Automotive Holiday Deals Books Gift Guide Books Gift Guide Shop Men's Athletic Shoes Learn more nav_sap_SWP_6M_fly_beacon Indie for the Holidays egg_2015 All-New Amazon Fire TV Beauty Deals Gifts for Her Amazon Gift Card Offer cm15 cm15 cm15 $30 Off Amazon Echo $30 Off Fire HD 6 Kindle Cyber Monday Deals Classics and Essentials in CDs & Vinyl Shop Now DOTD
Talent Is Not Enough: Business Secrets For Designers and over one million other books are available for Amazon Kindle. Learn more

Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.

  • Apple
  • Android
  • Windows Phone
  • Android

To get the free app, enter your email address or mobile phone number.

  • List Price: $44.99
  • Save: $15.52 (34%)
FREE Shipping on orders over $35.
Only 7 left in stock (more on the way).
Ships from and sold by Gift-wrap available.
Talent Is Not Enough: Bus... has been added to your Cart
Condition: Used: Good
Comment: This is a used text in good condition. It may have some writing and highlighting. Ships directly from Amazon. All Supplemental discs, materials, or access codes should be included. Eligible for free super saver shipping.
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See all 2 images

Talent Is Not Enough: Business Secrets For Designers (2nd Edition) (Voices That Matter) Paperback – May 2, 2010

7 customer reviews

See all 2 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
New from Used from
"Please retry"
"Please retry"
$22.70 $1.00

$29.47 FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Only 7 left in stock (more on the way). Ships from and sold by Gift-wrap available.

Frequently Bought Together

  • Talent Is Not Enough: Business Secrets For Designers (2nd Edition) (Voices That Matter)
  • +
  • Graphic Artist's Guild Handbook of Pricing and Ethical Guidelines (Graphic Artists Guild Handbook: Pricing & Ethical Guidelines)
Total price: $53.25
Buy the selected items together

Special Offers and Product Promotions

  • Take an Extra 30% Off Any Book: Use promo code HOLIDAY30 at checkout to get an extra 30% off any book for a limited time. Excludes Kindle eBooks and Audible Audiobooks. Restrictions apply. Learn more | Shop now

Editorial Reviews


“Now that design skills have become a commodity, you need business skills to focus them. Shel Perkins has written a crackerjack book that will be on the shelf of every ambitious designer.”
Marty Neumeier
President, Neutron LLC
Author of Zag and The Brand Gap

“Shel Perkins' book Talent Is Not Enough: Business Secrets For Designers is a gift to the design community. It is an extraordinary resource jam-packed with wisdom, advice, and sage counsel. It is truly a business bible for professional designers.”
Debbie Millman
President, Design Group, Sterling Brands
Host of Design Matters on VoiceAmerica Internet Talk Radio
Author of How to Think Like a Great Graphic Designer

“This is the best left-brain business book I’ve ever read for right-brain designers. And, having two right brains, I know what I’m talking about. I’m recommending Shel’s book to every student of mine and buying a copy for each designer on my staff.”
Brian Collins
Chief Creative Officer, Brand Integration Group, Ogilvy & Mather Worldwide

"Finally -- a comprehensive business guide written just for us. No designer should live without this book!"
Lynda Weinman
Author of Designing Web Graphics

“If only I could give a copy of Talent Is Not Enough to every graduating student! It's an invaluable guidebook. I wish it had been around before I went through my own education in the school of hard knocks.”
Louise Sandhaus
Program Director, Graphic Design,
California Institute of the Arts

“Damn good advice! This is a fantastic business handbook for designers. It’s loaded with the specific, usable, real-world business knowledge that designers need. Shel has done a masterful job of making the information simple, clear, and easy to follow. This is a must-have book for any designer who wants to succeed in business.”
Billy Pittard
President, Pittard Inc.

“This is a virtual encyclopedia of essential design business information. I’ve practiced on both sides of the freelance/in-house fence for more than twenty-five years and it amazes me that there’s not a single business question I’ve encountered that doesn’t have an in-depth answer in this book. Just as important as the range of advice is the fact that Shel’s conversational writing style makes all the information accessible and easy to understand. This is the go-to resource for all design business topics.”
Andy Epstein
Chair, AIGA Task Force on In-House Design
Author of The Corporate Creative: Tips and Tactics for Thriving as an In-House Designer

“This is the most concise and brilliantly informative guide I have ever wished I’d read before establishing three studios for ATTIK. Shel has managed to capture a vast array of learning that most of us only gather after many years of trial and error — a guide that every independent designer or agency owner should have within arm’s reach.”
Will Travis
President, U.S. Operations, ATTIK

“There is no doubt that Gravity Tank owes its success in part to Shel Perkins and the business values he taught me early in my career. Now all that wisdom is captured in Talent Is Not Enough. All creative professionals running their own business should grab a copy immediately and start reaping the benefits.”
Chris Conley
Partner and Co-Founder, Gravity Tank
Track Lead, Human-Centered Product Design, IIT Institute of Design

“A great overview of all of the issues that designers need to know to be in business.”
Nathan Shedroff
Chair, MBA in Design Strategy, California College of the Arts
Author of Making Meaning and Experience Design

“Many design firms and designers have benefited from Shel Perkins’ sound business perspectives and advice. Now Shel has written a valuable guide that continues that process. The lucky readers of Talent Is Not Enough: Business Secrets For Designers will absorb many important messages that are essential to success. Shel deserves a ‘thank-you’ for rendering this service to all designers.”
Roz Goldfarb
President, Roz Goldfarb Associates
Author of Careers by Design

“Destined to become a dog-eared reference for all those parts of running a design firm that they never taught in college.”
Mitchell Mauk
Principal, Mauk Design

“A confident and perceptive mentor, Perkins creates a painless navigation through a range of strategies and issues.”
Communication Arts Magazine

“Our favorite design consultant and your future best friend, Shel Perkins, literally wrote the book on this subject. Because he’s a designer himself, he can give advice in a way that doesn’t make creative types want to hurt themselves.”
Alissa Walker

“Where was this book when I was first starting out? Today, I keep it close to hand. It’s a fabulous resource for everyone in the design industry. Thank you Shel.”
Sylvia Harris
Information Design Strategist, Sylvia Harris LLC

“Although designers are highly skilled at applying their creativity toward solving design-related problems, most lack the fundamental business knowledge that would enable them to start or optimally run a firm. Whether you’re a student, design contractor, or design firm owner, Shel Perkins’ book, Talent Is Not Enough: Business Secrets For Designers, is a comprehensive source of information on the professional practice of design.”
Gerard Furbershaw
Co-Founder and COO, Lunar Design

“Packed with information on everything from how to get started to how to stay afloat.”
STEP Magazine

“I wish I had read this book when we started our business seventeen years ago. Or even ten years ago. Or even last month, come to think of it. There is a ton of incredibly valuable information in here.”
Bonnie Siegler
Co-founder, Number Seventeen

“Perkins’ book should be required reading for any designer who would like to turn their design degree into a paycheck.”
Robert Blinn
Core 77

“My students are required to read this book. It makes it crystal clear that landing (and keeping) a design job requires much more than just talent and technical ability.”
Mary Scott
Chair, School of Graphic Design, Academy of Art University

“It wouldn't be an exaggeration to say that just about everything I know about running a design agency I learned from Shel and this book.”
Eric Heiman
Principal, Volume Inc.

“Shel's book is a how-to for everyone in the business — from start-up design firms to established agencies to in-house teams. I'm reading it again and I'm still learning things. It's the next best thing to an in-person consultation.”
Stanley Hainsworth
Chairman and Chief Creative Officer, Tether
Author of Idea-ology: The Designer’s Journey

“As a first-time owner of a design studio, I find this book to be an invaluable reference guide. It provides options for challenges I face every day, and the security of knowing I can deal with the unexpected. This is a must-have for any design professional.”
Brian Jacobs
Founder, Brick Design

“Shel has written an illuminating book that belongs on every designer's desk.”
Ann Willoughby
President & Chief Creative Officer, Willoughby Design Group

“It is rare to find one individual with such a wide range of knowledge in the design-related fields. And, because of his experience as a designer, Shel brings a sensitivity and understanding to administrative issues while still respecting the artistic side of our industry.”
Frank Maddocks
President, Maddocks & Company

"This is a fantastic book; everyone should have a (well-worn) copy. In Shel's typical style, the information is delivered in clear, concise language. Required and highly valuable reading for us all."
Rob Bynder
Principal, Robert Bynder Design

"Shel Perkins has brought together the key insights and techniques every designer needs, whether they work from a spare room or a Madison Avenue cubicle. Use this book religiously: you'll have more energy for what matters most — creativity."
Bill Camarda
Read Only

"It is by far one of the best — if not the best — graphic design business book I have read."
Daniel Schutzsmith

"Shel Perkins spells out every aspect of business for every type of designer in language that is easy to understand. From career paths to pricing to legal issues, no stone is left unturned. This book is an invaluable asset."
Troy Finamore
Finamore Design

"This book is simply a must-have for anyone working in the design profession."
Deanna Moore 

From the Back Cover


Looking for the Audiobook Edition?
Tell us that you'd like this title to be produced as an audiobook, and we'll alert our colleagues at If you are the author or rights holder, let Audible help you produce the audiobook: Learn more at

Product Details

  • Series: Voices That Matter
  • Paperback: 448 pages
  • Publisher: New Riders; 2 edition (May 2, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0321702026
  • ISBN-13: 978-0321702029
  • Product Dimensions: 5.8 x 0.8 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #774,173 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Shel Perkins is a graphic designer, management consultant, and educator with more than twenty years of experience in managing the operations of leading design firms in the U.S. and the U.K. He currently provides management consulting services to a range of creative firms in both traditional and new media, and he serves as chairman of the AIGA Center for Practice Management.

He has written the Professional Practice column for STEP magazine, the Design Business newsletter for AIGA, and the Design Firm Management column for He has given presentations and workshops for many organizations, including IDSA, SEGD, HOW, ACD, Dynamic Graphics, STEP, Seybold, APDF, PromaxBDA, InSource, RGD Ontario, and the Graphic Artists Guild.

Shel teaches courses in professional practices at the California College of the Arts, the Academy of Art in San Francisco, and the University of California. He has served on the national boards of AIGA and the Association of Professional Design Firms. He has also been honored as an AIGA Fellow "in recognition of significant personal and professional contributions to raising the standards of excellence within the design community."

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Mitchell Bellach on May 1, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Was waiting for it to become relevant and it didn't. It actually included suggestions like;

"If you're currently in a design degree program, you have access to your school's computer lab. Once you graduate, however, that access will end. Plan ahead by buying your own computer and printer and establishing you own internet access and e-mail account." (p.30)

-This second edition was published in 2010!!! I Ended up skimming all four hundred and thirty pages in two nights. Also very North American centric with it's advice and references.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is the closest that I've seen to a proper design business bible. I've made use of other design business books, but none feel as comprehensive, modern and well laid-out as this one. I expect to be referencing it for the rest of my career.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Got this for one of my graduate classes at Academy of Art. Informative book that goes into detail about inside design practices and tips to know. Lots of info in a compact book. It isn't full of picture or fancy designs--just the facts.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
By miroman on May 3, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book gives great tips! Very detailed to what a freelance artist would need. Unfortunately, I can't practice everything the book says, but that's not the book's fault right?
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse

Set up an Amazon Giveaway

Amazon Giveaway allows you to run promotional giveaways in order to create buzz, reward your audience, and attract new followers and customers. Learn more
Talent Is Not Enough: Business Secrets For Designers (2nd Edition) (Voices That Matter)
This item: Talent Is Not Enough: Business Secrets For Designers (2nd Edition) (Voices That Matter)
Price: $29.47
Ships from and sold by

Want to discover more products? Check out this page to see more: design book