If you thought that you were done with reading books when you finished your education, then you were wrong. While a lot of the information we need is now available online, there are some things that can only be learned from books. Even entrepreneurship. Just like you have a reading list in school, you've got a reading list for going into business, as well.
The market is saturated, of course, and there are thousands of titles to choose from, but this is a narrowed down, creme de la creme list of the best books in the business. There is a lot of valuable information hiding between these pages, and a lot to learn for a young entrepreneur in search of success. Whether you're just starting your first business or you've already been in the game for a while - with successes and failures alike - you are guaranteed to learn something new and useful from each and every one of these titles.
Why You Need These Books
You might be looking at this list and thinking "Nah, I'm good". After all, you've made it so far without needing to read about this, so why start now? Well, they say that education and learning never really stops, even after leaving school. Your entire life is an opportunity for discovery and knowledge acquisition.
If you're motivated and driven, you can achieve a goal few are able to: self-improvement. This ties closely into your career goals and desire for business success, and that is exactly what these books will help you with. Reading what these people have to say can be invaluable, because it gives you insight into 30 different, unique experiences that other entrepreneurs have had before you. Learning from your mistakes is smart, but learning from others' mistakes is even smarter. And cheaper.
That is why educating yourself about others' experiences is an essential step in your journey to becoming a successful entrepreneur. You get to see what they did right, what they did wrong, and skip ahead a few years in building your success.
How To Read Entrepreneurship Books
You probably think you know how to read a book. As long as you're literate, you have it down, right? Well, yes and no. There is an art to reading, and reading different genres, and entrepreneurship books are no different. Here are some tips on how to go about reading entrepreneurship books:
- Keep an open mind
Some of the tips you will encounter may seem a bit far-fetched, or the authors may sound eccentric, but you've got to keep in mind the fact that these people made it. They were successful. So even when their mottos may seem strange to you, keep an open mind and try to make their ideas work for your vision.
- Take it seriously
Don't start reading if you're not going to take this process seriously. Before you even start, you need to be steadfast in your conviction about starting a business and learning how to set it up and help it grow. So, everything you read, and all the tips you learn - take all of it seriously, and take reading and learning from these people seriously. This is your life and your business, and you are building your foundation right now.
- Take it one chapter at a time
Remember that most of these books are to be read and put into practice, step by step. So, after every chapter, stop and think about what you've learned and how you can apply that in your real life situation. Make it a habit to take some time to process and filter all the information.
- Don't waste opportunities
Listen - don't waste valuable opportunities, just because you haven't gotten through the whole reading list! Part of becoming a smart and successful entrepreneur is knowing when to seize opportunity, so if it arises, don't put it off! You can always continue studying, even while applying what you've already learned.
Prepare Yourself And Grow
There are 30 different books on this list, and they will be divided into two broad categories: books that you read in preparation of being an entrepreneur, and the books you read in order to learn how to grow your business, once you've set it up. Each of these categories is essential to the process, but since most businesses die out within the first two years, preparation is key, especially if you've never tried your hand at entrepreneurship before.
Take some time to read several titles from this list in preparation, remember the lessons they've taught you, and apply the advice you've learned in your journey.
Before You Become An Entrepreneur
- The Power of Positive Thinking by Norman Vincent Peale
- The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People: Powerful Lessons in Personal Change by Stephen R. Covey @StephenRCovey
- Click Millionaires: Work Less, Live More with an Internet Business You Love by Scott Fox @Scott_Fox
- The Seasons of Life by Jim Rohn @OfficialJimRohn
- Developing the Leader Within You by John Maxwell @JohnCMaxwell
- The E-Myth Revisited: Why Most Small Businesses Don’t Work and What to Do About It by Michael E. Gerber @MichaelEGerber
- The Entrepreneur Mind: 100 Essential Beliefs, Characteristics, and Habits of Elite Entrepreneurs by Kevin Johnson @TheEntrprnrMind
- Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway: Dynamic Techniques for Turning Fear, Indecision, and Anger into Power, Action and Love by Susan Jeffers @SusanJeffers
- The $100 Startup: Reinvent the Way You Make a Living, Do What You Love, and Create a New Future by Chris Guillebeau @chrisguillebeau
- Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap … And Others Don’t by Jim Collins @level5leaders
- The Greatest Salesman in the World by Og Mandino @TheOgGroup
- The Hard Thing About Hard Things: Building a Business When There Are No Easy Answers by Ben Horowitz @bhorowitz
- The Law of Success: In Sixteen Lessons by Napoleon Hill
- The Art of Non-Conformity: Set Your Own Rules, Live the Life You Want, and Change the World by Chris Gillebeau chrisguillebeau
- Who Moved My Cheese? An Amazing Way to Deal with Change in Your Work and in Your Life by Spencer Johnson
- The New One Minute Manager by Kenneth Blanchard @kenblanchard and Johnson Spencer
- The Lean Startup: How Today’s Entrepreneurs Use Continuous Innovation to Create Radically Successful Businessesby Eric Ries @ericries
- Rich Dad Poor Dad: What the Rich Teach their Kids About Money that the Poor and Middle Class Do Not! by Robert Kiyosaki @theRealKiyosaki
- The Richest Man in Babylon by George S. Clason
- Awaken the Giant Within: How to Take Immediate Control of Your Mental, Emotional, Physical and Financial Destiny! by Anthony Robbins @TonyRobbins
- See You at the Top by Zig Ziglar @TheZigZiglar
- The Compound Effect by Darren Hardy @DARRENHARDY
- The Startup of You: Adapt to the Future, Invest in Yourself, and Transform Your Career by Reid Hoffman @reidhoffman and Ben Casnocha @bencasnocha
- Success Through a Positive Mental Attitude by Napoleon Hill and W. Stone
- Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill
Learn How To Grow Your Business
- How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie @DaleCarnegie
- The Psychology of Selling: Increase Your Sales Faster and Easier than You Ever Thought Possible by Brian Tracy @BrianTracy
- Getting to Yes: Negotiating Agreement Without Giving In by Roger Fisher
- Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion by Robert B. Cialdini @RobertCialdini
- To Sell Is Human: The Surprising Truth About Moving Others by Daniel Pink @DanielPink
As you can see, knowledge is power, and these 30 books will give you the knowledge you need, so take advantage of it!