20 Books Every Aspiring Entrepreneur Needs To Read
Who wants to be an entrepreneur? A large number of people these days, owing to the increasing number of opportunities available. It’s no surprise then, that the how-to book business has expanded its shelf size to accommodate almost every kind of entrepreneur.
A good read is a great idea for someone who wishes to cultivate a winning skill sets that would aid his or her ascent up the career ladder, but choosing the right book to read can often become confusing when there is so much of literature to choose from.
This article takes care of this panacea by listing twenty must-reads for any entrepreneur in the making, which would also make the perfect addition to a home library.
The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People
In a book that seeks to provide holistic solutions to address personal and professional problems, author Stephen R. Covey develops an integrated approach that has its foundations set strong in basic principles.
He employs the usage of profound insights and pointed anecdotes that unravel the essential tenets of a successful entrepreneur—fairness, service, integrity and human dignity. With his belief that ethics like these are assets to living a life balanced between security and power, he explains how qualities like these imbibe the capability of adaptation to change and the wisdom to make effective use of the opportunities brought forth by change.
The 4-Hour Workweek: Escape 9-5, Live Anywhere, and Join the New Rich (Expanded and Updated)
The 4-Hour Workweek is an essential go-to for anyone who wants to cross the finish line with panache in the grueling rat race that is today’s unpredictable economic situation. From being able to take home your much-awaited five-figure monthly paycheck to fulfilling your dream of becoming a well-traveled globetrotter, author Timothy Ferriss tells it all, in a little less than four hundred pages. Say goodbye to the age-old life concept of retirement as the author reveals his tell-all of cutting-edge techniques on how to live a luxurious lifestyle. This book teaches, in a nutshell
- Timothy’s own story of going from an 80 hour per week, $40,000 per annum rigorous schedule to $40000 a month at 4 hours a week
- The story behind the round-the-world trips of stock market artists who do not seem to have to quit their jobs for vacation
- The versatile option of outsourcing to virtual assistants overseas for an hourly wage of $5
- How to work half of what you do right now, based on the principles of an Italian economist
- How to exchange an endlessly long career schedule for shorter, effective work bursts strewn with mini-retirements
The new and updated edition of The 4-Hour Workweek includes practical insights and anecdotes from readers who share their success stories of doubling income, overcoming basic hurdles and basically reinventing themselves using the original book as their blackboard. It also provides real templates that can be utilized to get rid of email, negotiate effectively with clients and bosses…… and even bring a gourmet chef to your doorstep for less than $8 a meal.
Reality Check: The Irreverent Guide to Outsmarting, Outmanaging, and Outmarketing Your Competition
Guy Kawasaki’s irreverent and individualistic skepticism serves as the template for this new book on the block. Business is often fraught with unclear demarcations between calculated risks and outright foolishness, educated speculations and sketchy theories. The inescapable allure of The Next Big Thing often consumes the smartest person out there, only to realize he is in danger of making, or has made, the Last Big Mistake.
The Thank You Economy
Well-known entrepreneur Gary Vaynerchuk spills the beans on how companies can offer personal attention to their customer base by putting to good use the same social media platforms that have lent consumers their voice. Look for compelling, factually strong evidence that illustrates how we are in the throes of a new business era, one in which companies that invest more in their customers are more likely to reap dividends than those who put their money on loud advertising campaigns. Flavored with Vaynerchuk’s trademark wit and candor, this book establishes the indelible link between social media platforms and the rich success of a flourishing business.
Made to Stick
Why Some Ideas Survive and Others Die:Educators and idea experts Chip and Dan Heath tackle the ever-puzzling question of what lies behind the death and survival of ideas. Exploring the anatomy of ideas that work, he proposes the “human scale principle”, creating “curiosity gaps” and using the “Velcro Theory of Memory”.
Refurbishing the way you communicate ideas, Made to Stick engages you in a whirlwind tour of success stories, the charities that thrive on “the Mother Teresa Effect”, the elementary-school teacher whose scientific experiment prevented racial prejudice and many, many more. Peppered with humor and eye-opening real-life episodes, this book embarks on a journey to open our eyes to the essentials of winning ideas….. and how we can make our own win.
Think and Grow Rich
The Landmark Bestseller – Now Revised and Updated for the 21st Century:With the rightful epithet of “Grandfather of All Motivational Literature”, this book was the first to implore what made a winner. Napoleon Hill, who has the answers, produces a philosophy termed as the “Law of Success” underlying his book and that is immaculately summarized here.
Founders at Work
Stories of Startups’ Early Days: True to its name, Jessica Livingston’s book features interviews with the masters of all startups, and the stories from their early days. Steve Wozniak, Max Levchin and Sabeer Bhatia, to name a few tell us in their own words their learning curves towards building and handling a successful company.
Answering our questions on how these ideas originated, how they overcame their trials in convincing investors for support and how they pulled out of sticky situations, this book illustrates how founders become who they are, because of the intense momentum with which they enforce value creation, and the secrets behind their success.
A Path to Profits, Passion, and Purpose: Tony Hsieh, the hip CEO of Zappos portrays how an alternative corporate culture that values happiness is a surefire method to achieve remarkable results.
An all-in-one guidebook for building and handling great organizations from start to finish, Reality Check dismisses dubious fads mushrooming in today’s business world. Instead, it pieces together his very best blog entries into a guidebook that makes for indispensable reading—a must-have volume that features his unique take on everything ranging from penning an effective e-mail to sucking up to prevent what he terms “bozo explosions”. In BizEd’s own words, “Don’t even think about trying to launch a startup without reading Guy Kawasaki’s Reality Check.”
Proactive. Perhaps the best word to describe Jason Fried’s new book, which rests the blueprint of the book on productive, efficient ways to succeed in business and gain exposure. With counterintuitive ideas that explain how plans can harm instead of help, to how outside investors are absolutely unnecessary, author Fried’s sage advice teaches how to make the most of what you have while ignoring the competition.
Fried shows how easy it is to get on your feet without being a workaholic, wasting time on meetings or elaborate paperwork or even having an office. Whether you are a hardcore entrepreneur or the owner of a small-business, whether you are stuck in a 9 to 5 job you hate or you have been a victim of corporate downsizing, this book is for you.
The Millionaire Fastlane: Crack the Code to Wealth and Live Rich for a Lifetime
For years, mainstream finance stalwarts have drilled the same chunk of beaten-down advice down our heads. “Go to school, land a plum job, save up, invest smart and retire rich after a life on incessant penny-pinching”. In other words, drag your heels down the well-trodden, proverbial “Slowlane” and you are sure to taste success.
Advice that entails putting your money on the volcanic stock market is nothing short of reckless-promising wealth in the dusk of one’s life while slaving away one’s adulthood. Instead of resting one’s precious financial plan on hope: hope that the stock market bounces back, that you land a job for keeps, author MJ DeMarco wisely advocates between the covers of his book how to ride the “Fastlane”, while making your dreams come true. This book tells you why:
- 401(k) s, mutual funds and day jobs will never help you hit gold when you’re young
- Most entrepreneurs fail, and how to stack the odds in your favor
- The age-old myth of “do what you love” will prevent you from getting rich8
- Compound interest is incapable of wealth acceleration.
Plus, learn the real laws that govern wealth and poverty, and how the rich strike gold….it has nothing in common with your monthly paycheck.
The Lean Startup
How Today’s Entrepreneurs Use Continuous Innovation to Create Radically Successful Businesses:
There are startups that succeed and there are those that fail. As author Eric Ries says in this book, many of these failures are preventable, and The Lean Startup Approach shows how, with its revolutionary techniques of launching products and building companies.
In Ries’s words, a startup is an organization which is dedicated to creating something new under uncertain conditions. To survive and penetrate this cloud of uncertainty and emerge successful is what the Lean Startup Approach advances. In support of corporate methods that are capital-wise and effectively leverage human creativity, this approach relies upon “validated learning”, scientific experiment and a large number of practices that shorten product development cycles, measuring actual progress without succumbing to the employment of vanity metrics, and above all, learning what the customer actually wants. In an age where companies are demanded to innovate, Ries’s book delivers.
How to Win Friends & Influence People
From the desk of Dale Carnegie comes this gem that has inspired thousands of famous people to carve their paths successfully both in their personal and professional lives. From fundamental methods of handling people to making them like you, changing them without arousing resentment and winning them over with your perspective, Carnegie’s time-tested advice is a necessary addition to your collection.
Rich Dad Poor Dad
What The Rich Teach Their Kids About Money That the Poor and Middle Class Do Not! : The story of Robert Kiyosaki and his two fathers, namely his father and the father of his best friend, who shaped and molded his perspective on money and investing. A splendid read that demarcates working for money and making your money work for you.
From paying brand-new employees to quit to helping employees grow on both personal and professional fronts, and making customer service the #1 priority of the entire company to seeking to change the world, these iconoclastic tenets are a religion at Zappos, that grosses over a billion dollars in merchandise annually. Life lessons from the expert himself who started small, but delivered bigger than ever.
Losing My Virginity
How I Survived, Had Fun, and Made a Fortune Doing Business My Way: Richard Branson has been grabbing eyeballs for decades now, and with this autobiographical venture that spans twenty five years of success in umpteen territories, the attention would be no different. His myriad ventures include his famous airline business, music, retail and a hundred others in various pockets of consumer interest.
Listen to the genius himself bare his soul in this outrageous but lovable autobiography that explains how Richard and his friends sowed the seeds for a capitalistic venture sans headquarters and management hierarchy. Started in the face of immense competition, Branson’s companies survived risks and reaped rewards, as can be seen in the rich and colorful stories that fill Losing My Virginity.
Good to Great
Why Some Companies Make the Leap…And Others Don’t: Jim Collins had pondered this question for years: what made some companies great and how they evolved mediocrity into superiority. What characteristics were held in their possession that caused them to rise up the ranks with such alacrity? With the help of touch benchmarks, Collins and his team identified and evaluated a group of companies that had achieved elite status.
Analyzing the determinants of their success, Collins elaborated his findings in this book, shedding light on every area of management. Shocking and surprising as Collins himself admits, these findings are a breakthrough of high consequence in the history of management strategy.
Outliers: The Story of Success
Malcolm Gladwell’s question that echoes the sentiments of numerous achievers today, what distinguishes high-achievers from the rest of us?In simple terms, focusing more on what these people are like rather than their background and the idiosyncrasies of their upbringing draws away our attention from the parameters that really matter: their culture, family and their generation. Stressing on the success of some software businesses and some of the most memorable icons of world culture, Outliers bothdelights and educates in one.
The Dip: A Little Book That Teaches You When to Quit (and When to Stick)
Seth Godin explains what sets a superstar apart from the rest of us: the capacity to eschew dead ends with ease, while staying motivated and on track.Contrary to the old adage, winners quit, and they quit fast and often. But they quit without guilt and for the right reasons, hence skilfully escaping any traps, guaranteeing long-term security and profit. This book will help you find the courage to develop these skills, learning when to quit and finding the hook that’s worthy of your time and effort.
The Ascent of Money: A Financial History of the World
Recanting the story behind the growth and development of our financial system, from its origins in Mesopotamia to its most recent upheavals, Niall Ferguson argues that economic history forms the roots for all history, establishing the idea that credit and debit are imperative as any innovation to the growth of civilization. With compelling insights into the rise and fall of money and power, Ferguson paints a picture of history we may never have thought of before.
The Personal MBA: Master the Art of Business
Josh Kaufman’s take on the making of a leader educates us on how eschewing business school and following a few very simple business tenets can skyrocket one to success is witty and makes for a compelling read with its honest values and precious business lessons.
Worth Every Penny: Build a Business That Thrills Your Customers and Still Charge What You’re Worth
Sarah Petty explores a radically different business model that is designed to reap maximum advantage over other big-shot stores and competitive markets. Her writing incorporates teaching skills that are strengthened by real-life experiences and anecdotes from business owners ranging the gamut from contractors to professional service providers.