After hours of debating, screaming, cajoling, pondering, revising, pouting, thinking, reading, re-reading and analysing, we have finally arrived at our list of the top 20 books that every entrepreneur must read and that we would recommend to new clients.
Although these are our top 20 books, they are not listed in any particular order. Let us begin.
Title: Management: Tasks, Responsibilities, Practices
Author: Peter Drucker
The business guru Peter Drucker applies his worldly knowledge in this classic, and this is widely understood as his most influential work.
Title: How to be rich
Author: John Paul Getty
What a wonderful book. Oxford educated Getty shows his eloquence as well as his work ethic. Although this book has remained under the radar, any serious entrepreneur will be greatly rewarded, not just on the information on the acquisition of money, but how to think about relationships in business and life.
Title: Shoe Dog
Author: Phil Knight
A unanimous fave for all of us here, and this book is already a classic. There are many controversial things that have plagued Nike over the years, however this is one of the most eloquent and most candid accounts of a start-up that anyone could read.
Title: Good to Great
Author: Jim Collins
An asset to any library, and it has changed the way that many think about business and has coined iconic principles like ‘Confronting the Brutal Facts’, ‘First Who, Then What’, and many more.
Title: The E-Myth
Author: Michael E. Gerber
This is a paradigm-shifting book that will enable entrepreneurs to work on their business, rather than work in their business. The book explains why many become trapped by their businesses.
Title: The Art of War
Author: Sun Tzu
Quite simply… A masterpiece.
Author: Jack Welch and Suzy Welch
No nonsense. No BS. No waffle. Just results.
Title: Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion
Author: Robert Cialdini
This book is often read, but not often understood. The principles in this book are so powerful that they literally open the doors to understanding how society really works. If a person understands really this book then they will never need to entertain conspiracy theories ever again.
Title: The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People
Author: Steven R. Covey
Title: The Innovator’s Dilemma
Author: Clayton Christensen
This is a book that emphasizes the point that just because you may be the best today, an innovation may be around the corner that could disrupt your industry in a short space of time.
Title: Rich Dad Poor Dad
Author: Robert Kiyosaki and Sharon Lechter
Many doubt whether Rich Dad was a ‘real’ person, and regardless of that the information provided is a refreshing change from the stuffy ivory tower intellectual pomp that many academics put out. In this book there are clearly stated principles that apply universally and if followed will produce successful results.
Title: Think and Grow Rich
Author: Napoleon Hill
Although written in 1937 this work still stands the test of time and was commissioned by the richest man in the world at the time Andrew Carnegie. Napoleon Hill studied a large number of the greatest business minds of his age and his work is an outgrowth of their wisdom.
Title: The 4-Hour Workweek
Author: Tim Ferriss
This book is a controversial entry but it covers a perspective that would enable someone to be free and not wait until ‘old age’ until they really start to enjoy their life.
Title: Built to Last
Author: Jim Collins and Jerry I. Porras
Although this book has come under fire from certain professional academics, the insights here are profound and an essential addition to any entrepreneur’s library.
Title: How to Get Rich
Author: Felix Dennis
A wonderfully candid book from the founder of Dennis Publishing. This book covers his journey from aspiring R&B performer to one of the most successful entrepreneurs on the planet.
Title: Grinding It Out
Author: Ray Kroc
This is the story of how one of the most successful companies McDonalds grew from one location to a global empire. Ray goes back in history and reveals his past as a jazz musician and the inspirations that allowed him to see incredible opportunities while others missed them.
Title: Business Adventures
Author: John Brooks
This book is a series of incredibly entertaining and enlightening stories about the world of business and finance.
Title: Lean Startup
Author: Eric Ries
This book has caused a positive stir in the business world and is a valuable edition for any entrepreneur.
Title: Unlabel: Selling You Without Selling Out
Author: Marc Ecko
Another controversial choice, and yet there is no denying that a billion dollar empire is nothing to sneeze at, and he explains why in an honest way and it comes from a person that has really achieved success and not just written about it.
Title: Losing My Virginity
Author: Richard Branson
Richard Branson is arguably the world’s most popular entrepreneur and although Branson’s path was so unique there are many lessons to learn from his journey.