There are heaps of books that have been written by experienced business leaders and subject matter experts and they all offer key takeaways that can move your business forward. If you’re looking for fresh new business insight or simply get inspired from books, this curated list is worth your time.
Here’s a look at 7 must-read books for first-time entrepreneurs.
1. The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People: Powerful Lessons in Personal Change
The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey offers up a set of powerful habits aimed at motivating you to realize your personal and professional goals. The habits are summarized in simple lines, which makes them simple to understand. This book has sold more than 25 million copies worldwide since its first publication and its audio version broke records; making it the first ever non-fiction audiobook in the USA to sell more than a million copies. All the more reason to read it, eh?
2. Ogilvy On Advertising
Ogilvy On Advertising by David Ogilvy is a must-read for every entrepreneur. Hailed as the “Father of Advertising”, Ogilvy has a lot to offer in the advertising and marketing world thorough his body of work and his books. In 1962, Time called him “the most sought-after wizard in today’s advertising industry” and his book remains a staple of advertising genius.
3. Blue Ocean Strategy: How to Create Uncontested Market Space and Make Competition Irrelevant
Blue Ocean Strategy, Expanded Edition: How to Create Uncontested Market Space and Make the Competition Irrelevant by Renée Mauborgne and W. Chan Kim aims to challenge everything you thought you knew about competing in today’s crowded market place. Based on a study of 150 strategic moves spanning more than a hundred years and thirty industries, the authors argue that lasting success comes from creating ‘blue oceans’: untapped new market spaces ripe from growth. The book explains how demand should be created and not fought over and gives examples of how companies succeed when they create a market space of their own and do what no one has done before.
4. Getting Things Done: The Art Of Stress-Free Productivity
Published in 2001, Getting Things Done: The Art of Stress-Free Productivity by David Allen gives entrepreneurs a smart look at time management using the GTD (Getting Things Done) system. Allen explains how to ace time management and demonstrates how to reevaluate goals, stay focused in changing situations, plan projects; and shares a unique way to empty the inbox and feel okay about what you decide not to do. If you are looking for stress-free life hacks t0 increase productivity you need this book.
5. Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap and Others Don’t
Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap and Others Don’t by Jim Collins answers the question: How can good companies, mediocre companies, even bad companies achieve enduring greatness? Good to Great is based on extensive research by Collins and his research team and identifies a set of elite companies that made the leap to great results and sustained those results for at least fifteen years. The findings shed light on virtually every area of management strategy and practice.
6. Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action
Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action by Simon Sinek answers some of the business worlds most fundamental questions: Why are some people and organizations more innovative, more influential, and more profitable than others? Why do some command greater loyalty from customers and employees alike? Start with Why reveals how influential leaders all think, act, and communicate the same way — the opposite of what everyone else does. Sinek provides a framework upon which companies can be built, movements can be led, and people can be inspired.
7. Jonathan Livingston Seagull: The Complete Edition
Jonathan Livingston Seagull by Richard Bach is a story for people who follow their hearts and make their own rules…people who get special pleasure out of doing something well, even if only for themselves…people who know there’s more to this living than meets the eye: they’ll be right there with Jonathan, flying higher and faster than they ever dreamed. This novella is a short fable that offers a deeper meaning. Highly motivating, this book will inspire you to face challenges as an entrepreneur and keep going.
These are just a few of the inspirational books every entrepreneur should be reading. Invest in them, read them one book at a time and it will surely make a difference. Take your pick and let us know how they’ve motivated or inspired you!
This article has been edited.
Millie Rainer is an editor at BookSiren that helps readers get all kinds of books from different authors and publications. Millie likes sharing her personal insights and perspectives by blogging on literature, business, self motivation and improvement. Connect with @MillieRainer on Twitter.