In my recent post I shared The Shocking and Most Important Skill every entrepreneurs Need To be Successful.
To go ahead in life, farther than your mates and peers, you have to read more than anybody does. Reading should not be something you do once in a year or six months. Or worst still, once in 10 years. It should be a daily routine, more like a lifestyle or attitude.
Ok stopping fanning yourself already.
I’m not talking about text books. The practical application of most of the textbooks in school ends in the classroom. If at all they are applicable to real life situations.
I fear for those people who say that they can’t read books other than their textbooks. Look at the lives of those people. They are usually naive and narrow-minded. They never think out of the box.
I can categorically tell you that reading books has made me even more intelligent and open-minded than many so-called graduates roaming the street looking for a (non-existent) white-collar job.
The importance of reading books can not be over-emphasized. It has changed my life, thoughts and perception about everything. I think differently from most of my friends. They are usually amazed at my smartness. The truth is: the books I’ve read made me smarter.
As a young entrepreneur (especially in Nigeria), starting a business may be scary and also overwhelming. There are many questions to ask. So many things seems unclear.
It doesn’t have to be that way. Start by picking up one of these books that I’m about to recommend and start reading ASAP.
The list provides books that will give you basic knowledge about being an entrepreneur but also share advice on what happens while on the road to entrepreneurial success.
These books are available in hardcovers or Ebooks. If you’re a 21st century guy like me, your best option would be Ebooks. Any which way just make sure you’re reading.
1. How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie
This book is guaranteed to change your life forever. Just as it changed mine. No wonder when I lent it to a lady she never returned it till today. It’s 5 years now and I’m counting. If you see her please tell her to return my treasure (grabs napkin to wipe tears……#BringBackOurBook…lol…pun intended).
With this book you can overcome competition and simply win people over to your team, even without them knowing. This book will also be great for business owners and companies who care about excellent customer service. Every young entrepreneur must read this book at least once a year, it’s a business classic!
2. The Psychology of Selling by Brian Tracy
Ok this one is coming from the King of Sales himself. It is of a truth that whatever business we are all into we are selling something to somebody.Having a great product doesn’t do anything if you don’t know how to approach the person and make them fall in love with you and the product. This book by Brian Tracy gives you valuable information and strategies about how to make more selling by focusing on one thing – the person.
3. Rich Dad, Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki and Sharon Lechter
Personally, i think this is the best financial intelligence book of all time. I strongly recommend this book for every entrepreneur alive. You must be an alien from Jupiter if you’ve never heard of this book or read it. Robert Kiyosaki’s book breaks down everything you need to know about financial education without giving you a headache. He teaches you how to make your entrepreneurial dreams come true by giving you the cold, hard truth about wealth – it’s not found by going to school, getting good grades, graduating with a diploma, and working for a secure company.
4. Thinking, Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman
Daniel Kahneman goes over the two systems found in our mind, that can make or break our ability to move forward and succeed in life, in his book Thinking, Fast and Slow. He talks about the fast and emotional system, and the slow, more logical system that makes up our whole mind.
5. The 4-Hour Workweek by Timothy Ferriss
Who hasn’t heard of Timothy Ferriss? His name has been everywhere since he launched in his book, The 4-Hour Workweek. Nowadays, everyone is looking for that easy fix, and becoming an entrepreneur is all about enjoying the wonders of life without having to work 40 hours a week. Timothy knows that and therefore puts you in the right mindset to start building a business that will allow you to work not 20, not 10, but 4 hours a week and still build a fortune.
6. The E-Myth Revisited by Michael E. Gerber
Michael E. Gerber is an unconventional entrepreneur with hard and cold truth. Reading his book, “The Entrepreneurial Dream” changed my life.
There are many misconceptions out there about starting your business and being a successful entrepreneur, and it’s only natural to become a little confused as the contradicting information is thrown at you from all directions. Michael E. Gerber breaks down each myth and walks you through the real life steps of having a business and becoming successful as an entrepreneur in today’s era. He wants to make sure that you know the difference between working on your business and working in your business.
7. Crush It! by Gary Vaynerchuk
Gary takes a very motivating and persuasive voice in his book Crush It! by motivating you to move on your passions. In his book, he goes other the many reasons why you should stop sitting on your couch dreaming about the day you will get paid to do what you love. He wants you to get out of your comfort zone and create a happy and passionate life for yourself.
8. The Art of Non-Conformity by Chris Gillebeau
Have you heard of “monkey see, monkey do”? (a Nigerian proverb). This book will be a great read for all the copy cats who can’t stick to their own business model but want to follow every advise under the sun.
This book is perfect for all young entrepreneurs looking to break away from the crowd and face entrepreneurship head first. It’s time to stop believing the assumptions we were told about life and start living life differently.
9. The Entrepreneur Mind by Kevin D. Johnson
Everything starts in the mind. If you have negative thoughts all day, it’s pretty certain that your day will not end on a good note. Kevin D. Johnson knows that and wants to help entrepreneurs around the world to change their mindset in order to be successful. In his book, The Entrepreneur Mind, Kevin D. Johnson talks about the different ways to change your way of thinking in order to start a business, make it grow, and make it last.
10. The Hard Thing About Hard Things by Ben Horowitz
There are many things that school doesn’t teach us, and Ben Horowitz wants those things to be out in the open for entrepreneurs. His book, The Hard Thing About Hard Things, gives advice on how to build and run a startup in the real world. He will give you advice on things that school just doesn’t seem to go over, like how to analyze problems and find solutions, or how difficult running a business actually is.
11. Rework by Jason Fried, David Hansson
This book will motivate you to get up on your feet and move forward without planning the steps on a piece of paper before. This is for the go-getters who prefer to learn by doing!
12. Eat That Frog!by Brian Tracy
21 ways to stop procrastinating and get things done in less time. For people who are overwhelmed by tasks of all sizes, this book provides the 21 most effective methods for conquering procrastination and accomplishing more.
13. The 48 Laws of Power by Robert Greene –
A primer for those who desperately want to reach the top.
14. The Charisma Myth by Olivia Fox Cabane –
Master the art and science of personal magnetism.
15. Personal Development for Smart Peopleby Steve Pavlina –
The “how to” for learning a meaningful life.
16. The Magic of Thinking Bigby David J. Schwartz –
Acquire the secrets of success, and achieve everything you have always wanted.
17. No More Mr. Nice Guyby Robert A. Glover –
Stop seeking approval and start getting on with your life.
18. The Power of Habitby Charles Duhigg
Learn why habits exist and how to go about changing them.
19. Simplifyby Joshua Becker
Principles to help anyone declutter their home and life.
20. People Skills by Robert Bolton
How to assert yourself, listen to others, and resolve conflicts.
21. 6 Pillars of Self Esteemby Nathaniel Branden
The definitive guide for self-esteem.
22. The Law of Successby Napoleon Hill
Learn what gives certain people the edge over others.
23. The Art of Learningby Josh Waitzkin
Learn how to learn things efficiently and effectively.
24. 59 Seconds by Richard Wiseman
Change your life in under a minute.
25. Mind Gym by Sebastian Bailey and Octavius Black
Achieve more by thinking differently.
26. Starting Strength by Mark Rippetoe
Maybe not be a self-help book in the classical sense, but working out will drastically improve your self esteem, health, and life.
27. The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey
Seven Habits is a classic book about leadership and success. “Win-Win” habit, says that one of your first priorities as an entrepreneur should be to create a product or service that benefits your customer, and then worry about the rest.
28.Creative Confidence by Tom and David Kelly
This book will help you unlock your inner creativity, even if you think it’s an area where you’re lacking. A must-read for entrepreneurs.
29. To Sell Is Human by Daniel Pink
Even if you don’t consider yourself a “sales person”, all entrepreneurs need to understand how to sell. This book breaks down the stigmas about salesmanship and shows you a simple strategy for “moving others.” It’s a fantastic read.
30. Guide To Investing (What The Rich Invest In That The Poor and Middle Class Do Not) by Robert Kiyosaki and Sharon L. Lechter
I try to read this book at least once in a year. The lessons there are timeless. This book is a must-read for anyone who wants to become a rich investor and invest in what the rich invest in.
Should you run to the book shop now and buy all 30 books and start reading? I don’t think so. I’ll advice that you pick the one that interests you most or the one that resonates with what you’re passing through now in life or business and read.
There are other thousands of book out there but this is my recommendation. Don’t just stop here.Go out and search for more.
If you aspire to join the ranks of rich entrepreneurs in Africa or Nigeria, reading is an invaluable skill. Books lead us into new ways of thinking and reasoning, help us push through the tough times, and teach us how to become successful business entrepreneurs.
Note: Some books may not be readily available in its physical form in Nigeria. You can purchase them online from Amazon.
Share with us in the comment box below. Which of these books have you read or plan on reading. I’m excited to hear your opinion.
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