While some of us may prefer some mindless (but well written) fiction, others may use the time to catch up on some books to help you grow your business.
I’ve never been a huge reader of business books, however there have been a few that I’ve read, reread and referred to over and over again.
Here they are:
The E Myth Revisited by Michael Gerber. If you’ve ever heard the phrase “work on your business, not in it” this is where it came from. Michael Gerber believes in making your business franchiseable, meaning not that you’re going to be the next Starbucks (but you could), but that the more you build a company to be able to stand on its own two feet, the better chance of success you’ll have. This is critical for any number of reasons, ranging from wanting to take a vacation to being able to successfully sell and transition out. A couple of small caveats: Read the book, he’s a decent writer but a horrible speaker. I’m not sure if they’re still doing an auxiliary training program, which I did a long time ago. It does help you focus on some aspects of your business, but in the long run was expensive and time consuming.
The Success Principles by James Canfield. This is about taking control and responsibility for your life. It’s a big book and there’s a lot of tough love in it, but there’s a lot of really good advice to help you get and stay on track. You’ll come back to it over and over again when you hit a rut and just need that kick in the pants. I’m not sure how it would be on an audio book, but let me know if you try it in the comments below.
The Art of the Start 2.0 by Guy Kawasaki. I read his original book, The Art of the Start and it remains one of the great start-up handbooks. If all you get out of it is his genius 10/20/30 rule for PowerPoint presentations, you’ll have done yourself and the world a great service. As soon as I’m done posting this, I’m ordering the 2.0 version.
StrengthsFinder 2.0 by Gallup. This is an upgraded version of Discover Your Strengths. It’s a self-assessment tool to help you realize what you’re good at. It’s really helpful in getting you to build on those strengths and when you’re getting ready to hire, giving you the knowledge to hire people who will have strengths in areas you’d be happy to give up.
Good to Great by Jim Collins. This is a very detailed study of how companies can achieve greatness and sustain it over time. Some of it is pretty dry, but it’s an interesting look at how businesses have risen to become the corporations they are now.