Taking some time off this summer? Here’s a list of the best books I’ve consumed over the years – and those which I’ve recommended most to my clients.
- Shoe Dog by Phil Knight
Shoe Dog is an inspirational story of overcoming challenges to grow a company as fast as possible. You’ll learn real-world business lessons that only Nike’s founder can teach you. Phil Knight is brutally honest about the extreme difficulties they had to overcome.
- The Five Dysfunctions of a Team by Patrick Lencioni
The Five Dysfunctions of a Team describes the many pitfalls that teams face as they seek to “grow together”. It explores the fundamental causes of organizational politics and team failure – and gives practical guidance on how to overcome this.
- The Hard Thing About Hard Things by Ben Horowitz
You’ve likely heard of this one! Ben Horowitz is one of Silicon Valley’s most respected and experienced entrepreneurs.
In The Hard Thing About Hard Things, he offers essential advice on building and running a start-up, and provides practical wisdom for managing the toughest problems business schools don’t cover. This book has a bit of a cult following, and I can attest that it lives up to the hype!
- Unleashing Greatness by David Galbraith
The back cover of Unleashing Greatness is a perfect description of this book; “Everyone is capable of greatness … sadly, not everybody finds it. Many people’s lives are ripped apart by self-doubt and destroyed by fear of failing. This results in never fully unleashing their true selves and always settling for second best in the job they apply for, the course of study they pursue, the person they ask out to coffee or to marry them! What makes it worse is that deep down they know they are capable of so much more … and it tears them apart inside!”
If you are tired of settling for second best or want to achieve the greatness you know is just there in front of you, then this book is for you! It’s all about finding courage.
- New Sales Simplified by Mike Weinberg
This is the sort of book that business owners should be reading and taking notes from. It draws a clear distinction between sales to new customers, and sales to existing accounts – and focuses entirely on mastering the former.
- Resilient Grieving by Dr Lucy Hone
This may sound like an odd pick, but this book really took me by surprise. Resilient Grieving is a practical, research-based guide to finding your own path to recovery from devastating loss – whether it’s to do with your business or something in your personal life. Though any business owner I speak to tells me it’s hard to distinguish between the two.
This is a practical guide to rebuilding your resilience, and this is so applicable to all areas of your life, particularly in these challenging times.
- Traction by Gino Wickman
Traction offers a helping hand for beginning entrepreneurs and others whose businesses are stuck at a point where hard work and determination are no longer enough for them to survive and grow.
Business owner and consultant Gino Wickman explains how to structure your business to remove typical frustrations, so it regains momentum, it runs seamlessly, and you don’t get mired in details. Based on practical experience, not theory, it leads business owners step by step through processes to create a structure and core focus that strengthen and re-energize their organizations.
Take some time to relax this holiday period and bury yourself in a book. Happy reading!