Put these Business Books on Your Worth Reading List

When you're running your own business it's always important to keep up your own training and development program and for many of us, that's partly done with reading business books.

I always have a pile of business books stacked up waiting to be read so I decided to start a reading program where I'm finishing a business book every month. So far this has been a bit ambitious but it has focused me on setting aside time to read a chapter or two at a time.

So with time so precious for business owners it's really important to find the right books to read - finding business books that are worth reading.

The importance of reading business books, to me, is all around developing skills, learning from others and having some help in finding my own path in business.

For instance, I want to find out what's involved in having apps for She Inspires so I've started with reading books on how to create successful app businesses that are written by those already doing it. I expect each book to have a range of angels, to discover the common themes and to learn the different experiences and recommendations each business owner author has to share.

I find learning from other business owners about how they have grown their businesses, their mistakes and their successes to be really valuable.  I hope you enjoy this list of worthwhile business books to read and you share with us on Facebook and Twitter your book recommendations. Where possible I've linked to the books online for you.

Business Books Worth Reading

App Empire

Make Money, Have a Life, and Let Technology Work for You

By: Chad Mureta RRP $31.95

A guide to building wealth by designing, creating, and marketing a successful app across any platform.

Chad Mureta has made millions starting and running his own successful app business, and now he explains how you can do it, too, in this non-technical, easy-to-follow guide. App Empire provides the confidence and the tools necessary for taking the next step towards financial success and freedom. The book caters to many platforms including iPhone, iPad, Android, and BlackBerry.

This book includes real-world examples to inspire those who are looking to cash in on the App gold rush. Learn how to set up your business so that it works while you don't, and turn a simple idea into a passive revenue stream.

  • Discover marketing strategies that few developers know and/or use
  • Learn the success formula for getting thousands of downloads a day for one App
  • Learn the secret to why some Apps get visibility while others don't
  • Get insights to help you understand the App store market

App Empire delivers advice on the most essential things you must do in order to achieve success with an app. Turn your simple app idea into cash flow today!

Ed Note: This was the first app building book I read to get an overview of what's involved. I think I made a great first choice with this and recommend it to anyone wanting to start with a big picture so they can start their planning, start building their knowledge and understanding of what's involved in creating a successful app business.

About the Author

Chad Mureta is the founder of Empire Apps, and cofounder of T3 Apps and Best Apps, mobile application businesses that he created without a background in technology.

Within two years and while traveling all over the world, he spearheaded the development and marketing of forty-six apps, which were downloaded over 35 million times worldwide. As an author, speaker, consultant, and entrepreneur, Mureta's unique insight, experience, and tenacity have enabled him to make his businesses thrive, all while in his twenties.

Business Model Generation

A Handbook for Visionaries, Game Changers, and Challengers : 1st Edition

By: Alexander Osterwalder, Yves Peigner RRP $44.95

"Business Model Generation" is a handbook for visionaries, game changers, and challengers striving to defy outmoded business models and design tomorrow's enterprises. If your organization needs to adapt to harsh new realities, but you don't yet have a strategy that will get you out in front of your competitors, you need "Business Model Generation."

Co-created by 470 "Business Model Canvas" practitioners from 45 countries, the book features a beautiful, highly visual, 4-color design that takes powerful strategic ideas and tools, and makes them easy to implement in your organization. It explains the most common Business Model patterns, based on concepts from leading business thinkers, and helps you reinterpret them for your own context. You will learn how to systematically understand, design, and implement a game-changing business model--or analyze and renovate an old one. Along the way, you'll understand at a much deeper level your customers, distribution channels, partners, revenue streams, costs, and your core value proposition.

"Business Model Generation" features practical innovation techniques used today by leading consultants and companies worldwide, including 3M, Ericsson, Capgemini, Deloitte, and others. Designed for doers, it is for those ready to abandon outmoded thinking and embrace new models of value creation: for executives, consultants, entrepreneurs, and leaders of all organizations. If you're ready to change the rules, you belong to "the business model generation "

Ed Note: This book grabbed my attention on a range of levels that meant I had to buy it there and then. It was initially independently published and subsequently picked up by a major publisher due to it's proven popularity. It looks at the high level structural options available for building (or rebuilding) a business so you can craft a business model structure that reflects where you want your organisation to be. While it does have a bias towards corporations rather than the realities of small businesses, I still found it deeply valuable (and still wonder what extra benefit I could get from an edition purposely focused on the SME).

I'd recommend this book for any business owner looking for a practical working tool to help focus on the big picture rather than getting bogged down in the narrow views daily working life and create.

Business NLP For Dummies

By: Lynne Cooper RRP $33.95

Achieve business success with Neuro-linguistic Programming

People around the globe use NLP to improve their communication skills, build rapport, make positive changes, and accomplish their goals. When used in a business context, NLP techniques can transform both your own and your team’s performances. This practical guide to NLP at work will help you increase your flexibility, become more influential, and achieve professional success, whatever your career.

- Use NLP techniques in the workplace – overcome barriers to success and develop a winning mindset

- Build effective working relationships – improve your communication skills and create rapport with your colleagues

- Lead people to perform – enhance your ability to inspire peak performance

- Make changes that drive success – set and achieve ambitious goals

Ed Note: I've realised that so many of the business people I respect are working from a NLP skills basis. So I decided to explore it further and started with this introductory book. Again, I would have loved a book written specifically for the small business owner and I was at the time looking for an NLP for Sales Skills book but this is what I found easily available in my hunts and I'm glad I did. There are lots of valuable skills and insights shared as well as practical examples.

I find the NLP goal setting and achieving approach really valuable because it is practical and structured. I think this is extremely useful for any business owner wanting to grow her business.

Making a Living in Crafts

Everything You Need to Know to Build Your Business

By Donald Clark RRP $34.95

Artisans who want to turn their passion into profit need look no further: with a combination of inspiration and practical knowledge--plus hundreds of images--this comprehensive guide offers the most solid and current information on the crafting business.

It goes way beyond just the crafts show: everything is covered, from developing a product to drafting a business plan, from marketing to exhibiting in galleries. There are numerous interviews with prominent people throughout the industry, along with a discussion of craft economy as a whole and the challenges you might face along the way.

Learn how to efficiently design your product, set up a studio, hire employees, and set prices. Crafters will appreciate the encouraging message on keeping one's creative spirit alive.

Ed Note: When I started my handcrafted jewellery business I was coming from the corporate world and knew I didn't know so many things. So I started soaking up books about how to create a successful creative business.

What I love about this book is the range of topics it covers, the interviews and the practical insights. So many creative and craft people struggle to make a living from what they make so to be different, to make it work, it takes a different approach and that's what this book is ideal for.

The E-Myth Revisited

Why Most Small Businesses Don't Work and What to Do About It

By: Michael E. Gerber RRP $24.99

In this first new and totally revised edition of the 150,000-copy underground bestseller, The E-Myth, Michael Gerber dispels the myths surrounding starting your own business and shows how commonplace assumptions can get in the way of running a business.

He walks you through the steps in the life of a business from entrepreneurial infancy, through adolescent growing pains, to the mature entrepreneurial perspective, the guiding light of all businesses that succeed. He then shows how to apply the lessons of franchising to any business whether or not it is a franchise.

Finally, Gerber draws the vital, often overlooked distinction between working on your business and working in your business.

After you have read The E-Myth Revisited, you will truly be able to grow your business in a predictable and productive way.

Ed Note: This was one of my first business books I read when I decided in 2001 to have my own business and I'm so glad I took the time to read it. 
The E-Myth got me thinking in terms of systems, of how they need to work for us rather than us work for them. It got me thinking about how I would want customers experiencing the business and how they would talk about it to others. I think every business owner who wants to grow a business should read this book.

Emotional Intelligence

Why It Can Matter More Than IQ

By: Daniel Goleman RRP $24.95

Daniel Goleman offers a vital new curriculum for life that can change the future for us and for our children

Is IQ destiny? Not nearly as much as we think. Daniel Goleman's fascinating and persuasive book argues that our view of human intelligence is far too narrow, and that our emotions play a much greater role in thought, decision making and individual success than is commonly acknowledged.

Drawing on groundbreaking brain and behavioural research, Goleman shows the factors at work when people of high IQ flounder and those of modest IQ do surprisingly well. These factors add up to a different way of succeeding in life - one he terms 'emotional intelligence'.

Emotional intelligence includes self-awareness and impulse control, persistence zeal and self-motivation, empathy and social deftness. These are the qualities that mark people who excel: whose intimate relationships flourish, who are stars in the workplace. These are also the hallmarks of character and self-discipline, of altruism and compassion.

As Goleman demonstrates, the personal costs of deficits in emotional intelligence can range from problems in marriage and parenting to poor physical health in adults, and to eating disorders and depression in children. (New research shows that chronic anger and anxiety create as great a health risk as chain-smoking.) But the news is hopeful. Emotional intelligence is not fixed at birth.

Goleman's argument gives new insights into the brain architecture underlying emotion and rationality. He shows precisely how emotional intelligence can be nurtured and strengthened in all of us. And because the emotional lessons a child learns actually sculpt the brain's circuitry, Goleman provides detailed guidance as to how parents and schools can benefit from this. The message of this eye-opening book is one we must take to heart.

Ed Note: I first read Emotional Intelligence when I was in the corporate world and it applied just as much then as it does now when I have my own businesses. While there are a string of subsequent themed books I think this is a great starting point. By developing strong skills in EQ you can have a much happier and successful life - in all areas.

About the Author

Daniel Goleman, PhD, covers the behavioural and brain sciences for The New York Times and his articles appear throughout the world in syndication. He has taught at Harvard, where he received his PhD, and was formerly senior editor of Psychology Today. His previous books include: Vital Times, Simple Truths and The Meditative Mind


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