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20 Books Written By Successful CEOs No Aspiring Entrepreneur Should Miss

20 Books Written By Successful CEOs No Aspiring Entrepreneur Should Miss

We are a vicarious generation ruled by the internet with the thoughts of the world in our mind but with the immense dormancy to translate that into our lives mainly because of the lack of motivation or “appropriate” ideas.

Though torrents of information scattered in the burrows of the internet provide us some ideas, to develop concrete ideas with which we can work on, we must read books–the accounts of people who have “been there, done that” to have comprehensive knowledge of the subject.

If you are an aspiring entrepreneur and really want to understand the essence of entrepreneurship, here we present you the list of ultimate entrepreneurial books, written by highly successful CEOs in their realm.

1. Smart People Should Build Things (Andrew Yang)

1

    “Personally, I always dreamed about going into the woods and fighting the dragon, not selling the guy a sword.”

    Andrew Yang is the Founder and President of “Venture for America”. He was frustrated by the students studying law or finance or medicine for the sake of money and status. Yang worried their perfunctory work produced no real output.

    In Smart People Should Build Things, a resurrected lawyer and entrepreneur weaves a compelling narrative of success stories (including his own). With thorough limpidness, he describes the flow of talent in the U.S. and explains how the current trends are resulting in a cultural decline in the “Land of Dreams”.

    2. Straight from the Gut (Jack Welch)

    2

      “Control your own destiny or someone else will.”

      John Francis “Jack” Welch, Jr. is a former American business executive, chemical engineer and an author. He served as the CEO and Chairman of General Electric from 1981 to 2001.

      In this NY Times bestseller, Welch narrates his spectacular career with his work ethic, passion and overtness. From his early childhood era to his job at General Electric and his meteoric rise, his business fervor led the way for successes in his extraordinary career.

      3. Nothing to Lose, Everything to Gain (Ryan Blair)

      3

        “Your future takes precedence over your past. Focus on your future, rather than on the past.”

        Ryan Blair is the CEO and co-founder of the multi-level advertising corporation ViSalus Sciences. In his book, Blair rushes our adrenaline by making audacious points with his devil-may-care attitude that reflects in his words.

        He inspires entrepreneurs to take bold decisions and never regret the past. “Has this world been so kind to you that you should leave with regret? There are better things ahead than any we leave behind.” This well-known quote by C.S. Lewis, author of The Great Divorce, perfectly summarizes Blair’s book.

        4. The Promise of a Pencil (Adam Braun)

        4

          “The single most powerful element of youth is our inability to know what’s impossible.”

          With relevant anecdotes and motivational monologues, Adam Braun, CEO of Pencils of Promise, delivers his prophecy in this book. The gist of the book, as he summarized it in his Reddit AMA interview, is “Speak the language of the person you seek to become.”

          Braun advises that you shouldn’t hold your dreams within you, but express them to others and they’ll not only help you move in that direction but you’ll feel responsible to them and yourself in getting there.

          5. The Impact Equation (Chris Brogan and Julien Smith)

          5

            “Don’t settle: Don’t finish crappy books. If you don’t like the menu, leave the restaurant. If you’re not on the right path, get off it.”

            Chris Brogan and Julien Smith are authors, journalists, marketing gurus and social media marketers. As the title suggests, this book is about self-actualization and covers a great range of exercises to evaluate your ideas and communicate them properly.

            Brogan and Smith’s book includes easy to understand mnemonics, insidious tactics and many interesting encounters with the writer duo’s favorite celebrities. The things you’ll learn from this book will be tantamount to the fun you’re going to have.

            6. Who: The A Method of Hiring (Geoff Smart and Randy Street)

            6

              “Do not hire anybody who has been pushed out of 20 percent or more of their jobs.”

              Randy Street and Geoff Smart are entrepreneurs and authors from Atlanta. They arrange motivational seminars and conduct campaigns to motivate aspiring entrepreneurs.

              This book can be an important manual for entrepreneurs to hire the appropriate individuals for the job. The authors have presented a detailed account of personnel management and have simplified the tedious process of employee selection.

              7. Taking People with You (David Novak)

              7

                “Roots can live without branches, although truncated; branches cannot live without roots.”

                David Colin Novak is an American businessman. He currently serves as the executive chairman of YUM! Brands, Inc. In this book, he highlights one of the most vital quality of entrepreneur–social skills.

                An entrepreneur should be more than everything affable and should be able to inspire people. As Michael Jenkins of Shout Agency rightly puts, “Companies who are too reliant on technology and do not have enough of a human presence will lose their edge over the next few years.” And Novak exactly illustrates how in his honest book.

                8. Conscious Capitalism (John Mackey)

                8

                  “It’s competition that forces companies to get out of their complacency.”

                  John Mackey is an American businessman. He is the current co-CEO of Whole Foods Market, which he co-founded in 1980. Named the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year in 2003, Mackey is a strong supporter of free market economics.

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                  Though modern businesses tend to be filled with fraud, deceit and counterfeits, Mackey still believes business–more than anything–is an art. He believes in living up to the spirit of fair trade and offers his highly persuading views on logical capitalism.

                  9. Rework (Jason Fried)

                  9

                    “What you do is what matters, not what you think or say or plan.”

                    Jason Fried is the CEO and co-founder of Basecamp, Inc. He is a dedicated man and he believes commitment plans are way more important than exit plans.

                    He has presented an almost stepwise guide to establish a successful business. If you are a committed entrepreneur who wants to establish something big and are willing to be patient, you’ll certainly bow to his higher degree of wisdom in entrepreneurship.

                    10. Let My People Go Surfing (Yvon Chouinard)

                    10

                      “The more you know, the less you need.”

                      Yvon Chouinard is a rock climber, environmentalist and outdoor industry businessman. He’s the founder of two successful companies, Black Diamond Equipment and Patagonia. He is also a writer, who first started by writing on climbing issues and ethics, and later on entrepreneurship.

                      What creates a well-functioning machine are its well-functioning components. If machines are analogous to an enterprise, employees are the functional monomers. Chouinard’s book postures that the creative output of the company is cumulative of the individual creative output of employees.

                      11. #Girlboss (Sophia Amoruso)

                      11

                        “The energy you’ll expend focusing on someone else’s life is better spent working on your own. Just be your own idol.”

                        Sophia Amoruso is the founder and owner of Nasty Gal, which trades women’s fashion that includes modern and vintage clothing, shoes, and accessories through the brand’s website.

                        From a school drop out to shoplifter to eBay seller to CEO, her journey has been full of twists and turns. After 200 odd pages, entrepreneurs will be surely inspired to be a #Girlboss themselves.

                        12. Raising the Bar (Gary Erickson)

                        12

                          “I’ve seen what happens to companies that get bought. They lose the values that were set up.”

                          Gary Erickson is the co-owner as well as co-chief visionary officer of Clif Bar, a company in America which produces organic foods and drinks. If you’re an aspiring entrepreneur, this book can be a guide to your corporate integrity.

                          The book is filled with arresting personal anecdotes of Erickson, with refreshing personal stories from his life trekking in the Himalayan Mountains to his bicycle riding over roadless European mountain passes, with a perfect blend of his life philosophy.

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                          13. Pour Your Heart into It (Howard Schultz)

                          13

                            “I think if you’re an entrepreneur, you’ve got to dream big and then dream bigger.”

                            Howard D. Schultz is an American businessman, best known as the chairman and CEO of Starbucks. He formerly owned the Seattle SuperSonics and was on the Board of Directors at Square, Inc.

                            Schultz insists on offering customers something they are not accustomed to–something superior. Although it may take some time for customers to be palatable, it helps you instill a sense of discovery in them and create a higher bond of loyalty.

                            14. CEO Tools: The Nuts-N-Bolts for Every Manager’s Success (Kraig Kramers)

                            14

                              “The two most powerful words in any language are: What If.”

                              Kraig Kramers is an experienced and seasoned business executive, author and business speaker who has been CEO of eight companies in diverse industries. Currently, he is president and CEO of Corporate Partners, Inc., which is one of the top consulting firms.

                              CEO Tools, with its worthy subtitle, is truly an encyclopedia of management. As The Effective Executive writer Peter Drucker bemoans, “Most of what we call management consists of making it difficult for people to get their work done.” This book helps you understand the essence of management.

                              15. The HP Way: How Bill Hewlett and I Built Our Company (David Packard)

                              15

                                “Marketing is too important to be left to the marketing department.”

                                David Packard co-founded Hewlett-Packard along with William Hewlett and served as president, CEO, and chairman of the board. He also served as U.S. Deputy Secretary of Defense during the Nixon administration.

                                Packard describes HP’s history with pieces from his life and devotes each chapter to the seven commitments of his company vision: profit, customers, field of interest, growth, employees, organization and citizenship.

                                16. Winning: The Ultimate Business How-To Book (Jack Welch and Suzy Welch)

                                16

                                  “When you were made a leader, you weren’t given a crown, you were given the responsibility to bring out the best in others.”

                                  This is the second book on this list that features Jack Welch, CEO of General Electric. Along with his wife Suzie, Welch gives valuable advice from his perspective to today’s managers and future managers on how to organize and manage a company.

                                  This book provides deep insights on the pros and cons of management. It focuses on important issues, such as creating a company’s mission statement, developing its strategy and building its values. The authors also emphasize the importance work-life balance.

                                  17. The Hard Thing about Hard Things (Ben Horowitz)

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                                  17

                                    “What is the hard thing about hard things? That they don’t have a formula.”

                                    Ben Horowitz, former CEO of Opsware, shares his opinion on opening and running a startup company. While many people write about the power of entrepreneurship and the holy thing about starting a business, very few speak about the difficulties.

                                    This is probably one of the most influential books every aspiring entrepreneur must read if they want honest management advice. A lifelong devotee of rap music, he offers business lessons in style, using his favorite lyrics to strengthen them.

                                    18. Business @ the Speed of Thought (Bill Gates)

                                    18

                                      “How you gather, manage, and use information will determine whether you win or lose.”

                                      Bill Gates, former CEO and co-founder of Microsoft, puts his views on the influence of technology in running a business in a better way in his book. He discusses how technology can be used to run businesses in a more effective manner.

                                      This book is particularly for those who agree that “technology will be the major form of business in near future.” It’s perfect as a manual that offers an outline on the use of information technology in order to improve business.

                                      19. Setting the Table: The Transforming Power of Hospitality in Business (Danny Meyer)

                                      19

                                        “Hospitality is how the delivery of that product makes its recipient feel.”

                                        Danny Meyer, CEO of Union Square Hospitality Group, shares a fascinating tale about the creation of his most beloved restaurants which provide warm hospitality and consistent excellence.

                                        Setting the Table is a best-selling treasure of valuable, innovative thoughts full of exciting examples. It is applicable to all kinds of businesses. The focus of this book is on hospitality and the author views it as the foundation of his business philosophy.

                                        20. My Years with General Motors (Alfred Sloan)

                                        20

                                          “Bedside manners are no substitute for the right diagnosis.”

                                          Alfred Pritchard Sloan, Jr. was an American business executive in the automotive industry. He was a long-time president, CEO and chairman of General Motors Corporation.

                                          The life of Alfred Sloan like every other entrepreneur was cranky, unpredictable and above all difficult. Sloan’s book praises the idea that while entrepreneurs can be good at many things, there are still things they need help with. And it’s okay to ask for help.

                                          Featured photo credit: Business woman and project/Sergey Nivens via thinkstockphotos.com

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                                          Last Updated on October 16, 2018

                                          How to Quit Your Job That You Hate and Start Doing What You Love

                                          How to Quit Your Job That You Hate and Start Doing What You Love

                                          Everyone of us has a plan in our head that was taken over by family responsibilities, social pressure or sheep mentality. This made us a slave to instant gratification and started killing our plan and dreams.

                                          There is a way to revive your plans and dreams and live a happier life. No amount of salary can exceed your desire to do something that you are really passionate about.

                                          If you hate your job and have thought about leaving your job, here’s how to quit your job and start doing what you love:

                                          1. Identify if you really want to quit to follow your passion

                                          There could be many possible reasons to figure out why you are discouraged to go to work and start thinking about how to quitting your job. Figure out the reasons or signs that make you feel that you should really quit your job.

                                          If these reasons are not related to your office environment or your ultimate goal is to pay your bills from your job, you should consider getting a new job in the same field. It’s better to be an experienced receptionist than to live a dream that is not yours.

                                          2. Start with the side hustle and keep it going

                                          Work after you get back home and build up your product or service enough to gain confidence to quit your job.

                                          Build the website, write down the business plan, design your product, make marketing collaterals or do whatever it takes for you to start working full time on your new venture before quitting your current job.

                                          You could also consider part-time working opportunities if your current job sucks a lot of your energy. This way you could save your energy and dedicate more time to your side hustle.

                                          Ensure that you don’t quit until your new venture really demands your full time dedication. You might lose interest in your new venture if you fall short of survival money.

                                          3. Save enough to pay your bills

                                          If you need to pursue your passion, you need your monthly bills to be taken care of, without any worries. You must cut down on unnecessary expenses and squeeze in those extra bucks on your savings while you are at your current job. You should forget those weekend parties and social outings unless they’re meant for networking.

                                          It makes no sense to quit your job without having any savings. Your new venture will not start paying you immediately. Starting a recurring deposit account is a good idea to start off with. Put aside a considerable amount every month as soon as you get your paycheque and forget about that money until you quit your job.

                                          4. Write down your goals

                                          It is important to have visual proof and a daily reminder of why you quit your job and started a new hustle.

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                                          Write down your goals and read them at least once a week. If you are a forgetful person, create cell phone or desktop wallpapers of your goals and set them until you achieve them. Visual proof keeps you on track.

                                          These goals are the bigger picture of what you wish to achieve in your pursuit to doing what you love.

                                          For example, if you are wish to design the best dresses in the whole state, write it down. If you wish to fly to Mars, write it down. If you really wish to give up your career for something, it better be worth remembering everyday. Show it to yourself daily.

                                          5. Make a plan

                                          Write down a plan of action for the next 12 months. It’s like writing down an elaborate execution plan in your calendar. This could be a daily, weekly or monthly to-do list of your tasks to achieve your goals.

                                          Learn how to make a plan if that’s not your area of expertise. Ensure that you know what you’re going to do next and not run like a headless chicken after two months of working for yourself.

                                          Review the plan time and again to track your progress. This will give you a clear picture of your performance and your shortcomings.

                                          Also, have a backup plan. Even great planners and strategists fail before achieving success. Ensure that you have a second plan if your first one does not work out as you predicted.

                                          6. Get professional advice

                                          Talk to experienced people in the field you want to venture out. Go to networking events and connect with people in your industry. Most people will help you out with good advice and good contacts.

                                          Get professional courses in part time colleges. It could be great to network and the teachers can be of great help to understand more about the industry. They will help you analyse your plan and connect you to influential people.

                                          7. Prepare yourself to put a resignation

                                          Prepare yourself mentally to quit your job after you’ve realized the potential and prepared yourself to take a deep dive into your new profession.

                                          Leave on a friendly note. Don’t make enemies with your bosses. These connections could help you further in your profession.

                                          Don’t burn the bridges. It’s better to have a face-to-face conversation with your boss or reporting manager than sending a surprise mail.

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                                          Tell them sincerely about your new venture and why it is important for you. Serve the notice period completely and work till the last day. Complete all your tasks as you would on a regular day. This will maintain your respect and keep your relationships intact.

                                          8. Be prepared to get your hands dirty

                                          As an entrepreneur, you have to do everything that’s needed to keep your work going.

                                          You have to perform all the tasks needed to keep your new venture going. You have to be a janitor, an administrator, an accountant, a designer or a salesperson all at once.

                                          There would be a point of time where you will have to perform tasks that aren’t your favourite. Be ready to perform such tasks without cringing.

                                          9. Have no baggage

                                          Don’t have a debt! Clear all your loans, debts and pending commitments before starting off. You want to fully concentrate on your new activity and not be bent down by loading your shoulders with any burden.

                                          You would want to enjoy your freedom to work incessantly. No distractions whatsoever are allowed to come close to you when you are fully involved in the rhythm of development. Shun away materialism!

                                          10. Don’t be in two minds

                                          It’s good to analyze the best and the worst possibilities in your head, but it’s not at all good to doubt yourself.

                                          Move ahead with confidence. It’s your life, your plan and your rules. Nothing and nobody can stop you from doing what you wish to do.

                                          The more you start getting noticed, the more people will point fingers at you. Don’t let them affect you and create doubts in your head. As William Shakespeare said,

                                          “Our doubts are traitors, and make us lose the good we oft might win, by fearing to attempt.”

                                          11. Learn to handle failure

                                          You are going to be a loser and it’s a good thing! If you fail and lose, you will learn to not repeat your mistakes and make yourself stronger with every punch you throw out.

                                          It takes time till you start losing. The key is to not be demotivated by failure. The more the failure, the more closer you are to success.

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                                          12. Try your hands at investing in stock market or cryptocurrency

                                          It’s a good way to keep your side income rolling in. While you are busy building your dream project, you could invest your money in the stock market or cryptocurrency and let it grow while you sleep.

                                          As Warren Buffet famously quoted,

                                          “If you don’t find a way to make money while you sleep, you will work until you die.”

                                          Find a good stock broker who has enough experience to not lose your money. Stop immediately if you are losing a lot of money. Don’t burn away your money.

                                          13. Keep a healthy routine

                                          It’s easy to forget about your health when you are working on something that you’re really passionate about. Set reminders about your health routine.

                                          Exercise! Most successful people start their day early and take time out to exercise at least thrice a week. It helps you give more energy and time to your work.

                                          Always remember that you started your new venture to be happier. Bad health will not let you enjoy your success.

                                          Join yoga classes or learn meditation from youtube. Avoid sitting too long at one place for more than 15 minutes at a stretch, take breaks. take a walk, especially up-down the staircase as much as you can to skip age related joint pains and muscle atrophies.[1]

                                          14. Enjoy your days off

                                          Taking a break helps your creativity and clears your mind from clutter. You need your days off to come back afresh and take on your tasks. You can’t be working 24/7.

                                          Remember that being able to take your days off is one of the beneficial quirks of an entrepreneurial journey. You can have a routine designed by yourself, for yourself.

                                          Take your days off when you are too stressed and can’t think straight. Self-discipline might sound simple but practice takes ages. Schedule down time for yourself.

                                          15. Take these steps to quit your job without burning bridges

                                          Resume.io has this infographic about the steps you should take after you’ve decided to quit your job:[2]

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                                            16. Remember why you quit your job

                                            Lastly, remember why you quit your job and started doing what you love. There would be bad days that will make you regret your decision, but don’t let them dominate the reason why you took the plunge.

                                            Your soul wasn’t happy with what you were doing. Your new venture is what you always wanted to do.

                                            Never forget that.

                                            If nothing works out, you could still go back to any job you want, but at least, you’d be spared from regrets and constantly arriving “What if?” question in your head.

                                            So, start now and live without any regrets.

                                            Execution matters more than thought. Turn your dream into a reality starting today. Start small and grow big.

                                            Besides, it’s never too late to do what you want to do. Here’s the proof:

                                            How to Start Over and Reboot Your Life When It Seems Too Late

                                            Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

                                            Reference

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