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Built to Sell: Creating a Business That Can Thrive Without You | [John Warrillow]

Built to Sell: Creating a Business That Can Thrive Without You

A business parable about how to create a start-up that won't trap you when you want to sell it. According to John Warrillow, the number one mistake entrepreneurs make is to build a business that relies too heavily on them. Thus, when the time comes to sell, buyers aren't confident that the company-even if it's profitable-can stand on its own. To illustrate this, Warrillow introduces us to a fictional small business owner named Alex who is struggling to sell his advertising agency.
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Publisher's Summary

A business parable about how to create a start-up that won't trap you when you want to sell it. According to John Warrillow, the number one mistake entrepreneurs make is to build a business that relies too heavily on them. Thus, when the time comes to sell, buyers aren't confident that the company-even if it's profitable-can stand on its own. To illustrate this, Warrillow introduces us to a fictional small business owner named Alex who is struggling to sell his advertising agency. Alex turns to Ted, an entrepreneur and old family friend, who encourages Alex to pursue three criteria to make his business sellable:

  • Teachable: focus on products and services that you can teach employees to deliver.
  • Valuable: avoid price wars by specializing in doing one thing better than anyone else.
  • Repeatable: generate recurring revenue by engineering products that customers have to repurchase often.

©2011 John Warrilow (P)2011 Gildan Media Corp

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.4 (163 )
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3.9 (134 )
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Performance
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  •  
    M. Muin 05-23-12
    M. Muin 05-23-12 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
    10
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    "Good content, Very bad narration"
    Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

    I'd recommend buying the real book--not listening to this audio book.


    Would you be willing to try another book from John Warrillow? Why or why not?

    Yes.


    Would you be willing to try another one of Erik Synnestvedt’s performances?

    I'd avoid him as much as possible if I can.


    Any additional comments?

    It was hard to digest the content when you are distracted by the whiny voice that stops/starts without context of the whole sentence or paragraph.

    9 of 9 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Rachael Los Angeles, CA 02-17-13
    Rachael Los Angeles, CA 02-17-13
    HELPFUL VOTES
    29
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    "Narrator is awful!"

    Ex of voice: Helloh thereuh. How are youuuah? Wellah. Iam fiynuhhh. Thank youahh.

    The entire book is like this!!!

    The way the narrator speaks is the way they make fun of public speakers. A voice that is comically used in a way that we feel the person is full of themselves, having bloated sentences that extend the last letters of the word. At first I thought it was a joke, then I knew it was legit and it is VERY hard to listen to. Very obnoxious. Hard to listen to! Preview it and see if you can handle it. I wish I had...

    The book is fine, the narrator blows it.

    7 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Antonio Carlsbad, CA, United States 06-11-11
    Antonio Carlsbad, CA, United States 06-11-11 Member Since 2004
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Dare I say it... Better then E-Myth"

    I have over 280 Audible titles 95% of theme are business\personal Development related and I review very or rate very few as many are the same after awhile. This was a stand out title and now has become an absolute favorite Top 3 by far. I just finished my 1st listen and I will be going back over and over again. Anyone is business to sell or not should own this book. There are many easy to follow actionable items that will give great freedom in your business. If E-myth is the entry class this is the advanced course.

    10 of 11 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mike Houston, TX, United States 08-01-12
    Mike Houston, TX, United States 08-01-12 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Surprisingly informational with good tips"
    What did you love best about Built to Sell?

    I wasn't sure I would like a fictional company story and tips weaved into this format. It went into good detail and the expert friend, Ted, had good and fairly complex tips. The fictional company was fairly realistic and I liked the part when the seller was fumbling over why he was selling to potential buyers.

    The narrator is a little pole smokey. I have heard him on one other audio book and his delivery is smarmy. The end of most of his sentences sound like questions. You might want to listen to the 5 min sample to make sure you can handle this narrator.

    The content is good for all level of business owners.


    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jason Cambridge, ON, Canada 04-16-13
    Jason Cambridge, ON, Canada 04-16-13 Member Since 2008

    ZEN. LDS. GTD. FTW.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "I actually LIKE the narration..."
    What made the experience of listening to Built to Sell the most enjoyable?

    The narrator has a very signature style and it made the so-so story of Built to Sell more listenable. In fact, this is one of the few audiobooks I've listened to twice.

    However, judging by the other remarks, I guess Erik's narration is a love it or hate it proposition. I personally thought it was great.


    Would you recommend Built to Sell to your friends? Why or why not?

    Yes, but with the caveat that the book is a little unrealistic in how fast a business can ramp up revenues (especially a logo design firm).


    Any additional comments?

    Better than E-Myth by a country mile.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    David Mosman, Australia 07-14-14
    David Mosman, Australia 07-14-14 Member Since 2012
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    18
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    Story
    "Great content but HORRIBLE nattation."
    This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

    If you're deaf you might be able to cope.


    What other book might you compare Built to Sell to and why?

    I couldn't tell you, I couldn't absorb the content.


    How could the performance have been better?

    The narrators voice is incredibly difficult to listen to and completely distracts from the content.

    He uses voices that are excessively overblown and has a weird twang that he uses at the end of almost every sentence.


    If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from Built to Sell?

    The end of every sentence.


    Any additional comments?

    I don't often write scathing reviews, but the narration of this book REALLY REALLY destroyed what is otherwise a good book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    M. J. Williquette Hartselle,AL 06-01-14
    M. J. Williquette Hartselle,AL 06-01-14

    mjwillyone

    ratings
    REVIEWS
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    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Excellent Book"
    Would you consider the audio edition of Built to Sell to be better than the print version?

    I found it more enjoyable to listen to the book rather than read it. I suppose it had something to do with the fact that this book is written in the business-novel style so there is a story-line which is not typical of business books.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Built to Sell?

    The hiring of two sales people so that they may compete against each other was an idea I had never before thought of. While the competition doesn't have to be harsh, it can certainly be helpful.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    Yes, it really was.


    Any additional comments?

    I own a marketing company that specializes in creating websites solely for service -based businesses. My means of getting new clients has been to call companies when I see their service trucks around town or while I am traveling out of town and ask questions relating to their business. If I don't see a website on the truck I will ask if they have one. This has been my main means of getting new clients.This book was a great help in getting me to see that my business would do better with out me as its sole salesperson. The way it was written reminds me of a book I read some years ago titled, "The Goal." I have found the business-novel type book to be a great way of seeing key principles in action.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    les JOPLIN, MO, United States 05-08-14
    les JOPLIN, MO, United States 05-08-14 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Great book! Narration terrible :("

    The content of the book was great; however the narration of the book was god-aweful. If bad narration were people, Erik Synnestvedt would be China!

    Built to Sell was built for reading...not built for audio.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    FilmFilmFilm 04-21-14 Member Since 2011
    ratings
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    1
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    "Narration needs to be redone."
    What disappointed you about Built to Sell?

    I was very excited to get into the content of this book, however, the reader is so impossible to listen to, I can't get past 5 minutes at a time. The way he speaks is such a joke, I'm absolutely impressed the producers of the audiobook actually thought this was a good idea. Ouch. I've never had to write a review like this!


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Built to Sell?

    I couldn't get past the first few chapters, so I'm moving to the eBook as I still would like to read the book.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jonathan Peterborough, NH, United States 03-17-14
    Jonathan Peterborough, NH, United States 03-17-14
    ratings
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    1
    1
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    Performance
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    "Comically bad narration, but excellent content"

    Comically bad narration, but excellent content. this book opened me up to some new ideas.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 1-10 of 20 results PREVIOUS12NEXT
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  • Steven
    SWINDON, United Kingdom
    3/4/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Expert advice for building a scalable business"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    If you're looking to develop a scalable business and an asset you can sell, this is THE book that you need to read.


    What did you like best about this story?

    It shares practical advice to help develop systems that design business owners out of the day-to-day operations of their business and ensure consistency when dealing with customers. Applying this to my business, has paid for the book a thousand times over.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Rob Waite
    Stroud, Gloucestershire
    10/16/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "If you own your own business definitely read this."
    If you could sum up Built to Sell in three words, what would they be?

    Engaging, easy listen


    What did you like best about this story?

    The case study business the author uses is really engaging and reflects aspects of so many businesses, stages of business growth and the day to day issues small business owners have to deal with.


    Any additional comments?

    This book is just the right length, an easy listen thanks to the engaging narrator, and an extremely solid case stud laid out by the author covering all aspects of a small business going through stages of growth. A must read for any business owner, even if you're not looking to sell your business it is still incredibly inspirational. I went straight into work and have my team a presentation on my vision for the future of our business!!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
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