The Top 3 Business Books Every Entrepreneur MUST READ [With Explanations]

read business books

To succeed in business, knowledge is power. And power leads to profit. Reading business books or listening to podcasts from your favorite entrepreneurs should be part of your daily routine.

Some of the most successful business people in the world are avid readers. Bill Gates reads one book a week. Warren Buffet famously uses up to 80% of his day to read, lapping up around 500 pages a day. Even Oprah Winfrey credits her success to reading.

Consultants, masterminds, and coaching are all great investments. But they can be costly. Kindles and Amazon are young business owners’ best friends. Business books for entrepreneurs are practically free on these platforms. And they offer just as much valuable information. 

Not sure where to start? Read on to find our top 3 books for entrepreneurs, and how you can create a reading habit to boost your business.

Business Books For Entrepreneurs: An Overview

How much time a day are you spending watching TV rather than developing your knowledge?

Even if you’re working the 9-5 grind, there’s still plenty of time in the evenings to dedicate to reading. At work, if you take time out to read rather than tick things off your to-do list, this might seem counterproductive. 

It’s easy to fall into the above mindset. But we’re here to highlight how beneficial reading business books can be.

How Reading Business Books Helps Business Growth

You’ll be surprised how much impact reading business books can have. Reading offers an abundance of personal growth benefits that can transfer into business growth. 

Reading Fosters Empathy

Both business books for startups and fictional content introduces you to a world of characters you’d never meet in your average day. From this, you learn new perspectives and become more empathetic toward others. 

In business, understanding people better allows you to reach your target audience in a way that resonates. Empathy is one of the most important skills you’ll need as a fair business owner. With it, you’ll create a better working environment and stronger customer loyalty.

Reading Improves Vocabulary

Business books for startups are a great way to gain industry-related vocabulary. Extensive vocabulary will make it easier to communicate with customers, staff, and stakeholders. 

You’ll also find it much easier to explain your ideas in a way that inspires others to get on board (or invest!).

See Cause & Effect In Action

The best books for young entrepreneurs offer real-life examples of cause-and-effect relationships. A key part of critical thinking is understanding how choices can affect other things. Once you’ve got to grips with this concept, you’ll be able to make accurate predictions and seamless solutions for your business.

Reading Builds Perseverance

The sense of accomplishment after completing a task often motivates us to start and complete another. The best books for young entrepreneurs are difficult to get into, but sticking with them builds perseverance and unlocks valuable knowledge. 

When building a brand or scaling a business, nothing is ever plain sailing. The difference between those that succeed and those that don’t is perseverance.

Reduces Stress

Reading stops the brain from focusing on too many things at once. Meaning distractions and worries melt away. This eases tensions in our physical bodies, as well as reduces mental stress. 

With less stress, your mind can stay open to new ideas. Just 30 minutes of reading a week can make you feel 20% better about your life. Rather than wasting the evening winding down with some mind-dulling TV, curl up with a book instead. 

There are so many other ways reading business books can benefit you. From problem-solving to increasing intelligence, there’s really no downside.

The Best Business Books For Entrepreneurs 

Every business owner will have their own list of must-read books for entrepreneurs. If you’re at a loss for where to start, here are our top 3 business books for entrepreneurs. 

1. The Slight Edge 

The Slight Edge by Jeff Olson taught us that there’s no such thing as ‘coasting’. Your business is only ever on the way up, or down. 

It offers a great explanation of the Compound Effect; how everything we do – or don’t do – has an impact on the future. Having a ‘day off’ or delaying something could have a compound effect on your business in the future.

Business books like The Slight Edge remind you that no business is an ‘overnight success.’ People who ‘get lucky’ were probably working hard years before you even knew they existed. It’s a nice little reminder that even those minor tasks you complete now, can lead to great things.

The book lets you develop the skills needed to process information slightly differently. So you can create a path to success through the small daily tasks you complete.

business book - the slight edge

2. How To Win Friends And Influence People 

How To Win Friends And Influence People by Dale Carnegie is one of the best books for entrepreneurs. You’ll see it on almost every list of business books out there. 

The book has become one of the best-selling business books of all time and is a staple for anyone managing a team.

In fact, Warren Buffet was so affected by the book he signed up for a public speaking course with Carnegie himself. 

It shares tips on how to get people to like you, how to become a better listener, and how to win people over. This infamous business psychology book offers inspirational quotes to you both in and outside of work. 

Our biggest tip for building relationships? Enter every room or conversation with the enthusiasm of your pet dog. People like to be around people that are happy, excited, and passionate. (People also like to be around dogs…)

business book - how to win friends and influence people

3. The Obstacle Is The Way

Our final recommendation for business books is The Obstacle Is The Way by Ryan Holiday. Named after a line from Marcus Aurelius’s diary, it has become a cult classic and a must-read book for entrepreneurs. It teaches the disciplines of perception, action, and will. 

It’s all about changing your perspective: Seeing obstacles as opportunities. It’s been a great help over the past few years, helping people use the pandemic to grow their businesses productively.  

The book is heavily inspired by Stoicism – a philosophical practice used by some of the greatest thinkers in the world.

business book - the obstacle is the way

Why Business Owners Need To Read More

Reading is invaluable – regardless of whether you intend to start up a business. But why should business owners specifically read more business books?  

It Opens You Up To New Opportunities 

The simplest answer to the above question is: You don’t know what you don’t know. 

The more you read, the more information and ideas you have access to. With vast knowledge, you can link solutions together, connect dots and find quicker, more efficient ways to achieve your goals. Business books highlight how others have been able to exploit opportunities so that you can do the same. Only quicker.

You Can Find Answers To Business Problems 

If you’re having a problem in your business, it’s unlikely it’s anything new.

Someone somewhere will have had the same problem. Which means somewhere out there is a tried-and-tested solution. 

Why risk trial and error? Read about someone else’s experiences to find innovative solutions without derailing your progress.

It Helps You To Make Informed Choices 

Whether you have a specific problem, or simply want more clarity on a business idea, reading is the key. It’ll help you make informed decisions that can broaden your business opportunities.

It Brings Out Creativity 

No business can scale without innovation. Using the same techniques that have worked in the past may offer slow and steady growth. Eventually, though, your business will stand still. 

Innovation requires new knowledge and creativity. And getting your head into a book can do just the trick.

How Reading Business Books Makes You More Money

We’ve proved reading can help your personal and business growth, and how business books for entrepreneurs can help you solve problems. But can reading make you more money?

While some people see reading as a relaxed pastime, reflecting on what you’ve read could be the answer to boosting profits.

Business Books Offer Actionable Techniques & Strategies

By reading more books, you’ll discover new ideas and unique business strategies.  Applying this to your career will help you to scale and drive your business forward. 

Reading a single business book will give you a one-sided view. But every new book you read will provide compound knowledge. From here, you will develop your own perspective on what works and what doesn’t. Why waste time making mistakes when someone has already made the mistakes for you to learn from?

Have a pen and paper close by when reading: Write down snippets of inspiration or actionable techniques to test out in your own business. 

Even if you don’t manage to finish every business book you read, try to leave every book with one good idea or action.

Your Subconscious Mind Stays Focused On Goals

Heading home from the office to read business books keeps you focused on your end goals. 

It’s nice to switch off sometimes. But falling into a habit of watching 3 to 4 hours of TV every day, is wasting valuable learning time. 

A good reading habit keeps your mind focussed – even when you’re not reading. You’ll find yourself thinking of new ideas and techniques while working on other things. 

With your brain subconsciously thinking about your business, your next big idea could come to you quicker than you expect. 

Boosted Vocabulary = Better Communication

Reading is great for boosting your vocabulary. The more you read, the better you’ll be at articulating your beliefs and inspiring your team.

Your Memory Stays Sharp 

Reading consistently throughout life can reduce memory decline by over 30%

A good memory will boost your networking skills, keep you organized and help you to take in more information. Ths can only ever be good for business.

Cultivates The Theory of Mind

The theory of mind is the ability to understand emotions and accept that others have beliefs and ideas that may differ from yours. It can help you create business strategies that tap into the mind of your audience to drive more profits. 

You don’t always have to be reading business books, either. Fiction helps you understand other people’s mental states -which is incredibly useful for building relationships

How To Incorporate Reading Business Books Into Your Routine

Creating a new habit is hard. Especially one that could take a lot of time out of your day. To make reading business books part of your routine, here are our tips: 

  • Utilize small pockets of time. You have much more free time than you think. Small pockets of time – like while eating breakfast or commuting to work – are great opportunities to read a few pages.  
  • Limit your scroll time. People spend an average of 147 minutes a day on social media. That’s 16 hours a week. Finding out what friends have been up to on their holidays doesn’t propel your business forward. Learning about the latest trends in your industry? Now that’s worth your time.
  • Be realistic. Don’t dive in with a list of 100 business books you want to read. Instead, create a realistic reading plan and see how far you get. Don’t overwhelm yourself with lists or targets. Read at your own pace, and you’ll find you become quicker. 
  • Start with people you know. If you type ‘best books for entrepreneurs’ into Google every list will be completely different. Start with authors or business owners that inspire you. Then, read content from the people that inspired them.
  • Create a library. Many business books are for reference, rather than reading front to back. Create a small library of books close to your workspace. This works as a great visual reminder to read while also helping you to get out of a rut when needed. You can also use sticky notes to keep track of the best lessons or inspirational parts for quick referencing.

The Best Business Books For Entrepreneurs: FAQs

What Kind Of Books Should Entrepreneurs Read?

Entrepreneurs should read a mixture of business books and fictional work. Both types of content develop critical thinking, empathy, and problem-solving skills. Read our article to find 3 must-read books for entrepreneurs. 

Is It Worth Reading Business Books? 

Absolutely! By reading business books you can bypass all the mistakes and problems other business owners have experienced. You can learn from their mistakes and scale your business much more quicker.

What Are The Three Major Skills Entrepreneurs Need?

Three major skills entrepreneurs need are adaptability, persistence, and hard work. Because nothing is plain sailing in business. To succeed, you need to adapt in the face of obstacles and challenges. You need to persist when things get tough and not be afraid to put in the hard work. This is the difference between entrepreneurs that succeed and those that don’t.

Wrapping Up: Make Reading Business Books Your Priority

By now you’ve realized that reading business books is essential to expand your mind, skills, and capacity to develop a successful business. 


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