Top 10 Best Books for Entrepreneurs

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1. How to Win Friends & Influence People by Dale Carnegie

If you haven’t already got your hands on it, How to win friends & Influence people is a fabulous way to start your year. The book strips back our relationships with people and how we can get more from them in a non-greedy way. Our favourite line from the book?

“You can’t win an argument. You can’t because if you lose it, you lose it; and if you win it, you lose it.”

— Dale Carnegie

This book is less about influencing people to their detriment and your gain, but rather a reminder of how we should treat people around us – regardless of power plays. It is a strong reminder for team leaders and bosses that winning an argument in the short term doesn’t always mean winning in the long run.

2. Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell

This was one of our first ever Book Club suggestions and a must read for any entrepreneur in the making. Have you ever wondered what makes some people more successful than others? Question no more. Outliers is a book that dives deep into the circumstances that surround a successful person and how this aids them to become a success in their field. Gladwell uses notable examples like Bill Gates to give readers a real visual of how this looks.

3. The 5am Club by Robin Sharma

When I first started reading this book, I struggled to push through the storyline. The 5am Club is told in a long-winded narrative, however the golden nuggets of advice are increasingly apparent as you progress through the first few chapters. The premise of the book is that successful entrepreneurs rise early and achieve more by working in the early hours of the day. There is also a lot to say about physical exercise and its benefits to entrepreneurs, as well as structuring your day for optimum flow.

4. Shoe Dog by Phil Knight

Shoe Dog is one of my favourite business books of all time. It is a light hearted read that explores the impressive rise and creation of Nike. Phil Knight tells the story from his own point of view and told with complete honesty and transparency, it uncovers how one of the most successful retail brand of our time, came to be.

5. The Personal MBA by Josh Kaufman

For a really long time I considered returning to post-graduate studies and attaining an Masters of Business Administration. That is, until I got my hands on a copy of The Personal MBA. This book is an in-depth look at all the principles you will discover over the course of a two year degree, simplified and structured into one easy to digest read.

6. The Four-Hour Work Week by Tim Ferris

I’ll never forget when this book first came out. The Four Hour Work Week promises more life in the work-life balance we all struggle and better yet, it delivers. The book reveals simple truths about how we tend to overcomplicate matters and spend too much time solving problems instead of eliminating them.

7. Thinking, Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman

With more than 2 million copies sold, it is little wonder to see Daniel Kahneman’s Thinking, Fast and Slow on this list of must read books for entrepreneurs. The book promises to allow the reader to make better decisions and even more than that, how to shape thoughts of those around us. As consumers we have two natural responses: fast, intuitive thinking, and slow, rational thinking. By eliminating our prejudice, we can strip back our thought process.

8. The Lean Startup by Eric Ries

I picked up The Lean Startup in an airport before I boarded my flight back to South Africa. The book promised to explain why some businesses fail and, more importantly, how those failures can be avoided. My favourite take away from the book speaks on when to pivot and when to persevere. The books is aimed more toward high value companies and large scale ideas, though is really essential reading for understanding a business in the start up phase.

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