Built to Sell: Creating a Business That Can Thrive Without You by John Warrillow (Nicole Schlinger Book Review)

Whether you want to sell your business in 2 years … 20 years … or never … there’s plenty of great wisdom in this book to make your journey more enjoyable, scalable, and ultimately profitable. This book came along right when I needed it … thanks John Warrillow Nicole Schlinger

Published in 2011, reading this book represented a fundamental transformation in my understanding of how to build and run a business.

His fictional business owner, Alex, owns a small “jack of all trades” advertising agency that provides many different services to different kinds of clients. He was painfully tied to one large client who treated him poorly, and his staff was subpar and unmotivated.

In short, Alex was facing many of the same frustrations and indignities that marked my days at that time.

Alex turns to his wise — and very rich — friend Ted who explains that a sellable business is a scalable business one.

What is a scalable business? It is a business whose outcomes are:

Teachable — there is a process by which you can train other qualified people to effectively deliver the product or service

Valuable — something client want and will pay money for, and is not a commodity

Repeatable — something which can be delivered over and over again.

Ted guides Alex to change his company. Alex sees much success. And at the end, Alex sells his company and rides off into the sunset.

By now you might have noticed a pattern … I love business concepts that are presented as fictional tales.

There is something so satisfying and much more viscerally appealing about seeing characters in a story learn lessons the hard way, than the never-ending lecture of business experts and self-help gurus who always know best.

Whether you want to sell your business now, in two years … or never (like me) … the processes you’ll learn in this easy-to-read fable will benefit you.