October 6, 2006

News & Opinion: Specific Books For Specific Problems

By: Dylan Schleicher @ 6:33 PM – Filed under: Big Ideas & New Perspectives

I have a theory that people buy business books for one of two reasons:
  1. They are trying to solve a problem.
  2. They are looking for ideas.

We have a tendency to talk about idea books here. Those are what we are attracted to. Tom's essay this morning on the FT/Goldman Sachs Awards is case in point.

Problem solving books are just as important. If you have just been given a new project or a new job, there are all sorts of questions jumping around in your head. Often, you will just listen to those around you for advice. Books can give you a great third-party resource.

Amacom is good at these sorts of books. Sell Your Business Your Way by Rick Rickertsen is a perfect example. Here is a book that deals with a very specific subject - the things that business owners need to think about when they are deciding to sell their firm. Rickertsen talks about valuation, motivation, and what life after the business might be like. A couple other Amacom titles that match this profile are Effective Succession Planning by William Rothwell and The Complete Guide to Sales Force Incentive Compensation by Andris A. Zoltners, et al.

About Dylan Schleicher

Dylan Schleicher has been a part of the 800-CEO-READ claque since 2003. Even though he's stayed on at the company, he has not stayed put. After beginning in shipping & receiving, he joined customer service and accounting before moving into his current, highly elliptical orbit of duties overseeing the ChangeThis and In the Books websites, the company's annual review of books and in-house design. He lives with his wife and two children in the Washington Heights neighborhood on Milwaukee's West Side.