Best Books for Entrepreneurs
The majority, but not all, of our guests have been social entrepreneurs. Which means that we’re chalk full of awesome reads for aspiring entrepreneurs. In fact, our “Most Recommended Reading” list is an ideal startup kit for entrepreneurs.
While that recommended reading list is rock solid, there are several other books our guests have recommended that you should incorporate into your social enterprise journey.
Tribes by Seth Godin
Recommended by Christy Wright.
People seek others to ban together. We have for centuries. While back in the olden days we were limited to find our communities by geography. Today we ban together with like-minded communities. Geography is no longer a constraint with the use of social media and the Internet. From music to religion to causes to even comic cultures, we seek out others like us across the globe to share ideas.
This is your tribe.
Most likely you are apart of several “tribes.” You’ll know them when you find them because you speak the same language. It’s that instantaneous click that says, “Yes! You get me.” Wherever there are groups of people, there is an opportunity for leadership.
If you are pursuing a social enterprise, it’s essential to create a tribe around your cause. These loyal fans will be invested in the work you are doing and help further your mission. Seth Godin’s book articulates exactly how to find these communities and lead them.
Tribes is on my 2016 reading list. I’ve read Seth Godin’s book Linchpin. Now that is a fascinating book on becoming an essential component of an organization. While it’s geared more toward intrapreneurs, I would highly recommend it. Well, let’s be honest. I would pretty much recommend anything by Seth Godin.
4 Hour Workweek by Tim Ferriss
Recommended by Mayer Dahan.
This book is straight up implementing systems and working more efficiently. When you are more mindful of how you invest your time, you can accomplish more. Tim Ferriss also touches on the need of classifying between important, urgent and nonessential. He is going to make you re-evaluate not only how you approach your day, but also how you go about your workflow.
Spoiler alert: After reading this book you are not going to be working four hours a week and raking in cash. Additionally, there is a lot of work behind building and systemizing a thriving business to the point the owner can step back to a minimal workweek.
The reason I would highly recommend this book is because it retrains you on how to view your time, money and work. For social entrepreneurs who are trying to take on the world, knowing how to maximize your time and efforts for the largest bang is key.
If that’s not enough, Tim Ferriss also makes you examine your choice of where you live. One of the concepts he emphasizes is mini retirements. This idea of adjusting your living geographical location and working to live out your “retirement” now is what spurred my husband and I to decide to move to Thailand.
Who says a book can’t change your life?
Entreleadership by Dave Ramsey
Recommended by Christy Wright.
I need to preface this recommendation with the statement that I am a HUGE Dave Ramsey fan. I’m such an avid fan that many of my colleagues have a ban on bringing up his name because history has show that I will launch into a zealous account of his teachings. Point blank, his teachings on money have changed my life.
Secondly Christy Wright is part of his team.
Phew! Glad I got that off my chest. Because now I can tell you why others view this book as such an instrumental tool in growing their business.
EntreLeadership is designed to for entrepreneurs who want to cultivate leadership. When you build a company around leaders, your ability to grow and thrive is limitless. These teachings give you the tools to cultivate teams that do your business proud.
You don’t have to have a multi-million dollar company to implement these practices. It fact, if you wait until then to implement these foundational principles, it’s a little late. Dave Ramsey shows you how core values like integrity and trust are the true foundation to creating a business that matters.
I read this book in hopes of learning how to start a business. I needed tactical tools such as bank accounts, billing and learning how to price. That’s not what this book is about. This book is for creating a company with a revered culture that is bigger than you. While Dave Ramsey covers his early days starting out, it’s geared more to growing a business into the company you are proud of.
For social entrepreneurs, this resource is clutch. Social entrepreneurs are tackling the world’s most complex and needed issues. But no matter the type of work you are doing, you need to have a solid team behind you. Dave Ramsey shows you not only how to attract but how to cultivate that team.
Delivering Happiness by Tony Hsieh
Recommended by Jenny Amaranini
While this book also made the cut for our intrapreneur list, Delivering Happiness is also a fantastic book for entrepreneurial leaders. This cross between a personal biography and a company culture evaluation highlights how you can help redefine how companies approach culture. Additionally, you’re going to see exactly how important company culture is for success beyond your own efforts.
Heads up: Tony Hsieh’s methods are going to surprise you. Well actually surprise is an understatement. Some are going to flat out shock you. He’s reimagining how we approach culture. To say he is thinking outside the box is an understatement.
This book is on my 2016 reading list. In fact, one day I would love to interview Tony Hsieh on his business. While Zappos isn’t a social enterprise, what he is accomplishing with leading the way in company culture is nothing short of a positive impact. When we have more CEO’s truly invested in the growth, development and happiness of their employees, we will have a beautiful working environment across the country. In fact, that would eventually spread across the world.
Until then, you can further this idea of prioritizing culture within your company. When you have dedicated and happy team members behind you, you will go much farther with your mission.