Anything You Want by Derek Sivers (@Sivers) [Book Review]
“Never forget that absolutely everything you do is for your customers. Make every decision—even decisions about whether to expand the business, raise money, or promote someone—according to what’s best for your customers. If you’re ever unsure what to prioritize, just ask your customers the open-ended question, “How can I best help you now?” Then focus on satisfying those requests.
None of your customers will ask you to turn your attention to expanding. They want you to keep your attention focused on them. It’s counterintuitive, but the way to grow your business is to focus entirely on your existing customers. Just thrill them, and they’ll tell everyone.”
I’m a Derek Sivers fan. He has done several TED Talks – many of which are less than 6 minutes and highly popular. And he replied to a cold email I sent him when I was looking for some advice to start my speaking career (he told me to apply for TED Talks).
Derek is also a great writer. He doesn’t write long, detailed posts. He gets his point made in few words and makes it all smooth and conversational. A worthy goal for any writer.
Anything You Want is a great example of this. I read the entire (short) book in an hour. A few of the chapters were reminiscent of blog posts I’d read on Derek’s site, and weaved between those was Derek’s story of starting, running and selling CD Baby. If I have to tell you that this book is still worth buying, even if some of the content is/was on his blog, you should not be reading this site. I’ll tell you anyway: You value what you pay for. You ignore and take for granted what you get for free.
Anything You Want is a great story that illustrates his advice to entrepreneurs at the same time. The difference with Derek is that his advice is malleable: do what makes YOU happy! And he can’t define what that will be for you.
What he does do, is share what he did and the philosophy behind why. And that’s the best any advisor can do.