13 Must-Read Business and Leadership Books for Entrepreneurs

We asked entrepreneurs to divulge where they find their startup wisdom, leadership tips, business advice and much more. Here's a look at 13 must-read books they said we...

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8. The 80/20 Principle by Richard Koch

“The book is based off the findings of famed Italian economist Vilfredo Pareto, which states that 80 percent of effects can be traced back to just 20 percent of causes. When translated to a business model, this [is] commonly applied as: 80 percent of your profits or sales should come from 20 percent of your customers. This is an invaluable mechanism that can be applied to almost any industry and is one that has proven to be pivotal for my law firm.”

– Richard P. Console, Jr., Managing Partner of Console & Hollawell, P.C.: @ConsoleAtLaw


9. I Was Blind but Now I See by James Althucher

” ‘Avoid crappy people.’ I’ve internalized this [in] two ways: [by] ruthlessly minimizing exposure to negative people in real life [and] doing the same with social media friends/followers too. I don’t want negative people bringing me down or inviting me to their drama. I’m becoming quicker to distance myself from these people and it [has] greatly enhanced my happiness.”

– Katie McCaskey, President of George Bowers Grocery: @GeorgeBowers


10. All Marketers are Liars by Seth Godin

“I have read 90% of Seth’s books and all are outstanding.  This one is extremely important as it really forces the entrepreneur to focus on their customer, their product, and [whether] it is a reasonable story.  When you start up a business you really want to know who exactly your clients are and how to market to them.  This book really helps with that cause.”

– Tom Blue, Founder and CEO of Lead411: @tomblue


11. The Art of the Start by Guy Kawasaki

” [I read this book before starting Pennyful.] This book gave me invaluable insights into what it takes to create a successful company and the kind of questions one should ask while doing so.”

– Ravitej Yadalam, Founder and CEO of Pennyful.com: @pennyfulonline


12. Founders at Work by Jessica Livingston

“There is no substitute for getting inside the mind of other entrepreneurs, and Founders at Work provides startup stories in spades, from icons like Steve Wozniak to lesser-known entrepreneurs like Caterina Fake of Flickr. As you read the 20+ interviews of these founders, patterns start to emerge, and you find a template forming in your mind of what works and what doesn’t.”

– Joshua Steimle, Founder and CEO of MWI: @donloper


13. Delivering Happiness by Tony Hsieh

“It’s not exactly a hidden gem, but I thought it was the perfect blend of anecdotes [and] real life decisions/situations mixed with a quality story-telling tone ([not to mention] Tony’s self-deprecating humor). While some business books feel like you’re reading a marketing textbook in school, I found Delivering Happiness to be the most pleasurable and easy book to read while serving a real purpose to those business owners [who] read it. A copy remains on my desk in case I ever need to refer to it.”

– Alex Lieske, President of Borrow Baby Couture: @borrowbaby

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