33 Best Books for Entrepreneurs to Read in 2020
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Many people want to be entrepreneurs.
The popularity of TV shows like, “Shark Tank” plainly show that!
People want to forge themselves into a better version of themselves and achieve wild success.
After all, entrepreneurs have many good habits that people should want to emulate. Entrepreneurs are creative, successful, hard-working, resilient, passionate, flexible and have a strong sense-of-self.
All great of which are great attitudes that the entrepreneur books on this page can help you emulate.
What You Will Learn
- What can an Entrepreneur Book Teach Me?
- What is an Entrepreneur?
- Entrepreneur Habits
- Best Entrepreneur Books for 2020
- 1. The Lean Startup: How Today's Entrepreneurs Use Continuous Innovation to Create Radically Successful Businesses by Eric Ries
- 2. Ignore Everybody: and 39 Other Keys to Creativity by Hugh MacLeod
- 3. Rework by Jason Fried
- 4. Virtual Freedom: How to Work with Virtual Staff to Buy More Time, Become More Productive, and Build Your Dream Business by Chris Ducker
- 5. Publish and Profit: A 5-Step System For Attracting Paying Coaching And Consulting Clients, Traffic And Leads, Product Sales, And Speaking Engagements by Mike Koenigs
- 6. The New Freedom: Ordinary People Are Living Extraordinary Lives & So Can You! by Rob Cubbon
- 7. Talent Is Overrated: What Really Separates World-Class Performers from Everybody Else by Geoff Colvin
- 8. The War of Art: Break Through the Blocks and Win your Inner Creative Battles by Steven Pressfield
- 9. The Daily Entrepreneur: 33 Success Habits for Small Business Owners, Freelancers and Aspiring 9-to-5 Escape Artists by S.J. Scott and Rebecca Livermore
- 10. The Hard Thing About Hard Things: Building a Business When There Are No Easy Answers by Ben Horowitz
- 11. Tribe of Mentors: Short Life Advice from the Best in the World by Tim Ferriss
- 12. The Entrepreneur Roller Coaster: Why Now Is the Time to #JoinTheRide by Darren Hardy
- 13. The Power of Full Engagement: Managing Energy, Not Time, is the Key to High Performance and Personal Renewal by Jim Loehr and Tony Schwartz
- 14. Steal Like an Artist: 10 Things Nobody Told You About Being Creative by Austin Kleon
- 15. Work Smarter: 500+ Online Resources Today’s Top Entrepreneurs Use to Increase Productivity and Achieve Their Goals by Nick Loper
- 16. The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference by Malcolm Gladwell
- 17. Make Money, Live Wealthy: 75 Successful Entrepreneurs Share the 10 Simple Steps to True Wealth by Austin Netzley
- 18. Inspire! The Art of Persuasive Leadership: How to Influence, Establish Trust, and Gain Respect [Audiobook] by Patrick King
- 19. Edgy Conversations: How Ordinary People Can Achieve Outrageous Success by Dan Waldschmidt
- 20. Discover Your True North: The Leadership Classic Expanded for Today's Leaders by Bill George
- 21. Creativity, Inc.: Overcoming the Unseen Forces That Stand in the Way of True Inspiration by Ed Catmull and Amy Wallace.
- 22. The Warren Buffett Way by Robert G. Hagstrom
- 23. The Startup Playbook: Secrets of the Fastest-Growing Startups from Their Founding Entrepreneurs by David Kidder
- 24. The E-Myth Revisited: Why Most Small Businesses Don't Work and What to Do About It by Michael E. Gerber
- 25. Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future by Ashlee Vance
- 26. The Personal MBA: Master the Art of Business by Josh Kaufman
- 27. Extreme Ownership: How U.S. Navy SEALs Lead and Win by Jocko Willink
- 28. The Compound Effect: Jumpstart Your Income, Your Life, Your Success by Darren Hardy
- 29. Tools of Titans: The Tactics, Routines, and Habits of Billionaires, Icons, and World-Class Performers by Tim Ferriss
- 30. The Entrepreneur Mind: 100 Essential Beliefs, Characteristics, and Habits of Elite Entrepreneurs by Kevin D. Johnson
- 31. Crushing It: How Great Entrepreneurs Build Their Business and Influence-and How You Can, Too by Gary Vaynerchuk
- 32. The Motivation Myth: How High Achievers Really Set Themselves Up to Win by Jeff Haden
- 33. Zero to One: Notes on Startups, or How to Build the Future by Peter Thiel and Blake Masters
- A Smarter You in 15 Minutes?
- “Must Read” books for entrepreneurs?
What can an Entrepreneur Book Teach Me?
If you are an entrepreneur or want to be one, the 33 entrepreneurial books reviewed on this page are designed to help those budding entrepreneurs reach their goals.
Some of the books listed here are entrepreneur books for beginners. That will give you the tools you need to succeed.
Other books on this list are more intermediate levels. They are ‘must-read’ books for entrepreneurs, to help them stay ahead of their competition and stay competitive.
All the books on this list will make great gifts for entrepreneurs because these are the books that have been proven in the test of time. They have shown up again-and-again on every popular list of best entrepreneur books.
However, before we dig into this list of top entrepreneur books, let’s take a moment to discuss what it means to be an entrepreneur so that we are all on the “same page” when it comes to the difference between a “businessman” and an “entrepreneur”.
What is an Entrepreneur?
Many people think of entrepreneurs ONLY as those who start their own businesses, wear suits and are perhaps featured on the “Shark Tank” or running a startup company.
I think that definition of an entrepreneur is far too narrow.
By my definition, anyone is an entrepreneur who is trying to make something happen in business that is outside of the normal 9-5.
This includes WAHM's (work at home mom's…and dad's), artists, writers, editors, and any other sort of side hustler. If you bust your butt to create something that makes money in your free time -you are an entrepreneur, and these entrepreneur books can help you be better at it.
An entrepreneur can also be someone who has a 9-5. As long as they are also being creative, trying new thing and passionate about improving their work and themselves.
Before we get to the entrepreneur books. Let’s make a quick list of entrepreneur habits to see if you or your loved ones are (or could be) entrepreneurs.
Well, that is enough from me about entrepreneurs. Now it is time to find you the best books about entrepreneurs. Enjoy!
Best Entrepreneur Books for 2020
Note: These entrepreneur books are all worth reading. The #1 book on this list may not be any better than the #14 book. Do not read anything into some books being “higher” than others.
1. The Lean Startup: How Today's Entrepreneurs Use Continuous Innovation to Create Radically Successful Businesses by Eric Ries
While most startups fail, a lot of those failures can be prevented. This book offers a new approach that changes the way companies are created and products are launched. Every startup has one thing in common, they want to get through uncertainty to find a path that leads to a sustainable business, but few accomplish this feat.
The approach offered in this book helps companies that are smart with their money and use human creativity wisely grow. The lessons presented enable companies to change their direction with their agility and make changes in their plans according to increase their chances of success.
The Lean Startup doesn't create elaborate business plans. Instead it offers entrepreneurs a way to continuously test their vision and adapt to their own needs before it’s too late. Reis lays out a scientific approach to creating prosperous startups in an age where companies have to be exceptionally innovative to survive.
Readers have found that this book is honest in addressing situations that are commonly faced by startups. The author's intellectual curiosity and his pursuit of excellence are clear in his writing. Anyone who is thinking about innovation or product development can benefit from reading this book.
2. Ignore Everybody: and 39 Other Keys to Creativity by Hugh MacLeod
In this book, Hugh MacLeod unveils his 40 keys to creativity that he came up with beginning as a young professional. He talks about his sharpest insights, offers clever cartoons, and provides useful advice.
For example, he focuses on the point that if you are starting up a new business, you can't follow in anyone else's footsteps. Existing business models are not effective. You need to be a thought leader and forge your own path. This unique path to success is what leads to entrepreneurial success.
This is a useful book to read, especially if you want to learn about establishing creativity. It offers quick tips and ideas for success that are also easy to understand. Macleod gives advice without adding unnecessary fluff. Yet his writing is also funny, realistic and relatable.
The key point of this book, to forge your own path, is simple. But this simplicity is both effective and more efficient than other books that go into too much detail, taking up your valuable time with minutia.
3. Rework by Jason Fried
Most business books provide readers with endless instructions on writing a business plan, looking closely at their competition, finding investors, etc. However, this book is different.
It describes why these topics are not helpful when it comes to creating a sustainable business. Instead, the author argues that what you need is a productive work ethic and exposure. Written in an inspiring way, this book debunks common business myths.
Jason Fried offers a straightforward book. The content that is easy to understand. You will find yourself nodding your head and going “that’s true” quite a bit while reading.
Rework is a worthwhile book for anyone who has dreams of making it on their own. Whether you are a die-hard entrepreneur to or an artist who doesn’t want to be starving and struggling anymore.
This optimistic book can inspire hope in future entrepreneurs. The author makes sure that the reader is grounded in the simplest, yet most effective, principles. The advice in this book applies to starting up a business,but can also be applied to creating a better life in general.
4. Virtual Freedom: How to Work with Virtual Staff to Buy More Time, Become More Productive, and Build Your Dream Business by Chris Ducker
Entrepreneurs often think that in order to be successful, they have to do everything themselves. They try to make a successful business by running a one-man show. This is often why people don't pursue their business dreams- they find it too daunting to start.
In Virtual Freedom, outsourcing expert Chris Ducker explains how to get the help you need using affordable resources. Entrepreneurs don't have to do everything alone when they discover the power of creating a team of virtual employees to help launch their businesses.
Virtual Freedom is a step-by-step guide to build a business working with virtual employees. Drucker focuses on business growth and explains in detail everything you need to understand, from delegating jobs to managing virtual assistants. It provides the knowledge and tools that are needed to build the business you want with a virtual staff.
Understanding the principles of staff and many of his suggestions is the key to taking a single person side hustle and turning it in a viable business. This book is the authoritative guide to finding and managing a virtual staff. I have personally used it as a blueprint in hiring two virtual assistants and a part-time staff writer.
This is a great resource for people who have never considered doing this before. What makes this book unique is that it is great for beginners as well as people who already have a virtual staff. There are several tips that can be used, even after working with a virtual assistant.
5. Publish and Profit: A 5-Step System For Attracting Paying Coaching And Consulting Clients, Traffic And Leads, Product Sales, And Speaking Engagements by Mike Koenigs
It is tough to gain a competitive edge in this chaotic world.
In this book, Koenigs claims that what people need to succeed is a bestselling book. By writing a book, people can connect with their target audience and build credibility in their market. He points to the fact that books have been used in every industry for hundreds of years to make people and concepts well-known.
In Publish & Profit, Koenigs leads his readers through a step-by-step process that has helped his clients write a profitable book. His clients range from ordinary business owners to entrepreneurs and professionals on the upswing of success. If you follow the process laid out in this book, it can work for you, too.
This book is easy to read and provides information that can be used right away to help grow your business.
Though, public speaking and sales is not my area of expertise (and I do not desire them to be). I can attest to the fact, that having a bestselling book brings people to you in a way that few other things could. I have been approached with many speaking and sales offers I turn down.
Rob’s book is about doing something outside of the box for a career in order to obtain happiness in life. By being an entrepreneur, you can free yourself from the typical 9 to 5 schedule and work anywhere you want without boundaries.
The New Freedom aims to free people from employment. It teaches people how to make a new life online, create your own schedule and do work that is meaningful for you. It provides the reader with actionable strategies to make their life as a professional more enjoyable.
Rob details his in-depth interviews with recently successful entrepreneurs such as Justin Cooke from Empire Flippers, Shayna Oliveira, who teaches English as a second language online, and Nora Dunn from The Professional Hobo.
Readers will walk away from this book knowing what essential items they will need when working from home. They will have a new approach to living a happier life. And have a path to live a life with fewer complications.
Readers have found that this book is a gem when it comes to online entrepreneurship. Rob has a great way of telling people who are just getting started exactly what they need to hear in order to make them comfortable with their decision to work online.
He also gives them the motivation they need to get them started. Rob’s tone is sincere and down-to-earth, and his information and advice are believable, because they are honest and from the heart.
For full disclosure, Rob Cubbon has been an online friend of mine for quite a few years. He has always been honest and straight-forward and I believe that if I read this book and did not know him, my review would be exactly the same.
7. Talent Is Overrated: What Really Separates World-Class Performers from Everybody Else by Geoff Colvin
Are people are not born with an innate ability to do something great? According to Talent is Overrated, the answer to that question is a resounding, “NO!”
Rather, greatness comes from practice and perseverance that is perfected over decades. Additionally, the key is how you practice, analyze your progress, and learn from your mistakes that make you the most successful. In this way, the book reminds me of many of my ideas from my book on best learning practices.
Talent is Overrated includes many scientific and real-world examples. Colvin shows that when people use the right kind of effort, they can improve at anything. Colvin's mindset and practical advice are meant to change the reader's way of thinking about their job and career and inspire people to achieve more.
8. The War of Art: Break Through the Blocks and Win your Inner Creative Battles by Steven Pressfield
This book talks about knocking down the barriers to success that people may encounter. The War of Art pinpoints the internal enemy that people face and explains how to achieve success despite the naysayers and roadblocks. While this book was written for writers, many others have embraced its message, from business entrepreneurs to actors and dancers.
This book is a quick read and leaves people feeling inspired. Pressfield, one of my favorite fiction writers, writes his nonfiction with the same skill and intensity as his fiction books. The War of Art is full of actionable advice. It is practical and makes sense, no matter what area of your life you are trying to apply the information.
9. The Daily Entrepreneur: 33 Success Habits for Small Business Owners, Freelancers and Aspiring 9-to-5 Escape Artists by S.J. Scott and Rebecca Livermore
This is a great book for people who want to become a freelancer or are looking for a way to make some extra money. Most entrepreneurs hope to make enough money to make it on their own, but often that expectation is not met.
However, the problems that entrepreneurs face are common, meaning that a lot of people experience them. This also means that people have found ways to overcome them. Their secret is that they build specific daily habits.
In the book, the author talks about the power that developing habits can have and shows the reader how to use these habits to overcome common challenges. This book is unique from others because it is organized according to the challenges that everyone faces each day. There are 33 life-changing habits described in this book that will increase your ability to overcome obstacles and meet your goals.
Readers recommend this book to entrepreneurs who want to include effective methods in their schedules to get more out of each day that streamlines productivity. The ideas are supported by evidence and examples, allowing readers to relate to the material.
Full disclosure: This is a book that I co-wrote. I feel this book has some great information for readers, but I did not write the above review since I hate being overly self promotional. I clipped this from someone else review of my work and reprinted it here.
10. The Hard Thing About Hard Things: Building a Business When There Are No Easy Answers by Ben Horowitz
Ben Horowitz, a successful entrepreneur, offers critical advice in this book on running a start-up company. He includes practical wisdom to help manage common problems that business school doesn’t teach and gives real-world advice.
Horowitz analyzes the problems that leaders run into on a regular basis in this book and shares the knowledge that he has gotten from developing and running his own companies. He knows everything about owning and running a business from keeping a CEO mentality to knowing when it is time to shut down.
This book is engaging and entertaining as the author uses his favorite rap lyrics throughout to share his business lessons. He makes serious subjects such as firing friends into a more light-hearted and easy read.
Horowitz uses his humor and straight talk in this book that is invaluable for people who are just starting their own business as well as veteran entrepreneurs.
His humbling experiences can help people at any level. Readers have found this book to be refreshing because the concepts are not dumbed down. There is useful advice given throughout this book for building relationships and working with other people in many situations.
11. Tribe of Mentors: Short Life Advice from the Best in the World by Tim Ferriss
Tribe of Mentors is a compilation of ideas from some of the world's most successful entrepreneurs.
It is great for people who are questioning their path in life or are looking to start new or get a new sense of motivation. Some of the subjects that this book addresses include effective morning routines, the best purchases you can make that are less than $100, how to achieve a work-life balance, and how to sort through all of the information that you take in every day.
This book is not 100% about productivity and time management, but enough of the ideas of the experts in this book touch on these subjects to make it a valuable read for people wanting to become more productive.
Some readers dislike the format of this book. It doesn't have a flow or have an obvious sense of order, rather it is the responses he got from people he reached out to when asking these questions. This seems to make the book a bit choppy.
However, it is still full of useful information that can relate to a lot of people. While not every reader will be able to relate to every part of this book, there is something in this book for every reader.
Lots of interesting stuff in this book. Even the stuff unrelated to entrepreneurship and business is still fun and educational. Great lessons from the world’s most famous and most successful people, and certainly an book on entrepreneurship that every wannabe entrepreneur should mine for every deep thought Ferris shares.
12. The Entrepreneur Roller Coaster: Why Now Is the Time to #JoinTheRide by Darren Hardy
In this book, Darren Hardy explores why most small businesses fail. He found that the reasons were different than any previously recorded reasons.
Failure was actually not caused by outside factors. Failure is actually internal. The unexpected emotional roller coaster that an entrepreneur goes through is the largest cause of entrepreneur failures.
This book will prepare anyone for the ups and downs of entrepreneurship. It will give warnings and prepares future entrepreneurs to handle doubters and naysayers. It also prepares people for the pains of rejection and failure and provides a guide to move past the obstacles lead to the failure of 66% of new businesses.
After reading this book, you will know the best strategies that the author has collected from successful people, covering the four essential skills that are needed for success, which are recruiting, sales, leadership, and productivity.
This entrepreneur book is great for people who want to own their own business but are scared of the unknown. It is also great for people who are currently running their own business but want to be sure to stay successful, or even take it to the next level.
This book to be motivating and informational. A lot of the information in this book is not common things that one would come across while researching online, they are first-hand accounts of success and are as interesting and exciting to read as they are informational.
13. The Power of Full Engagement: Managing Energy, Not Time, is the Key to High Performance and Personal Renewal by Jim Loehr and Tony Schwartz
This bestselling book has helped thousands of people balance the stress of their work life and home life and sustain high performance even when they have daunting workloads and constant demands on their time. This book is tough-minded yet gentle and gives the reader inspiration to do it all.
The authors recognize that our digital age is rushed, fast-paced, and relentless. Facing full workloads, people try to do as much as possible every day, despite not having enough time. Time management is not possible.
Rather, this book focuses on managing energy instead of time. In order to both perform at a high level and stay healthy and happy. This practical book is based on science and gives a reasonable approach to manage your energy both while at work and while at home.
Loehr and company lay out key training principles for their readers. They give a step-by-step program to balance energy, mobilize their sources of energy, expand their capacity, and create lasting changes.
Readers appreciate this book's ability to give people a guide to becoming more engaged in their lives. A logical connection is made between athletic training and training for life in general that makes sense to any reader who is looking to improve their life.
14. Steal Like an Artist: 10 Things Nobody Told You About Being Creative by Austin Kleon
This book focuses on creativity and the fact that everyone has a creative side to them somewhere. This guide provides a positive message for the reader along with a graphic look and illustrations, examples, and exercises that will allow readers to connect with their artistic side.
Austin Kleon, the author of this book, had a speech go viral when he was asked to talk to college students in upstate New York. He focused on the ten things that he wished he knew when he was starting out. After this talk became so popular, Kleon further analyzed his own ideas to write this book.
This book is not only inspiring, but it is also original and practical. It is entertaining and filled with formerly unknown truths about creativity.
The author argues that nothing is original, so it is best to embrace influence, generate ideas, and re-imagine things in order to discover your own path. Readers are urged to follow their interests, stay out of debt, and make room for your creative self to become daring with your imagination.
Readers have found that this book offers helpful advice while also being a fun and easy read. The author explains all of his points well and gives clear examples so readers are able to relate to the text. This small book packs in a lot of information that is not easily found elsewhere.
15. Work Smarter: 500+ Online Resources Today’s Top Entrepreneurs Use to Increase Productivity and Achieve Their Goals by Nick Loper
Overly successful people always get more done than others. What are the secret weapons of the people who are always on top of things and ahead of the game? In this “entrepreneur resource” book Loper shares with us many of the tools that help make super-productive people so darn productive.
Extremely productive people these people are able to think smarter, not harder. Everyone has the same amount of time in every day, and the tips in this book help readers make the most of that time, by using their favorite combinations of 500 time tested online tools.
Over 800 of today's most successful entrepreneurs came together to create this guide. Included in this book are the real tools that are used by superstar business leaders each day. Readers are given access to over 500 resources to help them grow their business from the ground up.
Among other things, Loper talks about productivity, team management, communication, and project management to give personal insights on how to use some of the best and most popular tools to gain success.
Many of the resources that are offered in this book are free or come with a free trial for the reader to test out. These resources allow people to protect their time and save money while also protecting their investment.
Readers have found that the bullet-point format of this book is helpful and easy to read. The value in this book is able to prevent people from running into frustrations that may often be met if the resources in this book are not discovered.
16. The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference by Malcolm Gladwell
This book refers to the moment when an idea or trend crosses a threshold into becoming viral. One action can quickly become a movement in these days of social media.
This bestselling book explores and illuminates the tipping point phenomenon and is already makes changes to the way people worldwide think about selling their products and spreading ideas.
Readers have found this to be a solid book for all types of businesses. It helps people become aware of the different factors that go into making something into a movement or making something go viral. This awareness is great for people who own a company and want to grow their business.
This book uses the advice of 75 successful entrepreneurs to help people who are overwhelmed in their lives. The experts in this book are iconic investors, successful entrepreneurs, bestselling authors, and financial planners, but they didn't start out like that. These people are living proof that anyone can ultimately be successful.
Readers will walk away from this book knowing the simple actions that they need to take to achieve success. This simple step-by-step guide helps readers take control of their business and their wealth.
Readers have found that the principles in this book can be applied to any aspect of life. It is a well-rounded book that is motivating to the reader and teaches people how to invest in themselves.
18. Inspire! The Art of Persuasive Leadership: How to Influence, Establish Trust, and Gain Respect [Audiobook] by Patrick King
Inspire might be right for you if you want to learn how to motivate people better and be a more effective leader. It teaches people to be better at persuasion and winning people over while still maximizing efficiency and being respected.
King argues that all problems can be linked back to the people who are involved. This book teaches readers how to deal with people and quickly gain their support. The author looks deep into psychology to find ways to make a win-win situation every time. He addresses the human elements that are needed in leadership and techniques to make other people share your same goal.
Readers have found that this is a great book to help learn how to deal with people who have opposing values or opinions. It is easy to listen to while in the car during a commute or even on a lunch break. There is a lot of value provided in this leadership book.
The standard advice that is given to people who want to be successful is often ineffective. You work hard all day, but often find yourself no closer to success than you were just last week. This book reveals the truth, which is that it is not your actions that are holding you back.
Instead, it is who you are. Your own mind is keeping you from success, which has started this Edgy conversation.
This honest book does not hold back in its discussion about what it takes to be successful. Based on the stories of hundreds of regular people in all types of industries, this book illustrates the achievements of people who have created greatness for themselves.
I admit this is not your typical “entrepreneur book” I think this book is (and the book above) are important for entrepreneurs because a big part of success (or failure) as an entrepreneur is based on how well you can convince others of your vision.
Edgy Conversations gives you the tools to communicate your entrepreneurial vision to others and help them get behind you and your vision. An essential key to becoming an entrepreneur.
This best-selling book helps readers become an authentic leader by discovering their “True North”. Based on interviews with over 200 leaders, this book provides insight from authentic global leaders who are diverse, global, and contemporary.
It includes relevant case studies and personal stories to teach readers how to become the leaders that they want to be. It even includes helpful exercises throughout the book to help engage the reader.
Readers appreciate the concrete and comprehensive program that this book explains for becoming a real leader. It is also very helpful that the author gives examples of how to chart one's path to leadership.
Once you discover the purpose of your leadership, you'll find the true leader inside you. This book shows you how to use your natural leadership abilities to inspire and empower others to excellence in today's complex global world.
Discover Your True North enables you to become the leader you were born to be and stay on track of your True North.
21. Creativity, Inc.: Overcoming the Unseen Forces That Stand in the Way of True Inspiration by Ed Catmull and Amy Wallace.
Creativity Inc. is great for managers who are striving for originality and want to make their employees more successful. The author focuses on building a creative culture while also having a company that comes up with the best ideas as possible.
Written by one of the co-founders of Pixar Animation Studios, this book is written in a joyous way that comes off as almost storytelling. Readers have found that it has emotional authenticity using Pixar movies as a lesson in what creativity actually is.
Catmull talks about the specific techniques that have made Pixar so popular and profitable. He has found that the unique environment that Pixar has built that is based on leadership and management philosophies that work to protect the creative process and elude convention are a major part of their success.
Readers have found this book to be enjoyable to read and full of useful information. It is an inspiring book that can help managers in any industry.
22. The Warren Buffett Way by Robert G. Hagstrom
Warren Buffett became a billionaire and investment professional by viewing companies as businesses instead of numbers on a stock screen.
This book gives investors an in-depth look at the investment and business strategies that he used to achieve success. The author also draws on the subject of behavioral finance to explain how investors can move past obstacles that prevent them from being successful.
After reading this book, people will know how to think like a long-term investor, overcome obstacles, and behave rationally in the market. The psychological foundations that are addressed in this book give the readers the best guide yet for understanding the principles and the behaviors that Buffet has used to become the best investor of this generation.
This is another book that is not “technically” an entrepreneurial book.
Although it discusses many ways that Buffett has achieved success as an entrepreneur, this book focuses more on the financial aspects. However, every entrepreneur needs to have an understanding of money and investment opportunities.
While many books on investing and books on personal finance might give entrepreneurs the “money skills’ they need to be successful. I thought it apt to include a book about one of the greatest financial entrepreneurs of all time.
This book is a great encouragement for any potential financial entrepreneur to do their own thing and not listen to the fads of the day.
23. The Startup Playbook: Secrets of the Fastest-Growing Startups from Their Founding Entrepreneurs by David Kidder
This book helps new businesses succeed. It details information from many business insiders and shares the unknown experiences of some of the world's most powerful entrepreneurs and CEOs, letting the reader in on their most treasured advice.
Summaries of 40 in-person interviews with founders give readers major insights into what it takes to build some of the most well-known companies today from the ground up.
This is a great book for readers who are either just starting out or they have been working on their business for quite some time. Readers have found this book to be useful because of its richness in real-world cases. It is filled with important business lessons and practical advice.
24. The E-Myth Revisited: Why Most Small Businesses Don't Work and What to Do About It by Michael E. Gerber
I have not “really” rated these entrepreneurial books on how much they can possibly affect someone’s success or failure as an entrepreneur. However, if I did this book would be in strong contention for the #1 spot.
This revised edition of the original bestseller debunks the myths about starting up a business. Michael Gerber, a small business consultant and author, has years of experience in the field which allows him to point out to the reader how various factors can get in the way of having a successful business.
E-Myth Revisited guides the reader through the life cycle of a business and shows how to apply the important lessons of franchising to any business, even if the business is not a franchise.
This book helps readers grow their businesses in a productive and confident way. Readers have found that this book gets straight to the point in an impactful way.
25. Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future by Ashlee Vance
In this book, Ashlee Vance gives the reader a look into the life of Silicon Valley's most daring entrepreneur. The book begins with the entrepreneur's journey starting from a rough childhood in South Africa to the height of the global business world.
This book tells the turbulent stories of Musk's global companies such as PayPal, Tesla Motors, and SolarCity, and describes a man who has sparked new levels of innovation.
Using Musk's story, Vance explores the question of whether or not a nation of inventors can continue to be successful with global competition. He argues that Musk has dedicated his life more than any other entrepreneur in the modern day to inventing a future that is rich and far-reaching.
This is possibly another book some people may find as an odd inclusion for a collection of entrepreneur books.
But Musk is such the perfect stereotype of the modern entrepreneur, you can learn a lot by simply studying all the wonderful things he has accomplished in his life.
Being a story about a very interesting guy this book is a much more entertaining read than many of the entrepreneurial “guides” on this list. It is entertaining, but I feel you will also learn a lot about entrepreneurship also.
26. The Personal MBA: Master the Art of Business by Josh Kaufman
Business school is expensive and truly does not teach students as much as they will learn in the real world when they are actually working. This book is written by the founder of PersonalMBA.com, which is an alternative to wasting time in business school.
In this book, Kaufman shares the essentials of business development in one complete volume. The Personal MBA teaches readers the most valuable business lessons through simple and memorable models that are easily applied to real-world situations.
This book gives readers a clear and straightforward understanding of what business is about. It is a great read for anyone because it talks about the nature of human endeavor along with how the world functions.
It covers a full spectrum of business topics and makes them approachable to anyone who is willing to learn them.
Recounting a mission of a SEAL team unit, this book talks about how leadership is the most important factor in success. This book explains the mindset that SEALs must have to accomplish their hardest combat missions. It shows how to apply these principles and mindsets to any team or organization.
Each chapter talks about specific topics such as “leading up the chain” and “cover and move”. Extreme Ownership clearly explains these concepts are, what makes them important, and how to apply them to any leadership environment.
This powerful book uses compelling narrative and instruction to help revolutionize business management and the challenges that leaders face to effectively lead and win.
This is a very structured book. It allows readers a birds-eye view about eye-opening leadership experiences and teachable moments endured by the United States premier fighting force, the Navy SEALs.
28. The Compound Effect: Jumpstart Your Income, Your Life, Your Success by Darren Hardy
The Compound Effect is a book that can improve both your entrepreneurial, health and personal development success.
The premise is simple—the small, everyday actions that you take ultimately determine your success in life. If your day is filled with self-destructive habits, this will have a negative, compounding effect on your life. However, if you commit to doing daily, goal-specific habits, then success isn’t that hard to achieve.
The message of The Compound Effect is similar to other books like Essentialism, The One Thing and The Slight Edge. When you have a “zero excuses allowed” policy for important habits, you accomplish amazing things over the long term.
One of my favorite parts is a simple formula Darren uses:
The ideas in this book are not complicated, yet strangely enough, I think they are profound.
Together with the books mentioned in the paragraph above they form a “must read” core of productivity books every single entrepreneur should read, understand and make a part of his/her lifestyle.
29. Tools of Titans: The Tactics, Routines, and Habits of Billionaires, Icons, and World-Class Performers by Tim Ferriss
Tim Ferris, the host of The Tim Ferriss Show podcast, wrote this compilation as a notebook of the best points of his in-depth interviews with business professionals. He lays out tips and life lessons that his well-known guests have offered on the show as some reasons behind their success.
What makes this book different from others is that it focuses on the minute details of successful people. For example, what is a good example of an effective morning routine? What are some common wastes of time?
This book for entrepreneurs has some very unique and original insights. However, some people do complain because of the episodic nature of the sections.
There is not a single narrative of how to succeed as an entrepreneur. But in many ways, this is more honest, because in reality there is not a single “right” ay to achieve success.
Personally I love the “pick-and-choose” natures of the chapters. I can learn from the people who inspire me and just skip the chapters of those who I do not believe have anything important to say.
30. The Entrepreneur Mind: 100 Essential Beliefs, Characteristics, and Habits of Elite Entrepreneurs by Kevin D. Johnson
In this compelling book written for both novice and veteran entrepreneurs, Johnson pinpoints 100 key lessons that every entrepreneur has to learn in order to be successful. These lessons make up the fundamental beliefs, characteristics, and habits that all elite entrepreneurs have in common.
Readers have found that this is a must-read book because of its ability to teach people how to think. It includes stories from the author's personal journey that are both easy to follow and easy to apply to any business situation.
This book is especially great for those who do not have a traditional business background but are looking to grow their startup into a household name.
31. Crushing It: How Great Entrepreneurs Build Their Business and Influence-and How You Can, Too by Gary Vaynerchuk
This book offers lessons and inspiration taken from the experiences of dozens of entrepreneurs who decided against taking the predictable corporate path in order to pursue their dreams of building thriving businesses and personal brands.
I love this book. Vaynerchuck’s original hit “Crush It” was an eye-opener for me personally.
In, Crush It, Gary insisted that an energetic personal brand is a crucial element to entrepreneurial success. I appreciate his frank and sometimes brusque manners and attitude. Although I do understand why some people might be put off by his style.
Crush It has some of the same, but goes far deeper into what it takes to achieve entrepreneurial success than his 2009 bestseller. Gary also shares the principles of business that have changed over the years as well as those that have remained timeless and dependable.
Readers enjoy the stories in this book from other entrepreneurs who have succeeded in their business ventures by following the principles in the original edition of this book. Readers appreciate the lessons on current trends such as social media platforms that allow people in any type of business to expand their personal brand.
This book is written in a lively and practical manner and is able to inspire readers to amplify their personal brand. For readers with more experience, this book highlights some of the lesser-known differences in modern-day business and provides new tips and tweaks that have been proven to enhance common strategies.
32. The Motivation Myth: How High Achievers Really Set Themselves Up to Win by Jeff Haden
In this book, Jeff Haden makes the argument that motivation, as we think about it, is a myth. Motivation is actually a result of a process, not a cause. As the book progresses, the reader is taught how to reframe their thinking about how motivation relates to success.
Part if the reason I live this book is that it reaffirms my own thinking on motivation. If you need to be motivated to succeed, you will never succeed LONG-TERM. It is better to set up a system that cannot fail rather than rely on something as ephemeral as motivation.
Haden recognizes that people are anxious at the beginning of a big goal. They are unsure and scared of how to proceed. He offers practical advice that can be used by anyone to stop stalling and start pursuing their dreams.
Overall, this book teaches that success isn't only for certain people. It is possible for anyone to be successful if they understand the real nature of motivation. This inspiring book is eye-opening for anyone, no matter what they are working on in their life at the moment.
33. Zero to One: Notes on Startups, or How to Build the Future by Peter Thiel and Blake Masters
In this book, legendary entrepreneur and investor Peter Thiel talk about how information technology has quickly improved, but progress should not be limited to computers. Progress can be achieved in all industries. Progress can only come from the important skill of learning how to think for yourself.
When you do something new, you are adding value to the world that it has not seen before. Tomorrow’s champions will escape competition because their business ideas will be unique.
Readers appreciate the optimistic view that is shown in this book. It also explores a new way of thinking about innovation, leading readers to find value in places where they did not expect to find it.
A Smarter You in 15 Minutes?
If you enjoy reading nonfiction books, then I encourage you tocheck out the Blinkist app.
Blinkist is an interesting concept…
Blinkist summarized over 2,000 of the bestselling books and put them into condensed 7 to 15 minute reads (or “blinks”). The idea here is to give you the key insights and important lessons — without wasting your time on pointless information.
Blinkist book summaries are perfect for anyone who wants to maximize those random moments when you have to kill time. Like when you want to kill time before an appointment or you’re standing on a long line at Starbucks.
You can use Blinkist to complete a book daily, learn the valuable lessons, and avoid the fluff that often pads longer books.
“Must Read” books for entrepreneurs?
What are your thoughts on these entrepreneur books? Does this list have the best entrepreneur books? Or are there some important gaps in the entrepreneur books chosen.
Please share your own thoughts on these books and any entrepreneur books you feel should be on the list but were overlooked for one reason or another.
I will be updating this list every year, with new entrepreneur books and many of the future choices might come from what YOU THE READER add in the comments section below. So please share your thoughts about any entrepreneurial books you love.
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