The Top 10 Best Entrepreneur Books

The 10 Best Entrepreneur Books You Should Read!

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Many entrepreneurs are extremely eager to jump in, start their new business and make some money! And at getlion, we totally understand that. But there is so much more to being a well-rounded entrepreneur, ready to tackle what business life throws at you. In fact, one of the best ways to prepare for entrepreneurship (yet the most easily skipped) is self-improvement through, you guessed it… reading.  

Wait, what!? Yes – successful entrepreneurs read. Like, a lot! Bill gates reads more than 50 books a year. One of the greats, Mark Cuban, reads more than 3 hours every day. But getting around to reading the best entrepreneur books on the best seller list is often overlooked when you’re a busy business owner. Ironically though, with the knowledge learned from captains of industry, it empowers any businessperson to wield their sword of entrepreneurship more nimbly and effectively.  Elon Musk was once asked ‘How did you learn to build rockets?’. His reply: ‘I read books’. Take a look at a recent getlion blog post on Elon Musks’ net worth, to see if this strategy paid off for him.   

It would be ill advised to drop the ball on your path to success just because you didn’t ever care to open a book. Accountant and award-winning author Tom Corley studied the role that reading plays in success. He found that wealthy people (those defined with an annual income of 160,000 US Dollars or more, and a liquid net worth of 3.2 million-plus US Dollars) read books focussed on self-improvement, education, and success. Yet, poorer people (defined as those with an annual income of 35,000 US Dollars or less, and a liquid net worth of 5,000 US Dollars or less) read largely to be entertained.

This study, and countless others, show us that reading plays a massive role in business success, but reading a True Crime novel won’t exactly help you reach your entrepreneurial goals. That is why reading the right books are crucial to your growth. 

We have put together a list of the 10 Best Books for Entrepreneurs that will aid in your journey to success.

1. ‘The $100 Start-up’ by Chris Guillebeau

Chris Guillebeau has never had a ‘real job’ or even earned a regular pay check. Instead he finds ways to turn his passion into an income. In 2013, Chris accomplished his goal of visiting all 193 countries in the world. In this book, he hits the nail on the head when explaining why you don’t need a lot of money to start your business. Featuring 50 case studies of people who have built businesses earning 50,000 US Dollars or more from a minute investment – often 100 US Dollars or even less. To put the cherry on the cake, majority of these people had no special skill-sets to begin with, but discovered aspects of their personal passions that could be monetized in one way or another. ‘The $100 Start-up’ is one of those books that dig deep. You will get to know how much money each entrepreneur had to start with and what they did in the first few weeks to gain traction. On the flip side, the book also covers the mistakes that were made by some of the entrepreneurs, which is always useful information. This book will help you as an entrepreneur find the middle ground between your passions and skills, and what other people are willing to pay for.

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2. The 4-Hour Workweek by Timothy Ferriss

No ‘Best Entrepreneur Books’ list would ever be complete without ‘The 4-hour workweek’ by Tim Ferriss, the life-hacker extraordinaire. Translated in to 35 different languages and selling over 1.3 Million copies, ‘The 4-hour workweek’ has held a spot on The New York Times bestseller list for over seven years. This business book is guaranteed to constantly challenge conventional thinking, helping readers to think outside of the box and push boundaries like never before.  Ferris will show you that living a working life followed by retirement is an outdated concept and that there is a way to better your quality of life. What this book comes down to is, productivity and effectiveness – covering topics such as prioritizing, outsourcing and automation. One of our favourite things about this book is that you will learn how to use time and location to gain financial leverage. All in all, this book deserves to hold that New York Times Bestseller spot, providing invaluable tools to entrepreneurs and giving them the best chance of success.

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3. 90 Rules for Entrepreneurs by Marnus Broodryk

The book is based on Marnus Broodryk’s business experiences, combined with valuable insights from friends and fellow entrepreneurs. Guiding new entrepreneurs to avoid the pit falls, as well as seizing opportunities, the South African self-made millionaire Marnus Broodryk believes that a business should be more than just a venture, it should be an adventure. The massive difference between a successful journey, rather than a wasted one, is knowing when to do what. That is what ’90 Rules for Entrepreneurs’ is all about. It’s all about the experience. The rules of hustle. This is your handbook to being an entrepreneur, a millionaire and most importantly, happy.

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4. Deep Work by Cal Newport

Author and Professor Cal Newport defines ‘Deep Work’ as the ability to focus on a demanding task for extended periods of time without distraction, a skill that’s becoming very rare. With it becoming so rare, it simultaneously becomes a more valuable skill to have. In essence, deep work is a skill that is crucial to your ability to master complicated tasks and produce better results in a shorter period of time. Not only will this skill super-charge your effectiveness but Cal also argues that it is the key to a true sense of fulfilment. The book is divided in to two parts for entrepreneurs. The first part talks about how cultivating a deep work ethic will produce monumental results in almost any profession. The second part is dedicated to four detailed ‘rules’ for transforming your mind and habits to develop the ability to ‘go deep’. While majority of people are throwing away their valuable time in a series of shallow tasks such as endlessly and pointlessly scrolling on social media, the most successful people are focusing on things that actually matter.

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5. Mastery by Robert Greene

The New York Times best selling author Robert Greene believes that everybody possesses the potential to become a master. In this book, Greene lays down the fundamentals of becoming a master: Learn the secrets of your industry, commit to a strict apprenticeship and absorb the knowledge of those with years of experience. Additionally, Robert presents the behaviours of true masters such as Leonardo da Vinci and nine other contemporary masters interviewed for the book. He then brings to light the common traits held by these masters to show that success isn’t about what you know, but all about who you are. Our favourite part of the book is that it will show you which master traits you already have, and how to develop the ones you don’t.

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6. The Hard Thing About Hard Things by Ben Horowitz

This book is endorsed by some of the best entrepreneurs we have seen in recent times, such as Mark Zuckerberg, Larry Page and Peter Thiel. As one of the most respected and experienced entrepreneurs to come from Silicon Valley, Horowitz offers indispensable advice on building and running a business to its full potential. Many people highlight the excitement of life as an entrepreneur, but in this book, Ben also shines a light on the difficulties and challenges entrepreneurs have to face. What is especially interesting is that Horowitz starts by arguing the fact that there is no formula for success, but that you can learn lessons from others failures and hardships that are invaluable. This book was born out of Ben’s long-time personal blog, including most of his original posts compiled and transformed into an incredible guide to navigating the inevitable problems that occur in the world of business.

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7. Crushing it! By Gary Vaynerchuk

Four-time New York Bestselling author Gary Vaynerchuk cranks up the heat with the release of Crushing it! Although it is not to be confused with his older ‘Crush it’ business book that was released in 2009. This book showcases new lessons, tactics and strategies taken from his own experience, as well as many other powerful influencers and entrepreneurs. In this inspiring book, Gary goes through every social media platform, and shows you how to use it to increase your overall brand awareness and grow your business. By the time you finish this book, you will be able to act on the advice given by Gary and build a powerful brand on all major social media platforms. This book isn’t just about professional and financial success, but living on your own terms.

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8. Rework by Jason Fried and David Hansson

There are a whole lot of business books out there that offer entrepreneurs the same old cliché advice of – “Study up, write a business plan and pitch to investors” but this isn’t one of them! This New York Time’s best-selling book shatters outdated conception and instead challenging mainstream business mindset and culture. Providing a whole new way of thinking, the book shows you that you need far less than you think to start a successful enterprise. What if there is a way of achieving that without needing a fancy office, more staff or investors? There is. What you need is to prioritize more, to say ‘no’ more, to stop talking, researching, and planning and actually start doing. Our favourite thing about this book is that you learn why plans are harmful, outside investors are sometimes unnecessary, and ignoring the competition is best.

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9. Never Eat Alone by Keith Ferrazzi

Just like all the other books on this list, this one is essential. In this book, Keith Ferrazzi demonstrates the power of relationships in the business world. He also lays out the mindset and the steps he uses to connect with thousands of people. The book also outlines the timeless strategies used by some of the world’s most connected people, such as Winston Churchill and Bill Clinton. It presents a set of proven principles and actionable tactics that you can use to further your journey. 

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10. Purple Cow by Seth Godin

Last on our list is ‘Purple Cow’, coming from multi-bestselling author and marketing guru Seth Godin. In this book, Seth demonstrates how the four traditional P’s of marketing (product, price, promotion, place) don’t work like they used to. Why? Because there is a new P on the block, one that is now more important – Purple Cow. ‘Purple Cow’ is Seth’s metaphor for something spectacular, phenomenal, counterintuitive and remarkable. After seeing a few cows, they become boring, but imagine seeing a purple cow, that would grab everyone’s attention. To be a successful entrepreneur it is extremely important to stand out from your competition, just like a Purple Cow, and this book will show you how.

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