31 Books For Entrepreneurs To Read This Holiday Season

One of my favorite things about our interviews is that every single interview is just about completely different. I learn something new from just about interview we do, which is incredible since I’ve conducted and read upwards of a 1,000. One of my goals is to do a better job of curating the content and data that comes through our doors. It’s just not feasible to expect anyone to go through and read 1,200 interviews to figure out what the best way to do something is. We’ve got some big projects in the works to really provide some value to you.

One of the questions we always ask is about a book that people would recommend to us.The holidays are quickly approaching, so my hope is that you’ll have some time to read and recuperate. Anyhow, I scanned through the last 35 interviews to put together a quick list for you, with the hope that we’d have a few recommendations in there that might surprise – books you never heard about. Books that have provided incredible value for other entrepreneurs like you.

Out of 35, I got 31 different book recommendations. Some of these books I’ve read before, others were just added to my reading list.

Here are 31 Books For Entrepreneurs to read this holiday season. Maybe not all of them, but do pick one or two.


Good To Great

Probably Good to Great. It’s now about ten years since it was printed, so the company references aren’t always perfect, but I love reading about great visionary companies and how different they are run compared with what you would be led to believe through the business media. – Nick Blitterswyk 

Think and Grow Rich

I recommend reading Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill. Principles suggested in this book are those of successful individuals and if you adopt these principles you are sure to see an increase of success in your own life. – Derrik Parks 

The Lean Startup

It may not be original but The Lean Startup. It’s a constant reminder that you aren’t nearly as smart as you want to think you are. -Mike Newman

10,000 Things to Be Happy About

10,000 Things to Be Happy About. I read it in my teens but continue to open it quite often. When times are tough it helps you to see that it’s the little things in life that bring you joy and often helps clear the funk. -Melissa Pia Bossola Beese 

New Earth and Rich Dad, Poor Dad

On a personal level New Earth by Eckhart Tolle. On a business level Rich Dad, Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki. They both give a unique prospective on life and business. I have always found perspective to be very valuable. -John Heacock

The Owner’s Manual for The Brain

My real recommendation would be: don’t read books, chances are you’re wasting your time. If I have to give a book I would say, “The Owner’s Manual for The Brain” because I feel better understanding how your brain works can only improve how you use it. -Yo Sub Kwon

Atlas Shrugged

Atlas Shrugged. Ayn Rand may have written this for women’s rights but it certainly speaks to every entrepreneur. -Thomas Eide

Six Simple Rules for a Better Life

Six Simple Rules for a Better Life by David J. Singer offers really great and practical tips on how to get out of your own way, so you can live your life to the fullest. It’s not filled with the same old self-help adages but rather gives you practical and attainable steps on how to make the most out of your life. -Alicia Arinella

Abundance: The Future is better than you think

Abundance: The Future Is Better than You Think,” by Peter H. Diamandis and Steven Kotler. Given today’s remarkable technological and scientific breakthroughs, the world is in better shape than you might think. Medical doctor Peter H. Diamandis and journalist Steven Kotler insist that nothing is wrong that people can’t fix. They argue that society stands poised to solve its most fundamental problems – famine, disease, and energy depletion – in the coming decades. -Michel Koopman

Who Moved My Cheese

Who Moved My Cheese by Spencer Johnson. It is one of my favorite books! The message is profound, especially to entrepreneurs and it’s also a very easy read. -Kristi Taylor


E-myth, It explains how a business should be structured. It would be great to read and understand this before you have too many moving parts in your business. This book breaks it down and makes it clear on how to build your business. -Eskat Asfaw

The Last Lecture

The Last Lecture by Randy Pausch. It’s an amazing book about a Carnegie Mellon professor who was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. It includes stories of his childhood, lessons he wants his children to learn, and things he wants his children to know about him. He repeatedly stresses that people should have fun in everything they do, and live life to its fullest because one never knows when it might be taken. It’s definitely a book that puts your life in perspective. -Jessica Ekstrom

The Leader Who Had No Title

The Leader Who Had No Title by Robin Sharma because it is a thought-provoking book about how you are doing as a leader (everyone is) and inspires the reader to embrace positive change. -Nora Whalen

The Dress Maker of Khair Khana

The Dress Maker of Khair Khana – I believe that women in the west have a responsibility to help bring liberty to women in less privileged areas of the world. Fashion is one industry that all women relate to, even in the Middle East. This book taught me about the positive impact that fashion can bring the world. -Amanda Curtis

Inc Your Dreams

Inc. Your Dreams by Rebecca Maddox. This book motivates readers to build their businesses and their careers around their own values and what they love to do, and to formulate personal definitions of success. This book helps you examine your experiences, resources, relationships, feelings about money, physical being, and spiritual beliefs – with the ultimate goal of creating a customized action plan for success in business and life-work balance. Inc. Your Dreams offers a practical and inspiring approach for individuals who aspire to business ownership as well as for those reassessing their current business. -Sarah Remington and Veronica Zanellato Kido


Psycho-Cybernetics by Dr Maxwell Maltz. It sounds much more academic than it is, so dont let the title scare you off. It’s a very interesting and fun read about why we do the things we do and why we sometimes let that ego get in the way. -Dawson McKay

The Clock of the Long Now

The Clock of the Long Now by Stewart Brand. It shows us that as important as being here now is, it is also important to think long term as in 50 years, one hundred years etc. The people involved in this endeavor are quietly building a repository of all of the knowledge ever discovered. A very cool idea. -David Gross

Steve Jobs

Steve Jobs, the biography by Walter Isaacson, was a great read. I am a student of business and really enjoyed learning how Steve Jobs executed his vision, strategy and love for negotiation. I think other entrepreneurs would get a kick out of Jobs’ interactions with employees, and the stories they shared about him. -Ron Gonzalez

The Tao of Pooh

The Tao of Pooh. Some of it is nonsense, but there is a lot of real wisdom in that book. -David Palmer

How to Win Friends and Influence People

I have lots of recommendations when it comes to books, but the one that had the greatest impact for me was Dale Carnegie’s How to Win Friends and Influence People. Despite that it was written 70 years ago, the advice for managing people and their expectations is aspirational gold. -Paul Kenyon


Cradle to Cradle

Cradle to Cradle – Remaking the Way We Make Things by William McDonough and Michael Braungart. Hugely inspiring and filled with incredible information that everyone should know. It changed the way I understood design. -Lauren Gropper

The Emyth and Talent is Overrated

I recommend reading The eMyth and Talent is Overrated. –Ben Rubenstein

A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius

A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius by David Eggers. Because it’s just ridiculously brilliant. -John Brownlee

Diffusion of Innovations

I’d recommend everyone read Diffusion of Innovations by Everett M. Rogers. It’s a blueprint for taking your new idea and making sure it finds a home. -Andrew Marshall

The Art of the Start

The Art of the Start – Great insights by Guy Kawasaki, who speaks plainly and clearly to help get you going (both with inspiration and practical details). -Javier Colayco

48 Laws of Power

48 Laws of Power by Robert Greene. I love history and quotes. The book explains different principles of success in 48 small separate chapters, and how leaders and powerful individuals throughout history have applied them. -Robert Niznik

Banker to the Poor

Anything by Muhammad Yunus – reading his books, especially Banker to the Poor, was a turning point in my career, and helped me learn the power and practicality of pivoting verynice to become a for-profit social enterprise as opposed to a non-profit organization. I loved the idea that I could adopt a model that would allow me to have just as much impact while remaining self-sufficient as opposed to seeing help from the government and / or donors. -Matthew Manos

It’s Your Ship

It’s Your Ship. This was the book my father was reading when he passed away and it teaches the power of passion, ownership, commitment to greatness and delegation. It has great entrepreneurship lessons told in a creative way. The Last Lecture is also a great book. -John Berkowitz


Goals by Brian Tracy. It’s good to self-assess to see if your goals are realistic. -Greg Cummins

The New Rules of Marketing and PR

The New Rules of Marketing and PR: How to Use News Releases, Blogs, Podcasting, Viral Marketing and Online Media to Reach Buyers Directly. This book spells out clearly and completely what you need to do to market your business. -Dana Humphrey

You Are Not So Smart

You Are Not So Smart, by David McRaney. Although more classified as a psychology book, I highly recommend this book to entrepreneurs and business owners because it provides entertaining and down-to-earth information on why people say, think and act the way they do. In order to build a company around a product that people want to buy and use, it is important to understand people and what drives them. This book highlights all the reasons why people can’t accurately define reasons for their actions even though they think they can. -Sarah Young

What books for entrepreneurs are you looking to read this holiday season?

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