An important part of a determined entrepreneur’s life is reading books on their trade. The right books can inspire you to confidently march on ahead in your journey while breaking through any barrier that presents itself along the way.
With that in mind, we’ve compiled a list of 15 books that have influenced some of the greatest entrepreneurs of our time.
#1 Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action
Author: Simon Sinek
Great leaders like Steve Jobs, Mahatma Gandhi, Martin Luther King, and the Wright Brothers understood the power of starting with why and used it to create monumental change. In this brilliant book, Simon Sinek tells you all about the philosophy of ‘starting with why’ and how you can use it to inspire people to take action.
#2 The Dilbert Principle: A Cubicle’s-Eye View of Bosses, Meetings, Management Fads & Other Workplace Afflictions
Author: Scott Adams
Using hilarious Dilbert comic strips, author and comic writer Scott Adams provides a funny and insightful view of incompetent bosses, management approaches, and other aspects of life at work. Sure to connect with anyone who’s ever worked at an office.
#3 The Startup Playbook: Secrets of the Fastest-Growing Startups from Their Founding Entrepreneurs
Author: David S. Kidder
In The Startup Playbook, New York Times bestselling author David Kidder discusses how today’s big businesses, like Linkedin and Paypal, came to be. He shares hard-hitting advice gathered from his interviews with some of the most influential businessmen of our time.
#4 Losing My Virginity: How I Survived, Had Fun, and Made a Fortune Doing Business My Way
Author: Richard Branson
In Losing My Virginity, Richard Branson recounts his experiences of starting a business, living the life of an entrepreneur, launching several businesses, and just living life to the fullest — valuable lessons from a highly successful entrepreneur.
#5 The Hard Thing About Hard Things: Building a Business When There Are No Easy Answers
Author: Ben Horowitz
The Hard Thing About Hard Things is a fantastic resource on building and running a successful startup. Horowitz discusses the real challenges of starting a company and provides actual know-how on dealing with these challenges successfully.
#6 To Sell is Human: The Surprising Truth About Moving Others
Author: Daniel H. Pink
In To Sell is Human, author Daniel H. Pink argues that selling is an integral part of everyone’s lives. Whether you’re making a case for buying a new sofa at home or pitching an idea to your company’s investors; you are making a sale. This book teaches you to embrace this power and use it to your advantage.
Authors: Jason Fried, David Heinemeier Hansson
Rework is a radical business book that goes against conventional business wisdom and even shows how it could harm your business. In its place, the book suggests new and counter-intuitive ways of running a business successfully, making this a refreshing and thought-provoking read.
#8 Switch: How to Change Things when Change is Hard
Authors: Chip Heath, Dan Heath
Change is hard for people to deal with. In Switch, Chip and Dan Heath uncover the pattern that underlies every transformative change, and explain how you can use it to cause the change you desire.
#9 The Effective Executive: The Definitive Guide to Getting the Right Things Done
Author: Peter F. Drucker
The Effective Executive is a timeless classic for managers. It focuses on business effectiveness with a result-oriented approach and discusses the traits of an effective manager.
#10 Tribal Leadership: Leveraging Natural Groups to Build a Thriving Organization
Authors: Dave Logan, John King, Halee Fischer-Wright
Tribal Leadership talks about the existence of tribes within an organization, and how, as a manager, you can interact with each tribe in order to help them maximize their productivity and performance.
#11 The Innovator’s Dilemma: The Revolutionary Book That Will Change the Way You Do Business
Author: Clayton M. Christensen
Making all the right moves may actually take your business down. This radical idea lies at the core of this revolutionary and provocative book on American businesses. The book’s wisdom is too important to ignore.
#12 Purple Cow: Transform Your Business by Being Remarkable
Author: Seth Godin
You know how cows look. But imagine if you spotted a purple cow. You’d immediately sit up and take notice. This idea is at the heart of Seth Godin’s book, Purple Cow. The author uses the purple cow analogy to make a case for building products and services that are remarkable.
#13 The Lean Startup: How Today’s Entrepreneurs Use Continuous Innovation to Create Radically Successful Businesses
Author: Eric Ries
The Lean Startup approach is catching on among businesses across the globe. It’s a new way of doing business and this book serves as an excellent guide to learning about and adopting that approach for your business.
#14 The Obstacle is the Way: The Timeless Art of Turning Trials into Triumph
Author: Ryan Holiday
Obstacles are a part and parcel of not just every business, but life as well. Most people get stuck in a rut when faced with obstacles. But there’s a way to turn an obstacle into a new path, to turn adversity into advantage. This book shows you how.
#15 Business Adventures: Twelve Classic Tales from the World of Wall Street
Author: John Brooks
Business Adventures is a compilation of gripping tales of business and corporate life in America — and it’s quite a ride. The tales are vividly described, making the book as entertaining a read as it’s informative.