Powell soon found that what he lacked in business experience, he more than made up for in passion for selling books. He loved selling books so much that he opened a store with his father back home in Portland, Ore. Now, Powell’s Books occupies a city block, plus satellite stores and a Web site, and sells more than a million titles.
“At a lot of points, I could have stopped and said this is my comfort level,” Powell says. “But I liked to buy books too much.”
Perhaps that’s what allows Powell to identify so closely with his customers’ tastes ... and to trust them.
“The [secret] is to keep asking yourself, ‘Am I doing as much as I can to find my audience?’ I’d sell a book to the devil in hope of his reading it.”
Now, that’s putting passion to good use.
— Adapted from “Michael Powell: Why settle for owning the little shop around the corner?” as told to John Brant, Inc.