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The Creator's Code

The Six Essential Skills of Extraordinary Entrepreneurs

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Kevin Plank was relatively small for an American footballer, and when he weighed the cotton T-shirt he wore under his team uniform, he found it weighed three pounds because it was so drenched in sweat. Knowing he couldn't hinder himself in this way, he set about finding a material that wasn't so absorbent. Going to a local fabric shop, he soon learned that synthetic materials would not take in as much sweat, so he had a shirt made and found it added just four ounces over the course of a game. When he gave some team-mates samples to try, they also soon saw the advantages. He began to produce the shirts commercially, and now Under Armour is a $2 billion global brand used by people from every sport.

Packed with fascinating and inspirational tales of success, Amy Wilkinson's brilliant book explains the six essential skills required by entrepreneurs to achieve their dreams. Based on in-depth interviews with the founders of numerous global brands, from eBay to Spanx, from LinkedIn to PayPal, she shows just what they did and what set them apart. For the key to being a successful entrepreneur isn't necessarily about being 'first', it is about being the 'only' one, and devising a new formula where none previously existed. Above all, these stories show how - if you follow the right steps - anyone can become a successful entrepreneur.

Photograph by Katarina Price

Amy Wilkinson is a strategic adviser, entrepreneur, and lecturer at the Stanford Graduate School of Business. She frequently addresses corporate, association, and university audiences on entrepreneurial leadership. She also advises startups and large corporations on innovation and business strategy. Her career spans leadership roles with McKinsey & Company and JP Morgan and as founder of a small foreign-based export company. Wilkinson has served as a White House Fellow in the Office of the United States Trade Representative and as a senior fellow at the Harvard Kennedy School. Learn more about her work at AmyWilkinson.com.

  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster UK (February 26, 2015)
  • Length: 240 pages
  • ISBN13: 9781471142550