10 Must Read Entrepreneurship Books from 2012 : Under30CEO 10 Must Read Entrepreneurship Books from 2012 : Under30CEO
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10 Must Read Entrepreneurship Books from 2012

| January 16, 2013 | 18 Comments

What did you read in 2012? The following are a group of books that were all released in 2012 so maybe you will find something new!  They are also in no particular order…We suggest you read them all!

The $100 Startup: Reinvent the Way You Make a Living, Do What You Love, and Create a New Future

the-$100-startupIn The $100 StartupChris Guillebeau shows you how to lead of life of adventure, meaning and purpose – and earn a good living.

Still in his early thirties, Chris is on the verge of completing a tour of every country on earth – he’s already visited more than 175 nations – and yet he’s never held a “real job” or earned a regular paycheck.  Rather, he has a special genius for turning ideas into income, and he uses what he earns both to support his life of adventure and to give back.

There are many others like Chris – those who’ve found ways to opt out of traditional employment and create the time and income to pursue what they find meaningful.  Sometimes, achieving that perfect blend of passion and income doesn’t depend on shelving what you currently do.  You can start small with your venture, committing little time or money, and wait to take the real plunge when you’re sure it’s successful.

In preparing to write this book, Chris identified 1,500 individuals who have built businesses earning $50,000 or more from a modest investment (in many cases, $100 or less), and from that group he’s chosen to focus on the 50 most intriguing case studies.  In nearly all cases, people with no special skills discovered aspects of their personal passions that could be monetized, and were able to restructure their lives in ways that gave them greater freedom and fulfillment.

The Startup Owner’s Manual: The Step-By-Step Guide for Building a Great Company

the-startup-owners-manual-the-step-by-step-guide-for-building-a-great-companyPower your startup to success with The Startup Owner’s Manual.

This near-encyclopedic guide unlocks the secrets to startup success – walking you, step-by-step, through the tested and proven Customer Development process created by startup expert Steve Blank.

Whether you’re launching a physical channel startup or one that will sell through web/mobile channels, on these pages, you’ll learn how to:

- Use the Customer Development method to bring your business idea to life
- Conduct your search for a scalable, profitable business model
- Incorporate the Business Model Canvas as the organizing principle for startup hypotheses
- Find Product-Market fit
- Get, Keep and Grow customers
- Fuel growth with metrics that matter
- Avoid the 9 deadly sins startups commit most often

The Fire Starter Sessions: A Soulful + Practical Guide to Creating Success on Your Own Terms

fire-starter-sessionsThe Fire Starter Sessions is an apathy-kicking, integrity-infusing guide to defining success on your own terms.

As the creator of DanielleLaPorte.com–deemed “the best place online for kick-ass spirituality,” Danielle LaPorte’s straight-talk life-and-livelihood sermons have been read by over one million people. Bold but empathetic, she reframes popular self-help and success concepts:

- Life balance is a myth, and the pursuit of it is causing us more stress then the craving for balance itself.
- Being well-rounded is over-rated. When you focus on developing your true strengths, you enter your mastery zone.
- Screw your principles (they might be holding you back).
- We have ambition backwards. Getting clear on how you want to feel in your life + work is more important than setting goals. It’s the most potent form of clarity that you can have, and it’s what leads to true fulfillment.

Practice Perfect: 42 Rules for Getting Better at Getting Better

practice-perfectRules for developing talent with disciplined, deliberate, intelligent practice

We live in a competition loving culture. We love the performance, the big win, the ticking seconds of the clock as the game comes down to the wire. We watch games and cheer, sometimes to the point of obsession, but if we really wanted to see greatness—wanted to cheer for it, see it happen, understand what made it happen—we’d spend our time watching, obsessing on, and maybe even cheering the practices instead. This book puts practice on the front burner of all who seek to instill talent and achievement in others as well as in themselves. This is a journey to understand that practice, not games, makes champions.

In this book, the authors engage the dream of better, both in fields and endeavors where participants know they should practice and also in those where many do not yet recognize the transformative power of practice. And it’s not just whether you practice. How you practice may be a true competitive advantage. Deliberately engineered and designed practice can revolutionize our most important endeavors. The clear set of rules presented in Practice Perfect will make us better in virtually every performance of life. The “how-to” rules of practice cover such topics as rethinking practice, modeling excellent practice, using feedback, creating a culture of practice, making new skills stick, and hiring for practice.

The Start-up of You: Adapt to the Future, Invest in Yourself, and Transform Your Career

the-startup-of-youA blueprint for thriving in your job and building a career by applying the lessons of Silicon Valley’s most innovative entrepreneurs.

The career escalator is jammed at every level. Unemployment rates are sky-high. Creative disruption is shaking every industry. Global competition for jobs is fierce. The employer-employee pact is over and traditional job security is a thing of the past.

Here, LinkedIn cofounder and chairman Reid Hoffman and author Ben Casnocha show how to accelerate your career in today’s competitive world. The key is to manage your career as if it were a start-up business: a living, breathing, growing start-up of you.

Why? Start-ups – and the entrepreneurs who run them – are nimble. They invest in themselves. They build their professional networks. They take intelligent risks. They make uncertainty and volatility work to their advantage.

These are the very same skills professionals need to get ahead today. 

This book isn’t about cover letters or resumes. Instead, you will learn the best practices of Silicon Valley start-ups, and how to apply these entrepreneurial strategies to your career.

The Founder’s Dilemmas: Anticipating and Avoiding the Pitfalls That Can Sink a Startup

the-founders's-dilemmasOften downplayed in the excitement of starting up a new business venture is one of the most important decisions entrepreneurs will face: should they go it alone, or bring in cofounders, hires, and investors to help build the business? More than just financial rewards are at stake. Friendships and relationships can suffer. Bad decisions at the inception of a promising venture lay the foundations for its eventual ruin. The Founder’s Dilemmas is the first book to examine the early decisions by entrepreneurs that can make or break a startup and its team.

Drawing on a decade of research, Noam Wasserman reveals the common pitfalls founders face and how to avoid them. He looks at whether it is a good idea to cofound with friends or relatives, how and when to split the equity within the founding team, and how to recognize when a successful founder-CEO should exit or be fired. Wasserman explains how to anticipate, avoid, or recover from disastrous mistakes that can splinter a founding team, strip founders of control, and leave founders without a financial payoff for their hard work and innovative ideas. He highlights the need at each step to strike a careful balance between controlling the startup and attracting the best resources to grow it, and demonstrates why the easy short-term choice is often the most perilous in the long term.

The Heart of Change: Real-Life Stories of How People Change Their Organizations

the-heart-of-changeWhy is organizational change so hard? Because in order to make any transformation successful, you must change more than just the structure and operations of an organization—you need to change people’s behavior. And that is never easy.

The Heart of Change is your guide to helping people think and feel differently in order to meet your shared goals. According to bestselling author and renowned leadership expert John Kotter and coauthor Dan Cohen, this focus on connecting with people’s emotions is what will spark the behavior change and actions that lead to success. Now freshly designed, The Heart of Change is the engaging and essential complement to John Kotter’s international bestseller Leading Change.

Building off of Kotter’s revolutionary eight-step process, this book vividly illustrates how large-scale business change can work. With real-life stories of people in organizations, the authors show how teams and individuals get motivated and activated to overcome obstacles to change—and produce spectacular results. Kotter and Cohen argue that change initiatives often fail because leaders rely too exclusively on data and analysis to get buy-in from their teams, instead of creatively showing or doing something that appeals to their emotions and inspires them to spring into action. They call this the see-feel-change dynamic; and it is crucial for the success of any true organizational transformation.


The Startup Game: Inside the Partnership between Venture Capitalists and Entrepreneurs

the-startup-gameFor more than 40 years, venture capitalist Bill Draper has worked with top entrepreneurs in fabled Silicon Valley, where today’s vision is made into tomorrow’s reality. From the VC who saw the value in Skype, Zappos, and many other companies, comes firsthand stories of success. In these pages Draper explores: how to evaluate innovative ideas and the entrepreneurs behind those ideas (lessons from Yahoo, Baidu, Tesla Motors, Activision, Measurex, and more); and the value of political leadership in creating opportunity, including on-the-ground accounts of how Deng Xiaoping brought China roaring into the modern world.

William H. Draper III is one of the West Coast’s first venture capitalists and the founder of Sutter Hill Ventures in Palo Alto, California. Former Chairman of the Export-Import Bank of the United States and Undersecretary General of the United Nations, he is currently the General Partner of the venture capital companies Draper Richards L.P., Draper Investment Company, and Draper International.


Startup Communities: Building an Entrepreneurial Ecosystem in Your City

startup-communities-building-entrepreneurial-ecosystem-in-your-city-brad-feld-hardcover-cover-art“Startup communities” are popping up everywhere, from cities like Boulder to Boston and even in countries such as Iceland. These types of entrepreneurial ecosystems are driving innovation and small business energy. Startup Communities documents the buzz, strategy, long-term perspective, and dynamics of building communities of entrepreneurs who can feed off of each other’s talent, creativity, and support.

Based on more than twenty years of Boulder-based entrepreneur turned-venture capitalist Brad Feld’s experience in the field?as well as contributions from other innovative startup communities?this reliable resource skillfully explores what it takes to create an entrepreneurial community in any city, at any time. Along the way, it offers valuable insights into increasing the breadth and depth of the entrepreneurial ecosystem by multiplying connections among entrepreneurs and mentors, improving access to entrepreneurial education, and much more.

  • Details the four critical principles needed to form a sustainable startup community
  • Perfect for entrepreneurs and venture capitalists seeking fresh ideas and new opportunities
  • Written by Brad Feld, a thought-leader in this field who has been an early-stage investor and successful entrepreneur for more than twenty years

The Kickstarter Handbook: Real-Life Success Stories of Artists, Inventors, and Entrepreneurs

kickstarter-handbookSo you want to produce a short film. Or design a new line of jewelry. Or manufacture a revolutionary solar-powered garden sprinkler. There’s just one catch: You need $100,000 to bankroll your dream, and your checking account has barely enough to cover the rent.

Enter Kickstarter.com—the phenomenal “crowdfunding” website launched in 2009 that brings venture capital to the masses. At Kickstarter, it’s not uncommon for entrepreneurs to raise $50,000, $100,000, $250,000, or more. All you need is a great idea—and The Kickstarter Handbook.
 
Business journliast Don Steinberg has interviewed dozens of artists and inventors who launched their passion projects online. Through their voices, you’ll explore all the strategies of a successful Kickstarter campaign. You’ll learn the elements of a compelling Kickstarter video, innovative ways to market your projects, tips for getting donors onboard, and the secrets of irresistible Kickstarter “rewards.” You’ll also discover what to do in a best-case scenario—when your project goes viral and the cash starts flowing in. On Kickstarter, it happens to a few lucky visionaries every week. Here’s how to be one of them.

What books were your favorites from 2012?

For more check out Under30CEO’s 17 Lessons from 17 Books to Learn from in 2013.
Book reviews and descriptions via Amazon.com

About the Author: Jared O'Toole

Co-founder and editor of Under30Media. You can send an email to Jared(at)Under30CEO.com. Follow him on Google+ or @JaredOToole

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Category: Startup Advice