There are thousands of books out there claiming to be the end-all-be-all guide for successful entrepreneurship. But you don’t have time to read them all. Don’t worry, we’ve done the work for you. From leadership to growth to culture and more, these four books cover the most important topics for startup entrepreneurs. Best of all, they only take a few hours each to read.
1. “Dare to Lead” by Brené Brown
COURAGE | LEADERSHIP | MINDFULNESS
This New York Times Bestseller by vulnerability and bravery champion Brené Brown overviews how to use leadership to recognize the potential in your team and their ideas, and how to have the courage to develop that potential, even when things get hard. It teaches readers to move away from fear and scarcity and toward courage, abundance, and connection to lead with the heart. A must-read for anyone who influences or leads a team (i.e. everyone).
“With Dare to Lead, Brené brings decades of research to bear in a practical and insightful guide to courageous leadership. This book is a road map for anyone who wants to lead mindfully, live bravely, and dare to lead.”
—Sheryl Sandberg, COO, Facebook
2. “The Sustainable Startup” by Cameron Chell and Jamie Clarke
STRATEGY | LAUNCHING A NEW COMPANY | EVALUATING IDEAS
This book was born from the real-world wins and failures of entrepreneurs Cameron Chell and Jamie Clarke, and captures the philosophy of big ideas. It helps entrepreneurs reflect on their core business idea and its long-term viability. It’s split into 7 core principles, making it easy to both read and implement.
“This book is full of valuable information and strategic concepts based on real world “in the trenches” business experience. A must read for anyone serious about starting or improving a company. Highly recommended!”
3. “Run Your Business, Don’t Let It Run You” by Clay Mathile
INTENTIONALITY | BALANCE | SUSTAINABILITY
This book’s author is the billionaire entrepreneur who grew the Iams Company from $500K to $1M, and later sold it to P&G for more than $2B. He dives into proven management techniques that help entrepreneurs end the 16-hour-workday cycle to regain control of their lives at the office and at home. It’s perfect for anyone feeling overwhelm from overwork.
“Run Your Business, Don’t Let It Run You gives you the road map for ‘working on your business, not in it’ and for turning your big dreams into reality. And you don’t have to do it alone.”
—Anita Campbell, Publisher, Small Business Trends
4. “The Power of a Positive Team” by Jon Gordon
COLLABORATION | MINDSET | GROWING A TEAM
This worldwide bestseller is a synthesis of research, stories, and strategies that inspire entrepreneurs to stay optimistic in the face of challenge – a key attribute to leaders who quickly overcome and recover from adversity. His practices cover building trust, navigating difficult conversations, and more to build a positive, strong team.
“Jon and his principles have been very helpful to me and my team. I encourage you to read this book and discover the keys to building a great team.”
—Dave Roberts, manager of the Los Angeles Dodgers