It’s always important to learn from others, and one of the easiest ways to do that is to read books that tell inspiring stories. Good books can teach you a lot about both business and life and inspire you to overcome obstacles and be the best possible version of yourself.
However, there are so many books out there that sometimes it can be hard to figure out where to start! Since summer is a great time to breeze through a book while lying on the beach or the pool, why not use that time to read something that can help you improve your business or take that next step in life or in your career?
Here are some great books that will inspire you, encourage you, and open your mind to entirely new possibilities!
1. Leapfrog: The New Revolution for Women Entrepreneurs by Natalie Molina Niño and Sara Grace
Leapfrog is a must-read for women entrepreneurs who need more than the same old advice on how to grow their business. and serial entrepreneur Nathalie Molina Niño goes beyond conventional thinking and offers practical steps to outsmart and overcome the common obstacles that so many women entrepreneurs face in their careers. I love this book because it’s based on real-world experience and all of Molina Niño’s tactical guidelines actually work in real life.
This book also holds a special place in my collection for a few other reasons. Like me, Molina Niño is a daughter of immigrants from Ecuador. Like me, she launched her first tech startup in her early twenties and became the CEO of a successful company. And, I actually had the honor to be featured in Chapter 49 of Leapfrog, where I shared some of my own business advice with budding women entrepreneurs.
2. The Go-Giver by Bob Burg and John David Mann
The Go-Giver is a quick but powerful read from Hall of Fame speaker and business thought leader Bob Burg and award-winning author John David Mann. A true page-turner, the booktells a story about a business owner who struggles to make his sales targets each quarter until he meets a mentor. Besides having a captivating storyline, the authors offer brilliant life and business advice.
Burg and Mann share with their readers that the secret to success lies in giving. And based on my own professional experience, I can absolutely attest to their message. The more we all focus on helping others succeed in life, the more life gives us in return. I’d recommend this book to both young and experienced entrepreneurs who want to gain a deeper motivation for achieving success in business.
3. Brave, Not Perfect by Reshma Saujani
In her international bestseller Brave, Not Perfect, Reshma Saujani empowers her audience to fully embrace their imperfections and live their lives without the fear of not being good enough. I have a deep connection with Saujani’s personal story of pursuing her goals despite the advice from some of her friends who didn’t think she could succeed. As I always say, “Don’t beat yourself up. Someone else will gladly do that for you!”
Saujani is a fellow woman entrepreneur whom I admire greatly. She founded Girls Who Code, a nonprofit that works to close the gender gap throughout the technology industry for women of all ages. I truly enjoyed reading her book, as it encourages women to Fear Less, Fail More, and Live Bolder!
4. Delivering Happiness: A Path to Profits, Passion, and Purpose by Tony Hsieh
Delivering Happiness is another one of my favorite books that inspires entrepreneurial greatness. It dives into the success story of online shoe retail brand Zappos, and how its CEO Tony Hsieh built his business on the premise of company culture — something I live and breathe at my own company. Customer service and corporate culture are a major focus of this book, which Hsieh masterfully uses to redefine our way of thinking about running a business.
One point that particularly stood out to me was how Hsieh extended his company’s goal of delivering happiness not only to customers, but even to their suppliers, a group that is often overlooked, but critical to a business’s success. Overall, I really enjoyed learning about the history and culture of Zappos as it reminds me of our own approach to company culture at Pinnacle Group. This book is a must-read for anyone who is interested in running their own business.
5. Originals: How Non-Conformists Move the World by Adam Grant
Named as one of the world’s 10 Most Influential Management Thinkers, Adam Grant uses a series of real-life stories from the realms of business, politics, sports, and entertainmenttopaint vivid pictures of how to achieve innovative success while making a greater positive impact on the world. This book can teach you how to manage your fear, build allies, recognize a good idea, and most importantly, speak up without being silenced.
I really like this book because its message inspires you to think differently, nurture your creativity, and take the path less traveled. If you’re an entrepreneur who wants to start an efficient and well-cultured business, I highly recommend you take the time to dive into this read.
All of these books impart powerful messages and lessons that have helped me in both my personal and professional lives. I hope they also inspire you to push past your internal fears, seek new solutions to whatever obstacles come your way, and make a positive difference — be it in your family, community, country or the world.
What books have inspired you lately? Please share your thoughts in the comments below!