The thing about being an entrepreneur is that you’re always learning. You can never rest on your laurels because the market is always changing, and so your ideas and approaches need to be as well. And, while expensive conferences and think tanks are some of the ways to keep your juices flowing, often a $20 book will do just as good a job – plus, you’ll get to keep it forever!
Whether you’re just starting out with your big idea, or an experienced entrepreneur looking for some new inspiration, here are five books that every successful entrepreneur needs to read, in order to ensure that their business is the best it can possibly be:
The Start-Up of You by Reid Hoffman and Ben Casnocha
Reid Hoffman is the co-founder and chairman of the highly popular professional social media site, LinkedIn, so you know that his strategies for being a great entrepreneur work. In this book, he teams up with Ben Casnocha to provide you with an excellent strategy plan for people who want to get into entrepreneurship. Their biggest tip? You need to be in ‘permanent beta’ mode, which means that you need to be: always starting some thing new, and forever a work in progress.
The Four Steps to the Epiphany by Steven Gary Blank
Blank’s message in this book is simple, but it seems counter-intuitive when you first hear it. He argues that you need to be a ‘lean start up’; you don’t need to have all of the components in place with your product, but you just need to get it out there, in the market’s consciousness as early as possible.
How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie
Essential reading for those wanting to improve their networking skills, this book provides tips and tricks for those who aren’t always too confident when it comes to making contacts and pitching ideas. Dale Carnegie’s book may have been published almost eighty years ago, but it turns out people haven’t changed much – the ideas included in the book are still relevant and applicable today. Its strategies are simple, but effective, and might just be what you need to make a splash at that next key event.
Good to Great by Jim Collins
Ever wondered why some businesses flourish and others die? It’s not always about the product they’re selling, but, rather, the organizational structures of the businesses themselves. While this book is pitched at those working in developed companies, it is also excellent reading for start-ups who want to have an understanding of what to avoid as their business grows.
Playing to Win by A.G. Lafley and Roger L. Martin
Lafley was the CEO of Procter and Gamble during one of the company’s highest growth periods. This book is all about the strategy that will give your idea and your company the competitive edge. It’s an easy read, broken into the five key choices that businesses need to make in order to ensure that they will win their market.
Lucy Ward is a student from Sydney. If she wants to fulfil her entrepreneurial dreams, she should get started on acquiring some equipment finance.