The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People – Stephen R. Covey
In The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, author Stephen R. Covey presents a holistic, integrated, and principle-centered approach for solving personal and professional problems. With penetrating insights and pointed anecdotes, Covey reveals a step-by-step pathway for living with fairness, integrity, service, and human dignity–principles that give us the security to adapt to change and the wisdom and power to take advantage of the opportunities that change creates.
Think and Grow Rich – Napoleon Hill
Think and Grow Rich has been called the “Granddaddy of All Motivational Literature” and was the first book to address what makes a winner.
In Think and Grow Rich, Napoleon Hill draws on stories of Andrew Carnegie, Thomas Edison, Henry Ford, and other millionaires of his generation to illustrate his principles.
Napoleon Hill (1883-1970) enjoyed a long and successful career as a lecturer, an author, and a consultant to business leaders. Think and Grow Rich is the all-time bestseller, having sold 15 million copies worldwide, that sets the standard for motivational thinking.
The Lean Startup – Eric Reis
Most startups fail. But many of those failures are preventable. The Lean Startup is a new approach being adopted across the globe, changing the way that companies are built and new products are launched.
Eric Ries defines a startup as an organization dedicated to creating something new under conditions of extreme uncertainty. This is just as true for one person in a garage or a group of seasoned professionals in a Fortune 500 boardroom. What they have in common is a mission to penetrate that fog of uncertainty to discover a successful path to a sustainable business.
The Lean Startup approach fosters companies that are more capital efficient and that leverage human creativity more effectively. Inspired by lessons from lean manufacturing, it relies on “validated learning,” rapid scientific experimentation, as well as a number of counter-intuitive practices that shorten product development cycles, measure actual progress without resorting to vanity metrics, and learn what customers really want. It enables a company to shift directions with agility, altering plans inch by inch, minute by minute.
The E-Myth Revisited – Michael E. Gerber
In this first new and totally revised edition of the 150,000-copy underground bestseller, The E-Myth, Michael Gerber dispels the myths surrounding starting your own business and shows how commonplace assumptions can get in the way of running a business. He walks you through the steps in the life of a business from entrepreneurial infancy, through adolescent growing pains, to the mature entrepreneurial perspective, the guiding light of all businesses that succeed. He then shows how to apply the lessons of franchising to any business whether or not it is a franchise. Finally, Gerber draws the vital, often overlooked distinction between working on your business and working in your business. After you have read The E-Myth Revisited, you will truly be able to grow your business in a predictable and productive way.
What do you do? Tim Ferriss has trouble answering the question. Depending on when you ask this controversial Princeton University guest lecturer, he might answer:
“I race motorcycles in Europe.”
“I ski in the Andes.”
“I scuba dive in Panama.”
“I dance tango in Buenos Aires.”
He has spent more than five years learning the secrets of the New Rich, a fast-growing subculture who has abandoned the “deferred-life plan” and instead mastered the new currencies—time and mobility—to create luxury lifestyles in the here and now.
Whether you are an overworked employee or an entrepreneur trapped in your own business, this book is the compass for a new and revolutionary world.
Rework – Jason Fried
Most business books give you the same old advice: Write a business plan, study the competition, seek investors, yadda yadda. If you’re looking for a book like that, put this one back on the shelf.
Rework shows you a better, faster, easier way to succeed in business. Read it and you’ll know why plans are actually harmful, why you don’t need outside investors, and why you’re better off ignoring the competition. The truth is, you need less than you think. You don’t need to be a workaholic. You don’t need to staff up. You don’t need to waste time on paperwork or meetings. You don’t even need an office. Those are all just excuses.
What you really need to do is stop talking and start working. This book shows you the way. You’ll learn how to be more productive, how to get exposure without breaking the bank, and many more counterintuitive ideas that will inspire and provoke you.
The hip, iconoclastic CEO of Zappos shows how a different kind of corporate culture can make a huge difference in achieving remarkable results — by actually creating a company culture that values happiness –and then delivers on it.
- Pay brand-new employees $2,000 to quit
- Make customer service the responsibility of the entire company-not just a department
- Focus on company culture as the #1 priority
- Apply research from the science of happiness to running a business
- Help employees grow-both personally and professionally
- Seek to change the world
- Oh, and make money too . . .
Losing My Virginity: How I Survived, Had Fun, and Made a Fortune Doing Business My Way – Richard Branson
“Oh, screw it, let’s do it.”
That’s the philosophy that has allowed Richard Branson, in slightly more than twenty-five years, to spawn so many successful ventures. From the airline business (Virgin Atlantic Airways), to music (Virgin Records and V2), to cola (Virgin Cola), to retail (Virgin Megastores), and nearly a hundred others, ranging from financial services to bridal wear, Branson has a track record second to none.
Losing My Virginity is the unusual, frequently outrageous autobiography of one of the great business geniuses of our time. When Richard Branson started his first business, he and his friends decided that “since we’re complete virgins at business, let’s call it just that: Virgin.” Since then, Branson has written his own “rules” for success, creating a group of companies with a global presence, but no central headquarters, no management hierarchy, and minimal bureaucracy.
The Art of the Start: The Time-Tested, Battle-Hardened Guide for Anyone Starting Anything – Guy Kawasaki
A new product, a new service, a new company, a new division, a new organization, a new anything—where there’s a will, here’s the way.
It begins with a dream that just won’t quit, the once-in-a-lifetime thunderbolt of pure inspiration, the obsession, the world-beater, the killer app, the next big thing. Everyone who wants to make the world a better place becomes possessed by a grand idea.
But what does it take to turn your idea into action?
In The Art of the Start, Guy Kawasaki brings two decades of experience as one of business’s most original and irreverent strategists to offer the essential guide for anyone starting anything, from a multinational corporation to a church group. At Apple in the 1980s, he helped lead one of the great companies of the century, turning ordinary consumers into evangelists. As founder and CEO of Garage Technology Ventures, a venture capital firm, he has field-tested his ideas with dozens of newly hatched companies. And as the author of bestselling business books and articles, he has advised thousands of people who are making their startup dreams real.
Built to Last, the defining management study of the nineties, showed how great companies triumph over time and how long-term sustained performance can be engineered into the DNA of an enterprise from the verybeginning.
But what about the company that is not born with great DNA? How can good companies, mediocre companies, even bad companies achieve enduring greatness?
How To Win Friends and Influence People – Dale Carnegie
One of the best known motivational books in history: Since it was released in 1936, How to Win Friends and Influence People has sold more than 15 million copies. Carnegie’s first book is timeless and appeals equally to business audiences, self-help audiences, and general readers alike.
Proven advice for success in life: Carnegie believed that most successes come from an ability to communicate effectively rather than from brilliant insights. His book teaches these skills by showing readers how to value others and make them feel appreciated rather than manipulated.
As relevant as ever before: In the age of Steven Covey and Tony Robbins, Dale Carnegie’s principles endure. The original edition was published in response to the Great Depression, and this fresh hardcover edition will appeal now more than ever to readers wanting tried and true advice on how to deal with a depressed economy. Readers can learn how to get the job they want, improve the job they have, and make the best of any situation.
The $100 Startup: Reinvent the Way You Make a Living, Do What You Love, and Create a New Future – Chris Guillebeau
In The $100 Startup, Chris 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.
Outliers: The Story of Success – Malcolm Gladwell
In this stunning book, Malcolm Gladwell takes us on an intellectual journey through the world of “outliers”–the best and the brightest, the most famous and the most successful. He asks the question: what makes high-achievers different?
His answer is that we pay too much attention to what successful people are like, and too little attention to where they are from: that is, their culture, their family, their generation, and the idiosyncratic experiences of their upbringing. Along the way he explains the secrets of software billionaires, what it takes to be a great soccer player, why Asians are good at math, and what made the Beatles the greatest rock band.
Brilliant and entertaining, Outliers is a landmark work that will simultaneously delight and illuminate.
Rich Dad Poor Dad – Robert T. Kiyosaki
Rich Dad Poor Dad, the #1 Personal Finance book of all time, tells the story of Robert Kiyosaki and his two dads—his real father and the father of his best friend, his rich dad—and the ways in which both men shaped his thoughts about money and investing. The book explodes the myth that you need to earn a high income to be rich and explains the difference between working for money and having your money work for you.
The old saying is wrong—winners do quit, and quitters do win.
Every new project (or job, or hobby, or company) starts out exciting and fun. Then it gets harder and less fun, until it hits a low point—really hard, and not much fun at all.
And then you find yourself asking if the goal is even worth the hassle. Maybe you’re in a Dip—a temporary setback that will get better if you keep pushing. But maybe it’s really a Cul-de-Sac, which will never get better, no matter how hard you try.
According to bestselling author Seth Godin, what really sets superstars apart from everyone else is the ability to escape dead ends quickly, while staying focused and motivated when it really counts.
Crush It!: Why NOW Is the Time to Cash In on Your Passion – Gary Vaynerchuk
Do you have a hobby you wish you could do all day? An obsession that keeps you up at night? Now is the perfect time to take those passions and make a living doing what you love. In CRUSH IT! Why NOW Is The Time To Cash In On Your Passion, Gary Vaynerchuk shows you how to use the power of the Internet to turn your real interests into real businesses. Gary spent years building his family business from a local wine shop into a national industry leader. Then one day he turned on a video camera, and by using the secrets revealed in this book, transformed his entire life and earning potential by building his personal brand. By the end of this book, any reader will have learned how to harness the power of the Internet to make their entrepreneurial dreams come true. Step by step, CRUSH IT! is the ultimate driver’s manual for modern business.
The Ascent of Money: A Financial History of the World – Niall Ferguson
Niall Ferguson follows the money to tell the human story behind the evolution of our financial system, from its genesis in ancient Mesopotamia to the latest upheavals on what he calls Planet Finance. What’s more, Ferguson reveals financial history as the essential backstory behind all history, arguing that the evolution of credit and debt was as important as any technological innovation in the rise of civilization. As Ferguson traces the crisis from ancient Egypt’s Memphis to today’s Chongqing, he offers bold and compelling new insights into the rise, and fall, of not just money but Western power as well.
Giants of Enterprise: Seven Business Innovators and the Empires They Built – Richard S. Tedlow
Seven business innovators and the empires they built.
The pre-eminent business historian of our time, Richard S. Tedlow, examines seven great CEOs who successfully managed cutting-edge technology and formed enduring corporate empires.
With the depth and clarity of a master, Tedlow illuminates the minds, lives, and strategies behind the legendary successes of our times:
– George Eastman and his invention of the Kodak camera;
– Thomas Watson of IBM;
– Henry Ford and his automobile;
– Charles Revson and his use of television advertising to drive massive sales for Revlon;
– Robert N. Noyce, co-inventor of the integrated circuit and founder of Intel;
– Andrew Carnegie and his steel empire;
– Sam Walton and his unprecedented retail machine, Wal-Mart.
The Innovator’s Dilemma: When New Technologies Cause Great Firms to Fail – Clayton M. Christensen
His work is cited by the world’s best-known thought leaders, from Steve Jobs to Malcolm Gladwell. In this classic bestseller, innovation expert Clayton Christensen shows how even the most outstanding companies can do everything right—yet still lose market leadership. Read this international bestseller to avoid a similar fate.
Clay Christensen—who authored the award-winning Harvard Business Review article “How Will You Measure Your Life?”—explains why most companies miss out on new waves of innovation. No matter the industry, he says a successful company with established products WILL get pushed aside unless managers know how and when to abandon traditional business practices. Offering both successes and failures from leading companies as a guide, The Innovator’s Dilemma gives you a set of rules for capitalizing on the phenomenon of disruptive innovation.
Sharp, cogent, provocative, and one of the most influential business books of all time—The Innovator’s Dilemma is the book no manager or entrepreneur should be without.
Liar’s Poker – Michael Lewis
The time was the 1980s. The place was Wall Street. The game was called Liar’s Poker.
Michael Lewis was fresh out of Princeton and the London School of Economics when he landed a job at Salomon Brothers, one of Wall Street’s premier investment firms. During the next three years, Lewis rose from callow trainee to bond salesman, raking in millions for the firm and cashing in on a modern-day gold rush.
Liar’s Poker is the culmination of those heady, frenzied years—a behind-the-scenes look at a unique and turbulent time in American business. From the frat-boy camaraderie of the forty-first-floor trading room to the killer instinct that made ambitious young men gamble everything on a high-stakes game of bluffing and deception, here is Michael Lewis’s knowing and hilarious insider’s account of an unprecedented era of greed, gluttony, and outrageous fortune.
The Personal MBA: Master the Art of Business – Josh Kaufman
Getting an MBA is an expensive choice-one almost impossible to justify regardless of the state of the economy. Even the elite schools like Harvard and Wharton offer outdated, assembly-line programs that teach you more about PowerPoint presentations and unnecessary financial models than what it takes to run a real business. You can get better results (and save hundreds of thousands of dollars) by skipping B-school altogether.
Josh Kaufman founded PersonalMBA.com as an alternative to the business school boondoggle. His blog has introduced hundreds of thousands of readers to the best business books and most powerful business concepts of all time. Now, he shares the essentials of entrepreneurship, marketing, sales, negotiation, operations, productivity, systems design, and much more, in one comprehensive volume. The Personal MBA distills the most valuable business lessons into simple, memorable mental models that can be applied to real-world challenges.
The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference – Malcolm Gladwell
The tipping point is that magic moment when an idea, trend, or social behavior crosses a threshold, tips, and spreads like wildfire. Just as a single sick person can start an epidemic of the flu, so too can a small but precisely targeted push cause a fashion trend, the popularity of a new product, or a drop in the crime rate. This widely acclaimed bestseller, in which Malcolm Gladwell explores and brilliantly illuminates the tipping point phenomenon, is already changing the way people throughout the world think about selling products and disseminating ideas.
Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us – Daniel H. Pink
Most people believe that the best way to motivate is with rewards like money—the carrot-and-stick approach. That’s a mistake, says Daniel H. Pink (author of To Sell Is Human: The Surprising Truth About Motivating Others). In this provocative and persuasive new book, he asserts that the secret to high performance and satisfaction-at work, at school, and at home—is the deeply human need to direct our own lives, to learn and create new things, and to do better by ourselves and our world.
Drawing on four decades of scientific research on human motivation, Pink exposes the mismatch between what science knows and what business does—and how that affects every aspect of life. He examines the three elements of true motivation—autonomy, mastery, and purpose-and offers smart and surprising techniques for putting these into action in a unique book that will change how we think and transform how we live.
Getting Things Done: The Art of Stress-Free Productivity – David Allen
In today’s world, yesterday’s methods just don’t work. In Getting Things Done, veteran coach and management consultant David Allen shares the breakthrough methods for stress-free performance that he has introduced to tens of thousands of people across the country. Allen’s premise is simple: our productivity is directly proportional to our ability to relax. Only when our minds are clear and our thoughts are organized can we achieve effective productivity and unleash our creative potential. In Getting Things Done Allen shows how to:
* Apply the “do it, delegate it, defer it, drop it” rule to get your in-box to empty
* Reassess goals and stay focused in changing situations
* Plan projects as well as get them unstuck
* Overcome feelings of confusion, anxiety, and being overwhelmed
* Feel fine about what you’re not doing
Made to Stick: Why Some Ideas Survive and Others Die – Chip and Dan Heath
Mark Twain once observed, “A lie can get halfway around the world before the truth can even get its boots on.” His observation rings true: Urban legends, conspiracy theories, and bogus public-health scares circulate effortlessly. Meanwhile, people with important ideas–business people, teachers, politicians, journalists, and others–struggle to make their ideas “stick.”
Why do some ideas thrive while others die? And how do we improve the chances of worthy ideas? In Made to Stick, accomplished educators and idea collectors Chip and Dan Heath tackle head-on these vexing questions. Inside, the brothers Heath reveal the anatomy of ideas that stick and explain ways to make ideas stickier, such as applying the “human scale principle,” using the “Velcro Theory of Memory,” and creating “curiosity gaps.”
In this indispensable guide, we discover that sticky messages of all kinds–from the infamous “kidney theft ring” hoax to a coach’s lessons on sportsmanship to a vision for a new product at Sony–draw their power from the same six traits.
Let My People Go Surfing: The Education of a Reluctant Businessman – Yvon Chouinard
In his long-awaited memoir, Yvon Chouinard-legendary climber, businessman, environmentalist, and founder of Patagonia, Inc., shares the persistence and courage that have gone into being head of one of the most respected and environmentally responsible companies on earth. From his youth as the son of a French Canadian blacksmith to the thrilling, ambitious climbing expeditions that inspired his innovative designs for the sport’s equipment, Let My People Go Surfing is the story of a man who brought doing good and having grand adventures into the heart of his business life-a book that will deeply affect entrepreneurs and outdoor enthusiasts alike.
Let us know your all time favorite business books in the comments.
Book descriptions via Amazon.com