In this video I cover the top 10 books I believe that every entrepreneur should read, and why.
The number 10 book on my list is The 33 Strategies of War by Robert Greene. And I’ll tell you why. Some people ask, “Why do you talk about war? What does this have to do with entrepreneurship?
Think about running a business, as running a small tribe. When you’re an entrepreneur, you are running a very, very small country. And every direct competitor of yours has the goal of putting you out of business.
So you’ve got to have a mindset of a general, a warrior, a strategist, somebody that’s going to be thinking like the Alexander or Napoleon, so you know when someone’s maneuvering a certain way, and know how to respond to it. That’s what you’ll learn from this book.
Listen in here for one of my favorite passages from the book.
The reason why The E Myth is a very, very important book to read is because it allows you as the person who calls themself the entrepreneur to realize that maybe you’re really not an entrepreneur. You think you’re an entrepreneur, but you’re not really an entrepreneur. Or, you are an entrepreneur, but you’re not paying attention to the other sides of the business which is the systems side. Because a lot of times the entrepreneur may be the visionary and not want to deal with all the minutia, and just want to go out there and do all this stuff, and they’re not really paying attention to systems and so you can’t really scale your business. He talks about that in the book.
Listen in here as I read an excerpt from the book where two terms, entrepreneur and technicians are defined. It will help you understand which one you are, and how to unleash the entrepreneur within.
Many people in life will live 75 to 100 years and die, never having really mastered anything.
I respect people that take a certain small thing and they become masters at it.
The book, Mastery, by Robert Greene, does a very good job using stories to explain how you, yourself, can go from somebody who’s a novice at something to being great.
It explains why it’s worth sticking with something and pouring everything you have into it, even if it’s what others consider to be a boring industry. It’s a very, very important book.
As an entrepreneur you will have a lot of conflicts you’ll have to face.
A lot of people don’t even want to deal with conflict. We’re afraid of conflict for many reasons.
The book, Crucial Conversations, has sold 2 million copies. It’s written by four consultants.
I like this book because you’re going to have to have tough conversations with vendors, with partners, with employees, with staff, with executives, with sales, with media, with many different people. How you go about doing it could cost you relationships, could cost you negative feedback, could cost you a person that doesn’t want to do business with you. It could cost you losing a good client. It could cost you many different things, so it’s a very, very important skill set.
Listen in here to hear me read an excerpt from this book.
Number seven is a book that hasn’t done well. It hasn’t sold that many copies. I found it by pure luck. But it’s a really great book.
It’s a book by Howard Guttman called Great Business Teams: Cracking the Code for Standout Performance.
Don’t let this book cover, title, fool you. It’s an exceptional book.
It talks about how to hire people and how to hold them accountable. How to go through a performance review, how to do the one-on-one critiquing. How to create a culture. How to overcome people, to know how to deal with conflict and collaborate instead of compromise, instead of avoidance, instead of arguing.
It goes through every single thing. And one of the parts is accountability. It gives you a step-by-step process on how to hold your team members accountable.
Listen in here for the steps that it provides for holding team members accountable.
The next one is a book I read 13 years ago. It was a book I couldn’t put down. It’s the book Power vs. Force by David R. Hawkins. This book has been recommended by Wayne Dyer, Oprah Winfrey, many different people.
A lot of times in business you’ll try to force people to move. You’ll try to force people to do things. You’ll try to force things to happen in your business and you feel like you’re absolutely burning out because you’re forcing it. It explains how to go from force to power and influence. There’s a part in this book which explains the different level of consciousness.
I did a video on this that had to do with Star Wars.
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And I went through the different levels of consciousness and it explains the different levels of consciousness from the lowest to the highest level.
When you reach a certain level, you get to a point when you’re running a business that everything becomes effortless. People say, “How does he make it look so easy?” Because it really is easy. I went through a certain wall to get to this point where everything becomes easy.
Listen in here for the different levels of consciousness and how they can impact your life and business.
The book, Barbarians to Bureaucrats: Corporate Life Cycle Strategies is so phenomenal that I actually wanted to buy the rights to it.
In it, the author (Lawrence Miller) talks about what happens in societies, and what it takes to build a country. For example, there are warriors, barbarians, explores, builders, administrators, and so on. They all play a very important part in building countries — and businesses.
And understanding the roles that everyone plays, and how to relate to and work with them is crucial, when building a business.
Listen in here to hear me read about the characteristics of a “prophet” and how to best work with them. If you, as an entrepreneur yourself are a prophet, the insight in this book will help those on your team understand you and know how to better work with you.
Number three on the list is a classic. It’s the first book I ever read. When I was working at Bally Total Fitness, my sister said, “You need to read this book.” I did, and it totally changed the way that I viewed and treated people.
Your number one product isn’t software, or demo products, pharmaceuticals, or real estate. It’s not social media, marketing, or advertising. Your number one product is people. And if you don’t understand people, you’re going to have problems in business.
So, the #3 book is How to Win Friends and Influence People. It’s a fascinating book. It’s a classic. Dale Carnegie. I don’t know how many copies have sold. The last number I read was 45 million. It’s one of those books that you need to read.
Listen in here to hear me read a different way of thinking when it comes to winning people.
This is one of those books you want to read once a year, or listen to the audio once a year. It will help you out a lot.
The number two book on the list is an interesting book that was recommended to me by a good friend of mine Bryon. I like the way this guy thinks. And he’s somebody I can learn a lot from because of his brain. He said, “Pat, you’ve got to read this book.” I said, “What book?” He said, Hypomanic Edge.
When you read this book, you will look at hypomanic, manic, ADHD, bipolar, in a completely different way. All of us have somebody like that in our family. If you’re an entrepreneur some of you have been accused on some of these things. You may be happy one day, ticked off the next minute.
I talked about this some in my video 15 Things You Should Know Before Dating an Entrepreneur.
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You may have a lot of gifts on the way you’re brain is wired, but because other people aren’t wired like you, they’ve convinced you that you have problems. If you don’t know that, you think you’re going to be crazy the rest of your life.
This book includes incredible stories of people like Andrew Jackson, Hamilton, George Washington, Clinton, and Kenedy.
Listen in here to hear me read an excerpt from this book.
This book is number two on my list because there’s a major misconception about entrepreneurs and entrepreneurs who don’t know how they’re wired, think they have problems. Go read this book. Thank me later.
I’ve read a lot of books, 1100 books, and this one is at the top of my list. It was a gift given to me by our friend, Phyllis Brown, who bought it for me. I set it aside and then 6 months later read the book. And I said, “Wait a minute, it’s one of the best books I’ve ever read in my life.” I’ve recommended it over and over and over again, and I’ve read it so many different times. The book is called The Law of Success by Napoleon Hill.
Napoleon Hill has written a lot of great books, but this one is at the top of my list. It talks about so many different things in life.
Here is a list of some of the different chapters:
- Self Confidence
- Initiative and Leadership
- More Service than Paid For
- Attractive Personality
- Accurate Thought
- Concentration (a really fantastic chapter)
- Golden Rule
Listen in here as I read an excerpt from this book.
I hope you enjoyed my top 10 books for entrepreneurs. I had a lot of other books that are notable as well. In fact, I have a top 100 books for entrepreneurs, which you can check out here.
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I can tell you that for a guy that never graduated from college, I became who I am today because I became the self-educated student. I didn’t rely on traditional education to have someone tell me how to run a business who has never run a business before. I didn’t see the value in paying 200 bucks for that. I wanted to learn from people who actually ran businesses and these guys have experience that taught me how to do what I’ve done with the business.
So I highly recommend that you go get those books if you haven’t read them, and if there are any other books you would add to the list, comment below.
Last but not least, if you haven’t already done so, click on the button below to subscribe to my YouTube channel, and be sure to share it with your friends that are entrepreneurs.