Have you ever considered starting your own business? Or maybe you already have, but need a little guidance and inspiration?
Being an entrepreneur means forging your own path and trying new ideas. But you don’t have to do it alone. These are 10 of my favorite books for entrepreneurs to help you become a successful business owner.
Purpose, Vision & Mindset
Start With Why by Simon Sinek
Before you start your business, it’s important to understand why you’re going into business and what your ultimate goals are. If you go into business simply because you want to sell x product or y service, you won’t get very far.
Simon Sinek’s book Start With Why delves into the idea that the most successful businesses are so successful because they have a clear vision of why they are in business. It’s not about what they do, or how they do it - it’s about why they do it.
Without a clear vision of why you are in business, others won’t be willing or interested in following you.
The Success Principles by Jack Canfield
Becoming an entrepreneur is a bold, brave step in your life. There will be many times when you are filled with doubt and fear. In order to succeed, you need to have the right mindset.
Jack Canfield’s The Success Principles is the ultimate guide to taking control of your mindset and helping you to focus on reaching your goals.
The size of this book may be intimidating, but by following one of the principles to “Chunk it Down,” it becomes more manageable. I recommend taking in 1-2 principles per week, complete the exercises, let the principles marinate, and the effort will change your life!
Everything is Figureoutable by Marie Forleo
As a business owner, you’re going to run into problems that can seem overwhelming or even insurmountable. Fortunately, Marie Forleo’s book helps teach us that, “Everything is Figureoutable.”
Learn to break down complex problems and retrain your brain to cope with negative thoughts in a more productive manner.
One of my favorite quotes from the book is, “Starting small and sucky beats staying stucky.” It’s a little silly, but a good reminder that even small steps are progress and the desire for perfection can paralyze us into inaction.
Habits & Action
The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Steven R. Covey
This book is a classic for a reason. Covey’s methods of building independence, then interdependence help you to create the habits necessary to be productive and efficient. It helps not only you, but to build good relationships with those around you.
I was first introduced to this book almost 30 years ago by a leader in the organization I worked for at the time and in it he wrote, “DON’T NEGLECT THIS BOOK!” Later in my career, we dissected the book to understand the habits and work to apply them. At least once a year I go back through the book and do a self-check to determine how well I embody the Habits.
Atomic Habits by James Clear
This is one of the best and most useful books on habits I’ve ever read. All of us have habits we would like to cultivate or get rid of, but entrepreneurs face a particularly difficult challenge. Being your own boss is great in many ways, but there’s also no one else to tell you what to do. Procrastination or uncertainty about what to do next can become a big problem.
Atomic Habits helps you to create good habits that stick. The book is full of practical knowledge that’s easy to implement. Once you’re finished reading it, you’ll have a clear path to building the habits you need to be successful.
The Miracle Morning for Entrepreneurs by Hal Elrod and Cameron Herold
The Miracle Morning for Entrepreneurs is the perfect book to help you start the day on the right foot. Many of us feel overwhelmed in the morning by trying to figure out what to do for the day or how to get it all done.
This version of The Miracle Morning, as opposed to the original by Hal Elrod, is especially focused on helping entrepreneurs “become the person that is easily and consistently attracting, creating and sustaining the extraordinary levels of success and income that you desire.” It also nicely builds on Covey’s quadrant II focus on activities that are important but not urgent that allow us to plan and be more strategic.
Working On the Business
Building a Story Brand by Donald Miller
You’ve created an awesome business, now how do you let people know about it? Many times, you’re going to be your own marketing department as an entrepreneur. Building a Story Brand is a helpful guide to creating a story that sells your product or service.
Nobody wants to be sold something, so if you can turn your business into a story about helping people solve their problems, they will be more likely to buy from you. This book is easy to follow regardless of your marketing knowledge and has plenty of examples to help you. Use this book as guide to help clarify your message help potential customers engage with your brand.
Never Split the Difference by Chris Voss
The word “negotiation” might fill you with a sense of dread, but it’s a fact of life for business owners. You’re going to have to negotiate at some point, and it’s often a high stakes scenario.
Chris Voss’ Never Split the Difference teaches you the skills to negotiate and be more persuasive in any type of situation. As a former FBI hostage negotiator, Voss teaches you how to become more persuasive and avoid defensive responses among many other skills that will help you become a more effective negotiator.
There are also many useful tools that can be downloaded to aid you in applying the practices covered in the book.
Never Eat Alone by Keith Ferrazzi
Another word that might fill you with dread is “networking.” Most people don’t like to mingle with a room full of strangers trying to use you for something. But Never Eat Alone will change the way you network.
The success of your business will depend on your ability to connect with other people. This book will help you create a plan to meet and leverage connections with the right people that will make your business grow.
Profit First by Mike Michalowicz
The financial aspect of running your own business can be incredibly intimidating. Profit First by Mike Michalowicz is a popular book to help you understand managing your business’ money in an effective way without an accounting degree.
As an entrepreneur we want to be successful; this book will help you take a closer look at what’s really going on your business so that you can set yourself up for profit. The book comes with resources to help you get set up with the Profit First system and I appreciate that it comes with practical action steps.
Let us know in the comments below which of these books have helped you and if you have any other recommendations of books for entrepreneurs. Best wishes on your Entrepreneur Journey – keep believing in your dreams!