your business. It's about making the implicit explicit and the unconscious conscious, turning every task, no matter how small, into a cog in a well-oiled machine.

The book doesn't solely focus on theory either. Carpenter dives into the details with specific examples from his own business.

"Work the System" is more than just a book; it's a mindset shift. Embracing its principles means moving beyond the daily firefighting to a state where your business operates smoothly, almost autonomously.

Wrapping it up

Arming yourself with the right knowledge can be the linchpin for success as a seller. These books offer more than simple strategies and insights. They provide blueprints for building a resilient and profitable business.

Remember, reading each book is worth the time, but applying each one is worth far more. Pick one of the four and dive head first into learning and applying the methods.

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