10 Essential books for entrepreneurs


It only takes a few minutes on Amazon to realise there are hundreds, even thousands of books for every single stage of the entrepreneurial journey. Whether you’re a startup or a seasoned entrepreneur, whether you’re bootstrapping or just received a million bucks investment… there’s a book about it. Someone’s been there, done that, got the t-shirt and wrote a book about it!

While some of those books might just sound like a repeat of all the things you’ve heard before – every now and then, there’s a gem. That one book, that after you’ve read it, you will never ever look at that particular problem the same way. Sometimes you will never even look at life the same way (like after I read my first Ayn Rand book. Mind = Blown)!

These books become your guidebooks, your go-to books, your mentors and your cheer-leaders. No matter where you are in your entrepreneurial journey, here are the 10 most essential books, that will change the course of your journey forever. In a good way. So go ahead, set a goal, and make sure you read these 10 books before you make any further life altering decisions.

  1. The four hour work week by Timothy FerrisThe ultimate in lifestyle, time and money freedom. Who doesn’t want to work just four hours a week and get rich!? Well, here’s your step-by step guide to luxury lifestyle design.
  2. The Miracle Morning: The Not-So-Obvious Secret Guaranteed to Transform Your Life – Before 8AM by Hal ElrondWe all know the age-old adage ‘the early bird catches the worm’… well, Hal Elrond believes this is a not-so-obvious secret. We’ve heard it before, but this book makes you see it from a different angle again. Worth the read.
  3. 7 Habits of Highly effective People by Stephen R. CoveyThe ultimate life changing book about the science behind our habits, and how changing the way we go through our everyday lives, can have a significant effect on our overall success. I’m sure most of you have already read this… if not – do it now!
  4. Getting things done by David AllenIf you’ve ever felt like your life is disorganised – and you wanted to find a way or organising your life in such a way that you can finally get things done… then you need this book. I’ve never implemented his system exactly as set out in the book, but I got some great ideas and ways to implement them in my own way, to make my life more organised and to get things done.Wantrepreneurs… this book is for you!

  5. Nice Girls don’t get the corner office by Lois P. FrankelA book that’s particularly helpful for women in the corporate world, this book offers little bite-sized snippets of how women often jeopardise themselves in corporate settings… either through the silly things we say or do, or getting too emotional. So put on your big-girl panties, and read this. It’s a quick read.
  6. The Lean Startup: How Today’s Entrepreneurs Use Continuous Innovation to Create Radically Successful Businesses by Eric RiesWhether you’re bootstrapping, or got a large investment – we all need to know how to get more bang for our buck when starting a business. Learn how to get away with less, spend less and get your business to go that much further! PS. I still don’t have business cards… for any of my businesses!
  7. First things first by Stephen R CoveyIt goes without saying that you have to read the 7 Habits of Highly effective people book first… Where the 7 Habits covers the theory and concept behind Stephen Covey’s thoughts, this book gets down to the nitty gritty – and gets you to really take it a step further.
  8. The Startup Playbook: Secrets of the Fastest-Growing Startups from their Founding Entrepreneurs by David KidderI’ve heard so many times how 90% of all startups fail… that it really helps to sometimes just read about those who didn’t. Success stories always motivate you, and this book not only shares some of the hard hitting truths, but also the journeys that brought some of the most successful entrepreneurs to where they are today.
  9. How to win friends and influence people by Dale CarnegieOriginally published in 1934, this book was one of the first best-selling self help books ever published! It’s been updated for modern times, and there’s even now a version available ‘How to win friends and influence people in the digital age’… I’m guessing this should be quite interesting, and will definitely let you know once I’ve had a chance to read it.
  10. The purple cow by Seth GodinSeth Godin is one of those amazing people that just says it like it is. Every word you read from any of his books, will give you those “Oh my word that is sooooo true!” and “Exactly! I’ve always thought that but just never found the words to explain it!” moments.If you haven’t started your entrepreneurial career, and are still slaving away at your day-job… I would suggest that you read Lynchpin (also by Seth Godin) first. That was actually the first Seth Godin book I read a few years ago… and it literally changed my life! I became truly successful in my career and would probably have gone even higher up the corporate ladder had it not been for this Entrepreneur bug that kept niggling at me!