Why should you read books for entrepreneurs, businessmen, and startups? The answer is because one of the primary reasons why people are generally hesitant to start their own business is, they don’t know what to expect and they’re afraid of failure. Additionally, there is no guarantee that a running business will continue running. Even if a business is running smoothly, there is a chance that it is not running on its full potential throttle.
As for an entrepreneurial mind, there is a big difference between having a dream and a vision and putting in the required work to make it happen.
If you’re a budding entrepreneur, you need to start reading books on entrepreneurship. You need to read books that will teach you what it takes to raise funds, how to attract clients and customers, how to manage your time, and more.
Previously we wrote about 40 great motivational books for personal development, success, and happiness. This time it’s about starting and excelling in the business of your dreams. Good books on entrepreneurship will provide you with the knowledge you need to start your own business and help you develop skills that you can apply to your work.
Even if you are running a business already, reading great books written by authority writers on the subject will help you avoid obstacles, overcome challenges, and grow your business better and faster.
At ListPink, we have compiled this list of 50 great books for entrepreneurs, businessmen, and startups that will give you a leap in your endeavor.
1. How to Win Friends and Grow Rich ( Dale Carnegie, 1937)
How to Win Friends and Grow Rich is the ultimate sales book. In it, Carnegie goes over how to make friends, how to make the right friends, and how to turn those right friends into customers.
The reason this book is so useful for entrepreneurs is that you need to have a great network in order to be successful. The more people that are willing to support you, the greater your chances of success.
While we are living in a digital world now, there is still a lot of value in networking with real people. Carnegie’s advice is timeless and will help you make the connections that you need to take your business to the next level.
2. The Lean Startup (Eric Ries, 2011)
This book is not only for tech start-ups but for any kind of start-up. It’s all about how to run a business in a much smarter way than the traditional way. Eric Ries, who is a Silicon Valley entrepreneur, talks about how to get your business started in a way that will allow you to test your idea and make your business grow.
His ideas are based on the concept of lean manufacturing, which is a method that was developed by Toyota. It’s all about how to be effective with your cash and other resources, while still being able to grow quickly. He has a great way of looking at the business world, and he explains his ideas very well.
3. Think And Grow Rich (Napoleon Hill, 1937)
This is one of the best-selling books of all time, and it’s no wonder why. Napoleon Hill interviewed some of the most successful people in the world, and he wrote this book to teach us how they became so successful.
I love this book because it gives you advice that is relevant to all entrepreneurs, no matter what you do. It goes over major points such as goal setting, visualization, and more. This book is worth reading over and over again.
4. Rich dad poor dad ( Robert Kiyosaki, 2000)
Robert Kiyosaki is a well-known name in the business world, and for good reason. He is an entrepreneur who has done well for himself, and his knowledge and experience shine through in this book. Rich dad poor dad gives you a different perspective on money and how it works. It’s a book that will make you realize how much you really don’t know about money and how you should be using it.
5. The 4-Hour Work Week (Tim Ferriss, 2009)
This book is about escaping the 9-5 grind and creating a life that is both meaningful to you and profitable. It’s a simple concept, if you don’t like your job, change it.
The author Tim Ferriss has created a step-by-step guide to creating your ideal lifestyle. Simply put, this book is an excellent manual for creating a life that you will be proud of.
6. The Power of Broke (Daymond John, 2016)
Making millions of dollars is not the only way to be successful in business. Sometimes, making millions of dollars is the worst thing for your business. In this book, Daymond John shows you the importance of being broke and how that can help you become an entrepreneur. Daymond John is a well-known TV personality and businessman. He takes his years of experience and gives you valuable advice and tools that will help you make your business better.
7. The E-Myth Revisited (Michael Gerber, 2009)
Michael Gerber is the owner of a successful restaurant chain, and this book is considered a classic in the business world. His strategy is to inform you about what you are doing wrong in your business and how you can make it better. The E-Myth Revisited is one of the greatest books for entrepreneurs because of its straightforwardness and its ability to make you think about the things you are doing wrong in your business and how you can fix it.
8. Be Obsessed or Be Average (Grant Cardone, 2015)
Grant Cardone is one of the best motivational speakers and he has made a name for himself in the business world. Cardone is well-known for his straight-to-the-point attitude and his ability to get straight to the point in his speeches. In his book, he gives you valuable information on how to be successful in business and what to do to be an entrepreneur. He gives you advice on the best practices and how to be the best in a competitive market.
9. The Tipping Point (Malcolm Gladwell, 2000)
Malcolm Gladwell is a well-known writer and social scientist. In his book, he talks about how to make your business a success. His main focus is on how to reach that point where your business gains momentum and goes viral. He is well-known for his theories on marketing and how to get the public to love your idea.
10. Purple Cow (Seth Godin, 2003)
One of the most important factors in business is the ability to stand out. This is the main focus of Godin’s book, Purple Cow. It’s all about how to grab the attention of the public and the media and how to make yourself stand out from the crowd.
11. The Innovators Dilemma (Clayton Christensen, 2011)
The Innovator’s Dilemma is a book written by Clay Christensen, a Harvard business professor. It talks about how a company can go from being successful to being obsolete in a matter of years. Christensen believes that companies often don’t fail because of their competition, but because of their own innovation. As he says, “The companies that fail are the ones that are running behind their own curve.”
This book teaches you how to avoid this pitfall. It explains how you can keep your business ahead of the curve and avoid being overtaken by your competition.
12. The Art of the Start ( Guy Kawasaki, 2004)
This book is not actually about the psychology of selling, but more about the psychology of companies and how you can apply that to your own company. The author talks about the basics of starting a business, and what he calls “tipping points” that can dramatically change your business. He also gives advice on how to make your company stand out in the crowd, which is a big problem when there are thousands of companies just like yours.
This book is a definite asset for any entrepreneur who is just starting out. But any founder of a company can benefit from this book, even if you are the owner of a very large company. This book provides very interesting insight as well, which will keep you interested and make you want to read more.
13. The Art of Possibility ( Rosamund Stone Zander, 2002)
Reading this book will help you see things in a different light. The author, Rosamund Zander, talks about how the way we think directly affects the way we live. We all have thoughts that we don’t even realize we have that directly affect our lives.
This book is for anyone who is stuck in a rut or who has a hard time thinking outside the box. It can help you think differently about your business or the way you approach life in general. It is a good read for anyone who is going through a rough time and needs a fresh perspective.
14. Secrets of the Millionaire Mind ( T. Harv Eker, 2005)
The author of this book has a different approach to selling, but it is very effective. He talks a lot about the psychology of money, and how people react to it. The author discusses the idea of “money blocks” and how they are affecting your business and your life.
One very interesting aspect of this book is that the author also breaks down the difference in the way that rich people think, versus the way that poor people think. This book is very useful for anybody who wants to know how the mind of a millionaire works. The book is also very entertaining, as the author has a very humorous way of writing that will keep you on edge while you read.
15. The Mythical Man-Month ( Frederick P. Brooks Jr., 1995)
This book gives great advice about managing teams and employees. Every company has a team of people, whether it is a small company or a large company. If you manage the team correctly, you will be able to do great things with your company, but if you manage it wrong, then your company could go down the drain. This book is a great place to start managing your team.
16. Bootstrap Startup ( Brant Cooper and Patrick Vlaskovits, 2012)
This book is especially geared towards the tech crowd, but it can be beneficial to anyone in the business world. This book provides valuable information and strategies about how to start a business with little to no money. It is more of a guide than a textbook.
This book gives you tips on how to get started and things to avoid when you are just starting out. The authors of this book also give you actual examples of situations that they have been in and how they overcame them. While you probably won’t be starting a business from scratch, this book provides insight into how you can still learn things from it even if you are already a busy entrepreneur.
17. A Whack on the Side of the Head ( Roger von Oech, 1983)
The title of this book may be a little misleading. What it really means is a fresh take on your ideas and how to turn them into real-life tangible items. This book is for anybody who is looking to create something new, whether it is a product, a business, or anything else.
The author talks about how to do this by using your senses and imagination. He also talks about the power of positive thinking, which is a great asset for any entrepreneur. This is a great book to keep on hand just in case you need a little inspiration in a bad time. The best entrepreneurs are the ones who can think outside the box and create a new idea, and this book will help you do just that.
18. The Four Steps to the Epiphany ( Steve Blank, 2005)
An entrepreneur’s journey isn’t easy. It takes time and dedication to get your product to market and to get people to buy it. In this book, Steve Blank tells you what to do in the beginning stages of an idea.
The Four Steps to the Epiphany is a tool used to help a startup, whether it’s a product or a service, and it tells you how to use customer discovery and validation to make sure you’re on the right track and that you have a solid idea. It’s a great resource for startups and entrepreneurs, and it’s very easy to read and understand, making it a good starting point for anyone.
19. The Wealth of Nations (Adam Smith, 1776)
This book has been one of the most influential books in the age we live in. The book has inspired some of the most well-known people in the world, including the founder of the world’s largest retailer, Wal-Mart.
Adam Smith was not only writing about wealth and the business world, but he was also a professor at the University of Glasgow. In this book, he goes over topics such as the division of labor, the difference between profits and wages, and the accumulation of capital. Adam Smith was a pioneer in understanding the business world, and his work has inspired the world to follow in his footsteps.
20. The Startup Owner’s Manual ( Steve Blank and Bob Dorf, 2012)
The Startup Owner’s Manual is definitely one of the top books for entrepreneurs. This book is meant for anyone who is considering starting a company or is already in the process. Even if you don’t think you’re an entrepreneur, this book is for you. This book goes through every aspect of starting a company, from funding to hiring to marketing.
The Startup Owner’s Manual is broken up into three sections – the first section is called “The Customer Development Model,” and it gives you a basic outline of the critical elements of starting a business (and how to get them). It also explains how to build a prototype and how to test it out to see if it’s going to succeed.
The next section is called “The Execution Model,” which focuses on how to get your product or service out to the customers and how to make sure they’re satisfied. The last section is called “The Operational Model,” which goes over managing a company and all the things that come with it.
21. The Innovator’s Solution ( Clayton Christensen, 2003)
Clayton Christensen is the godfather of disruption and this book is a brick. It’s massive, but it’s incredibly easy to read and understand. Christensen boils down the biggest reasons why businesses fail and why they succeed. He takes you through the logic of innovating and how to do it right.
This book will give you the tools you need to make sure the business you start or the business you’re working for isn’t going to fail. It’s easy to get caught up in the hype of being innovative, but it takes more than just a good idea. There are steps you have to take to make sure you’re doing it right. The Innovator’s Solution will show you how.
22. The hard thing about hard things (Ben Horowitz, 2014)
Every entrepreneur has to have a strong will in order to get through the obstacles and challenges that are sure to come their way. This book by Ben Horowitz is an easy read that gives you a different perspective of what it takes to be an entrepreneur, how to deal with difficulties, and how to become a better business person.
23. The $100 Startup (Chris Guillebeau, 2012)
Starting a business is not as expensive as you think. If you want to start a business, but don’t have any money to do it, this book is perfect for you. Chris Guillebeau will show you how to start a business with a spare $100 and how to make a profit from it.
The great thing about this book is that anyone can learn something from it. It has information for the young entrepreneur and the seasoned one. This book is a great way to gather ideas about starting a business without spending a lot of money.
24. Steve Jobs (Walter Isaacson, 2011)
Steve Jobs is one of the most successful entrepreneurs of our time, and everyone who wants to be successful should read this book. Jobs lead Apple from a small company to a major enterprise. He also directed Pixar, one of the most successful animation companies. Jobs was a great leader and truly revolutionized technology.
This biography follows Jobs’ rise to fame or fall, depending on how you look at it. Jobs had an amazing ability to take something that no other person would even look at and make it successful. This book is a great learning tool for any entrepreneur.
25. Who Moved My Cheese? (Spencer Johnson, 1998)
This book is all about how to handle change in your life. Change is the only thing that is constant in life, and yet many people aren’t prepared to handle it. In fact, many people who don’t handle change very well get so paranoid by the change that they make the situation worse.
If you want to be an entrepreneur, you’re going to have to be able to handle change. This book will help you do that on a personal level as well as on a business level.
26. The Millionaire Next Door (Thomas Stanley, 1997)
If you’re going to be an entrepreneur, you’re going to have to learn to manage your money well. This book will teach you how to manage your money, as well as your time and energy, in order to be a more effective entrepreneur.
It also teaches you a lot about how to handle money in a way that will help you to be a more effective entrepreneur. It’s a very valuable resource.
27. The Personal MBA (Josh Kaufman, 2011)
This book is a great resource for learning all of the key elements of the business. Instead of having to take a lot of extra time and money to go back to school and get a degree in business, you can get all of the info in one place.
28. The Professional’s Guide to Value Pricing (Joe Knight, 2016)
This book is a very valuable resource for any entrepreneur who wants to have a successful business. It teaches you how to understand your market and how to make the most of your time. It also teaches you how to price your services in such a way that your customers will value you and your services.
No matter what business you’re in, you’re going to need to be able to price your services and products in such a way that they’re appealing to the customer. This book will help with that.
29. The Art of Business Planning (Bob Bly, 2003)
This book is all about how to make a business plan that is going to be effective in your business. You can’t go into a business unless you have a plan, and you can’t be successful unless you follow that plan.
30. Rich Woman (Karen Hunt, 1997)
This book is the epitome of the saying, “money makes the world go round.” Hunt goes over the basics of how to get to financial freedom by starting a business, adopting a new lifestyle, and becoming a millionaire.
This is not a book about how to make a million dollars overnight; this is a book about creating a new way of living that will eventually lead to making a million dollars. The author teaches you how to get out of the rat race and into a comfortable and happy lifestyle.
31. True North (Bill George, 2003)
Knowing your own values and goals is an important step to being an entrepreneur and leading a successful business. If you don’t know who you are and what you stand for, how can you expect others to know that you are trustworthy and credible?
If you aren’t leading your business in a direction that you stand behind, then what is the point of being an entrepreneur at all? This book will help you figure out your values and goals and help you to be a more successful entrepreneur.
32. The Effective Executive ( Peter Drucker, 1966)
This was one of the first management books I read, and it’s been a popular and timeless business book since it was first published over 40 years ago.
Peter Drucker talks about the effective executive and the effective organization, and how to make them both work together. He also gives valuable insights into how to make an organization efficient and productive by focusing on the people.
It’s important to remember that your business is made up of people, and they are just as important as any other part of the business. Understanding how to get the most out of your people is just as important as the product you create.
33. Getting Things Done ( David Allen, 2001)
There are two types of people in the world: those who are organized and those who wish they were. Entrepreneurs fit into the first category and that’s why Allen’s book is so helpful. It’s one of the best books for entrepreneurs who have tons of ideas, but never seem to get them done. Getting Things Done is a helpful resource on how to stay organized and get the things done that you want without wasting time.
34. Crushing It! (Gary Vaynerchuk, 2010)
Gary Vaynerchuk’s main idea is that everyone is an entrepreneur if they want to be. He believes that you have to be a hustler and a risk taker to get anywhere in the world, so if you aren’t doing those things, you’re not an entrepreneur. In this book, Gary Vaynerchuk gives you his own experiences and wisdom on how to be successful in the world of entrepreneurship.
35. Start With Why ( Simon Sinek, 2009)
This book is about how to get people to fall in love with your product or service. This book is about selling your idea to the people who need it the most. In this book, Sinek tells you to start thinking about your business in a different way. He tells you to focus on the “why” of your business.
The “why” is the passion behind your business. Why are you doing what you are doing? What is keeping you awake at night? What are your ultimate goals? Knowing the “why” is the foundation of any business venture. Focus on the “why” and you will find the “how” and “what.”
36. Getting to Yes ( Roger Fisher, William Ury, 1981)
This book is one of the most popular and best-selling books of all time. It is geared towards the business world, but it is also a great book for entrepreneurs. It is a must-have for anyone who has to negotiate contracts, buy and sell real estate, or do any type of business transaction.
This book has helped millions of people reach agreements, compromise, and solve disputes. There are a lot of different negotiating strategies in this book, but the biggest takeaway is to focus on the end result and not the win.
37. The Power of Positive Thinking ( Norman Vincent Peale, 1952)
When you are an entrepreneur, you are going to have setbacks. You are going to have times when you feel like you are failing. You are going to have times when you feel like giving up. When these times come, you need to learn how to positively think. You need to know what to think about when you are going through a rough patch.
This book is a classic. It gives you insight into how to think differently and how to stay positive. It is one of the best books for entrepreneurs who are going through tough times.
38. The Startup of You (Reid Hoffman, 2012)
Entrepreneurs are a special breed of people. They have the unique ability to see opportunities where others don’t and take risks when others are too afraid to even try. The Startup of You is a great book for entrepreneurs, especially if you’re in the early stages of your career.
This book, written by the founder of LinkedIn, is all about your career and how you should be treating it as a startup. A lot of people treat their careers like a job, and that’s not the way it should be done. You should always be trying to grow and expand, just like a business.
39. Measure What Matters (John Doerr, 2014)
The world is changing with technology and the internet at a rapid pace. Many entrepreneurs struggle with staying relevant. This book is a guide to help entrepreneurs know what they have to do in order to stay relevant.
This book focuses on the importance of staying ahead of the game and making sure that your business stays relevant. It also touches upon the importance of measuring what matters and focusing on the big picture. Entrepreneurs tend to get caught up in the little things and this book focuses on putting your attention on what matters most.
40. Click Millionaires (Scott Fox, 2011)
Scott Fox knows a thing or two about marketing and he wants to help you learn how to make money online. This book will open your eyes to many opportunities that you didn’t know existed. This is not for the tech-illiterate, but if you are an entrepreneur who is well on the way to making money online, this book will take you to the next level.
41. Dying for a Paycheck ( Jeffrey Schaler, 2004)
According to the book, a depressing number of people are working jobs that they hate, for long hours, with little or no profit. Why? Because they are more focused on the paycheck than they are on the job. This book is a great reality check for anyone who thinks that they are stuck in a dead-end, pointless job.
The book discusses how to escape the “Rat Race”. It gives great examples of people who have made it out and started their own businesses, and how they did it. The book is very inspirational and motivating. It gives you the incentive to get up and do something with your life.
42. Founders at Work (Jessica Livingston, 2007)
This is a wonderful book that is a collection of interviews with some of the greatest minds in technology and business. This is a great book for any entrepreneur to read because it gives you some insight into the minds of some of the greatest entrepreneurs in the world and how they started their businesses. It’s a great book to give you ideas and to help you get inspired.
43. The Peter Principle ( Laurence J. Peter and Raymond Hull, 1969)
The Peter Principle is a book that has been around for years. It’s all about the idea that promotion in a company is based on performance, but eventually, everyone who does well in a company will be promoted. When they are promoted, they will have to do something that is outside of their skill set. This will cause them to fail, and they will be demoted.
Basically, it means that you will eventually be promoted into a position where you don’t do well. This is a book that is recommended for all entrepreneurs, especially those who have been in business for a while. You have probably seen this happening to your employees at one point or another.
44. The Art of Non-Conformity (Chris Guillebeau, 2009)
This book is about breaking out of the mainstream and finding your own way. You don’t have to follow the rules of society, but don’t throw them out completely. The book encourages you to find your own way to success and happiness.
Being an entrepreneur is not about being normal. You don’t have to fit into the corporate mold or follow the rules of society. You can create your own path. This book is all about finding that path and making sure that you stick to it.
45. Rework ( Jason Fried and David Heinemeier Hansson, 2010)
This is a quick read that can be finished in an afternoon. The book is a refreshing new approach to the way business is run and the way people work. It takes you through the way to manage yourself and the way to manage your company by taking your brain out of the way and going with what seems to be instinct for a lot of people. Relying on your brain first can be a good thing, but it can also get in the way of what you want to do. This book will get you to stop thinking so much and start doing more.
46. How to Start a Business and Make it Grow ( John J. Nesheim, 2015)
This book is great for the entrepreneur who has already had a couple of businesses and is looking for a way to improve on the last one. If you are looking for a new idea for a business or just want to make the current one better, this is a great book for you. It is a very quick read and the strategies are very easy to understand. It is the perfect book for the entrepreneur who isn’t a business guru but wants to learn more about how to make their current business run better.
47. The Obstacle Is the Way (Ryan Holiday, 2014)
The Obstacle is the Way is a great book for the entrepreneur who has already started their business and is looking for ways to get over the inevitable bumps in the road. This book will help you overcome those obstacles during your journey to becoming a successful entrepreneur.
The book is a great read for the entrepreneur who is suffering from self-doubt, pesky customers, and just plain old bad luck. It will help you see the “obstacle” from a different perspective and allow you to use the obstacle in your favor.
48. The Entrepreneur Mind ( Kevin D. Johnson, 2008)
This book really gets to the heart of what it takes to be an entrepreneur – a deep understanding of human behavior. Kevin D. Johnson is a professional psychologist who has used his knowledge to create a very useful book for entrepreneurs.
In each chapter, the author gets into different elements of the psyche and how they apply to entrepreneurs. If you’re looking for a quick read, it may be a bit much for you. But if you want to know the very core of what it takes to be an entrepreneur, then you should give this book a shot.
49. The Simplicity Cycle ( Dan Ward, 2008)
This book was written by Dan Ward, one of the world’s leading experts on simplicity. He identifies three stages in the simplicity cycle. The first stage is added, the second is subtract, and the third is removed. In the first stage, you add in the things that are needed to achieve your goal. Next, you subtract out the things that aren’t useful to achieving your goal. In the third stage, you remove things to achieve simplicity.
As an entrepreneur, you have to achieve simplicity in your product or service. You have to strip it down to its essentials so that you can achieve your goal – making money. By reading this book, you’ll be able to see how this process works and how you can apply it to your business.
50. The 80/20 Principle ( Richard Koch, 1998)
This book will help you learn how to concentrate your efforts on the 20% of your business that will create 80% of your results. The 80/20 Principle is a way to see which tasks are the most important and which ones are the least. This is applicable to any business and any kind of business.
As an entrepreneur, you have to have the ability to cut out all the unimportant things and focus on the most important. In order to keep your business going, you have to see where you are spending your time and energy. Take a good look at what you are doing and see what you could be doing differently.
These were the 50 great must-read books for entrepreneurs and businessmen. Did you read any other books about success in businesses and startups? We would love if you mention the name of the book in the comments below.