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15 Must Read Ebooks No Entrepreneur Should Miss Reading

15 Must Read Ebooks No Entrepreneur Should Miss Reading

Every successful entrepreneur knows that knowledge is power. The more knowledge you have, the greater the advantage you’ll enjoy over your competitors. Today’s business climate is rapidly changing every day due to emerging technologies. You need to stay on top of the game to succeed. Don’t let yourself get eaten by the sharks. The 15 eBooks below will inspire and educate you on how to become a shark in the competitive ocean and reach your business goals.

Below is a list of 15 eBooks no entrepreneur should miss reading.

The 4-Hour Workweek by Tim Ferriss – $15.20 Kindle edition

This classic helps you find motivation if you’re unsure if you can take the leap and start your own business. It teaches you how to build a business from scratch using minimal resources and make it look like a fortune 500 company even though it’s only you behind the wheel. If you want to be more productive and find ways to automate as many tasks as possible, while focusing on the core business, this is a must read. It’s filled with tons of real world advice and templates on how to move your business forward in all areas.

Influence by Robert D.Cialdini – $10.99 Kindle edition

Persuasion is a key skill to master in business. It’s valuable in sales, negotiations, and partnerships. This book cover everything you need to know to understand and master persuasion, it explains the hidden tricks so you can stay alert and be aware of the situation while communicating with internal and external stakeholders. Understanding human psychology is vital in every business, and this book will not only teach you how to use it, but also make you realize the importance of it.

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Contagious by Jonah Berger – $13.99 Kindle edition

If you’re on tight marketing budget or not, going viral with your product or service is beneficial. It’s cost efficient and word of mouth is a strong marketing tactic. Jonah Berger explains the mechanism of why things catch on, what goes viral and how. The book teaches you to spot the key ingredients that make people share and care. Triggering the right emotions at the right time with the right message is a skill every successful entrepreneur should master.

Zero to One by Peter Thiel and Blake Masters – $18.10 Kindle edition

Paypal co-founder and early investor in Facebook, Peter Thiel knows how to build businesses. Yes, those are massive success stories, but you should always aim for the skies. This book will make you feel like a hero, and help you understand the underlying aspects of creating a business from nothing. Entrepreneurs are often told to listen to what customers want and not create anything more than a test product to later adapt it for success. Thiel talks about the importance to instead tell customers what they want, just like Apple did. We didn’t know that we wanted an iPhone since it didn’t exist. Steve Jobs told us that we wanted one. Influence by Robert D.Cialdini listed above is also extremely relevant in that aspect. Zero to One helps you learn to think for yourself,  and to apply the ultimate strategy suited for your business.

The Art of the Start 2.0 by Guy Kawasaki – $19.97 Kindle Edition

As technology develops, new methods of creating businesses arise. Social Media, crowdfunding, and digital marketing are all cost effective methods to create a business today compared to 20 years ago. This book will help you deploy all these new tools in an efficient way, as well as help you manage fundamental challenges that have not changed as much, such as building a strong team. The Art of The Start will help you make your crazy ideas to stick in the constantly changing marketplace.

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The Lean Startup by Eric Ries – $6.24 Kindle Edition

A great framework can help any entrepreneur systematically create innovation and maximize the chances to succeed. You can use it as a checklist on how to develop your business into a successful machine. This is a step by step guide covering the start, learning, experimenting, testing, measuring, pivoting, adapting and growing– all aspects from start to finish. A must read for the ones who like to work systematically and have full control.

The Hard Thing about Hard Things by Ben Horowitz – $16.99 Kindle Edition

Starting a business is great, but also challenging. You need to be aware that everything won’t go as planned all the time; to be prepared will help you stand up and rise in case you are on your way to fall. This book analyzes problems that entrepreneurs face each day. It talks about hard things from poaching competitors to firing employees and will help you predict the less pleasant situations and minimize the surprises when they happen.

The Thank You Economy by Gary Vaynerchuck – $11.99 Kindle Edition

This is a valuable read on how the Internet has given consumers their voice and a power to make it heard. You now have to compete on a different level. Marketing dollars are not as effective anymore, and it’s hard to buy your way into success and customer awareness.
This book helps you scale personal one to one attention to your clients using social media platforms that carry word of mouth. It will show you how and why to care and interact with your customers, to harness the word-of-mouth power of social media platforms. Contagious by Jonah Berger works well with this book.

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The Advanced Guide to Content Marketing by Quicksprout – Free eBook

You can’t afford to be missing out on content marketing. It’s a cost-efficient way to create buzz around your business and to drive traffic. Content marketing is also not as intrusive as traditional advertising and delivers value to the reader. The guide offers a number of ways to help you increase traffic, leads, and conversions.

The Ultimate Guide to A/B Testing by Oli Gardner and Carlos del Rio – Free eBook

Testing and measuring in order to know what works and what doesn’t is crucial. As you know more knowledge equals more power; the more data you have the better decisions you can take to create a positive impact on your business. You don’t want to drive without headlights in the dark right? This book will help you understand what to measure, why and how. It will help you create workflows and transform data into valuable information that can help your business decisions.

The Beginners Guide to Online Marketing by Neil Patel and Ritika Puri – Free eBook

This guide touches on all important aspects of online marketing strategies and makes sure you don’t miss out on any crucial steps when starting out with your online marketing efforts. It will help you be aware of your entire funnel, from the laser focus on customers to actual sales and everything needed in between in order to succeed online.

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Unleashing The Ideavirus by Seth Godin – Free eBook

Is the customer always right? According to this book, the customer should spread the marketing message of your company, not you. The book helps you understand the value of the customer-to-customer dialogue, contrary to the traditional business-to-customer model. Godin calls the powerful customer-to-customer marketing method the Ideavirus. The book shows you how to create your own virus and how any business can use it to succeed in the world that is moving away from traditional marketing.

Measure What Matters by Kissmetrics – Free eBook

Another book about measuring what matters and staying informed to make the right decisions. You can’t afford to lack competence in this field. This book will show you how the lack of the proper analytics tools holds your business back, and will help you see the advantages of having correct data. Being aware of where the analytics industry is heading is highly important in order not to be surprised in the future.

How To Build Your First E-mail List In Only 3 Days by Mike Mercadante – Free eBook

This is a great book that helps you build an e-mail list from scratch. E-mail marketing might not sound so sexy, but it’s actually a powerful tool for today’s entrepreneurs. Effective e-mail marketing campaigns deliver a high return on investment and you have full control and ownership. This book offers a step by step formula to build your list and make it grow in only 3 days. What are you waiting for? Start building!

The Bootstrappers Bible by Seth Godin – Free Manifesto

Starting a business is hard, starting one with limited resources is even harder. Effective bootstrapping not only makes it possible to make progress with limited resources, it forces you to make smart decisions and avoid waste and mistakes. This manifesto by the marketing guru Seth Godin will show you how to start a business with no money and help you see the light even in dark times.

What other books would you like to add to this list? Please share your knowledge to help entrepreneurs find content to learn from.

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Last Updated on August 16, 2018

16 Productivity Secrets of Highly Successful People Revealed

16 Productivity Secrets of Highly Successful People Revealed

The same old motivational secrets don’t really motivate you after you’ve read them for the tenth time, do they?

How about a unique spin on things?

These 16 productivity secrets of successful people will make you reevaluate your approach to your home, work, and creative lives. Learn from these highly successful people, turn these little things they do into your daily habits and you’ll get closer to success.

1. Empty your mind.

It sounds counterproductive, doesn’t it?

Emptying your mind when you have so much to remember seems like you’re just begging to forget something. Instead, this gives you a clean slate so you’re not still thinking about last week’s tasks.

Clear your mind and then start thinking only about what you need to do immediately, and then today. Tasks that need to be accomplished later in the week can wait.

Here’s a guide to help you empty your mind and think sharper:

How to Declutter Your Mind to Sharpen Your Brain and Fall Asleep Faster

2. Keep certain days clear.

Some companies are scheduling “No Meeting Wednesdays,” which means, funnily enough, that no one can hold a meeting on a Wednesday. This gives workers a full day to work on their own tasks, without getting sidetracked by other duties or pointless meetings.

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This can work in your personal life too, for example if you need to restrict Facebook access or limit phone calls.

3. Prioritize your work.

Don’t think every task is created equal! Some tasks aren’t as important as others, or might take less time.

Try to sort your tasks every day and see what can be done quickly and efficiently. Get these out of the way so you have more free time and brain power to focus on what is more important.

Lifehack’s CEO has a unique way to prioritize works, take a look at it here:

How to Prioritize Right in 10 Minutes and Work 10X Faster

4. Chop up your time.

Many successful business leaders chop their time up into fifteen-minute intervals. This means they work on tasks for a quarter of an hour at a time, or schedule meetings for only fifteen minutes. It makes each hour seem four times as long, which leads to more productivity!

5. Have a thinking position.

Truman Capote claimed he couldn’t think unless he was laying down. Proust did this as well, while Stravinsky would stand on his head!

What works for others may not work for you. Try to find a spot and position that is perfect for you to brainstorm or come up with ideas.

6. Pick three to five things you must do that day.

To Do lists can get overwhelming very quickly. Instead of making a never-ending list of everything you can think of that needs to be done, make daily lists that include just three to five things.

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Make sure they’re things that need to be done that day, so you don’t keep putting them off.

7. Don’t try to do too much.

OK, so I just told you to work every day, and now I’m telling you to not do too much? It might sound like conflicting advice, but not doing too much means not biting off more than you can chew. Don’t say yes to every work project or social engagement and find yourself in way over your head.

8. Have a daily action plan.

Don’t limit yourself to a to-do list! Take ten minutes every morning to map out a daily action plan. It’s a place to not only write what needs to be done that day, but also to prioritize what will bring the biggest reward, what will take the longest, and what goals will be accomplished.

Leave room for a “brain dump,” where you can scribble down anything else that’s on your mind.

9. Do your most dreaded project first.

Getting your most dreaded task over with first means you’ll have the rest of the day free for anything and everything else. This also means that you won’t be constantly putting off the worst of your projects, making it even harder to start on it later.

10. Follow the “Two-Minute Rule.”

The “Two-Minute Rule” was made famous by David Allen. It’s simple – if a new task comes in and it can be done in two minutes or less, do it right then. Putting it off just adds to your to-do list and will make the task seem more monumental later.

11. Have a place devoted to work.

If you work in an office, it’s no problem to say that your cubicle desk is where you work every day.

But if you work from home, make sure you have a certain area specifically for work. You don’t want files spread out all over the dinner table, and you don’t want to feel like you’re not working just because you’re relaxing on the couch.

Agatha Christie never wrote at her desk, she wrote wherever she could sit down. Ernest Hemingway wrote standing up. Thomas Wolfe, at 6’6″ tall, used the top of his refrigerator as a desk. Richard Wright wrote on a park bench, rain or shine.

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Have a space where, when you go there, you know you’re going to work. Maybe it’s a cafe downstairs, the library, or a meeting room. Whenever and wherever works for you, do your works there.

12. Find your golden hour.

You don’t have to stick to a “typical” 9–5 schedule!

Novelist Anne Rice slept during the day and wrote at night to avoid distractions. Writer Jerzy Kosinski slept eight hours a day, but never all at once. He’d wake in the morning, work, sleep four hours in the afternoon, then work more that evening.

Your golden hour is the time when you’re at your peak. You’re alert, ready to be productive, and intent on crossing things off your to-do list.

Once you find your best time, protect it with all your might. Make sure you’re always free to do your best uninterrupted work at this time.

13. Pretend you’re on an airplane.

It might not be possible to lock everyone out of your office to get some peace and quiet, but you can eliminate some distractions.

By pretending you’re on an airplane, you can act like your internet access is limited, you’re not able to get something from your bookcase, and you can’t make countless phone calls.

Eliminating these distractions will help you focus on your most important tasks and get them done without interruption.

14. Never stop.

Writers Anthony Trollope and Henry James started writing their next books as soon as they finished their current work in progress.

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Stephen King writes every day of the year, and holds himself accountable for 2,000 words a day! Mark Twain wrote every day, and then read his day’s work aloud to his family to get their feedback.

There’s something to be said about working nonstop, and putting out continuous work instead of taking a break. It’s just a momentum that will push you go further./

15. Be in tune with your body.

Your mind and body will get tired of a task after ninety minutes to two hours focused on it. Keep this in mind as you assign projects to yourself throughout the day, and take breaks to ensure that you won’t get burned out.

16. Try different methods.

Vladimir Nabokov wrote the first drafts of his novels on index cards. This made it easy to rearrange sentences, paragraphs, and chapters by shuffling the cards around.

It does sound easier, and more fun, than copying and pasting in Word! Once Nabokov liked the arrangement, his wife typed them into a single manuscript.

Same for you, don’t give up and think that it’s impossible for you to be productive when one method fails. Try different methods until you find what works perfectly for you.

Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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