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20 Biographies Of Influential Business Leaders You Should Not Miss

20 Biographies Of Influential Business Leaders You Should Not Miss

There are a lot of influential business leaders out there, too many to mention in one article, so some of the best and most popular ones have been chosen. They range from people that that started with nothing, to people that had everything and turn it into billions. This is my Top 20 biographies of business leaders that inspire and motivate to move on and try something new. The list is in no particular order.

1. King Icahn: The Biography of a Renegade Capitalist

By Mark Stevens

King Carl Icahn

    “In life and business, there are two cardinal sins. The first is to act precipitously without thought and the second is to not act at all.”

    Here is an investment and renegade capitalist that became one of the richest men in America.

    2. Wild Company: The Untold Story of Banana Republic

    By Mel and Patricia Ziegler

    Wild Company by Mel and Patricia Ziegler

      “The only asset we had was our own oblivion.”

      This is a book about two people who created the Banana Republic. It explains how they had no business training and how they used military surplus clothing to produce their designs that founded the Banana Republic stores.

      3. Start Something That Matters

      By Blake Mycoskie

      Start Something That Matters

        “You don’t have to have a lot of money, a complicated business plan, or a great deal of experience to start something.”

        This is the story of how TOMs was created, which is a process by which people buy shoes and eventually give them away to needy children. It is a lesson in resourcefulness.

        4. The Autobiography of Andrew Carnegie and The Gospel of Wealth

        By Andrew Carnegie

        Andrew Carnegie

          “There is no class so pitiably wretched as that which possesses money and nothing else.”

          This is a man that was laughed out of the boardroom when he said he can drive down the price of steel from $170 per ton to $20 per ton, and he is the reason America is the superpower it is today.

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          5. Be my Guest

          By Conrad Hilton

          Be-My-Guest-CONRAD-HILTON

            “Success seems to be connected with action. Successful people keep moving. They make mistakes, but they don’t quit.”

            This is the story of a guy and his friends and how they made an empire out of hotels.

            6. The Martha Rules: 10 Essentials for Achieving Success as You Start, Grow, or Manage a Business

            by Martha Stewart

            Martha-Rules-Essentials-Achieving-Business

              “Build your business success around something that you love.”

              This is the same lady that did some insider trading, so there are some dirty deals that are missing from her book, but otherwise it lays out how a person turns what they love into their personal fortune.

              7. Rich Dad Poor Dad: What The Rich Teach Their Kids About Money That the Poor and Middle Class Do Not!

              By Robert T. Kiyosaki

              Rich dad poor dad

                “Failure defeats losers, failure inspires winners.”

                This is a book that tries to teach people the things that rich people teach their kids. He claims that middle and lower class people do not teach their kids these lessons, which makes them have it harder in life.

                8. Steve Jobs

                By Walter Isaacson

                Steve Jobs

                  “There is no reason not to follow your heart.”

                  This is a book based on 40 interviews with Steve Jobs and helps to expose the life of a man that was fired by a failing giant only to come back and give it new legs. Learn how he survived and had fun and how he helped change the face of mobile technology forever.

                  9. Super Rich: A Guide to Having It All

                  By Russell Simmons

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                  Super-Rich-Guide-Having-All

                    “I want to fight poverty and ignorance and give opportunity to those people who are locked out.”

                    A book about a man that built his fortune and become a bestselling author of “Do you.”

                    10. Conscious Capitalism, With a New Preface by the Authors: Liberating the Heroic Spirit of Business

                    By John Mackey

                    Conscious-Capitalism

                      “Whole Foods is dedicated to helping people be healthier and live lives with more vitality and greater sense of well being.”

                      This is the Whole Foods CEO that basically founded the whole foods market in America in a big way.

                      11. Powerful Inspirations: Eight Lessons that Will Change Your Life

                      By Kathy Ireland

                      Powerful Inspirations

                        “I have to say I’ve made many mistakes, and been humbled many, many times. But you know what? It’s never too late to learn.”

                        She proved a woman can be sexy and successful in business, too. She struck a blow for feminism and now has several books you may enjoy.

                        12. Idea Man: A Memoir by the Cofounder of Microsoft

                        By Paul Allen

                        Idea Man Paul Allen

                          Any crusade requires optimism and the ambition to aim high.” 

                          This is a book about a 21-year-old that became a co-founder of Microsoft. This is a great story about the beginning of Microsoft, which is already a great story, so it is good to hear it from another angle.

                          13. Delivering Happiness: A Path to Profits, Passion, and Purpose

                          by Tony Hseih

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                          Delivering Happiness Hsieh

                            “We wanted to run our own business, and be in control of our own destiny.”

                            This is about a guy that made $265 million at the age of 24 by selling an advertising platform to Microsoft. Even if you read the bunk of a man such as this you are still going to learn something.

                            14. Shark Tales: How I Turned $1,000 into a Billion Dollar Business

                            By Barbara Corcoran

                            Shark Tales

                              “I borrowed $1,000 from a friend.”

                              This is a story about turning one thousand dollars into a billion. It is about a woman that couldn’t find a job she liked and did create the Corcoran Group that is worth $6 billion.

                              15. Alwaleed: Businessman, Billionaire, Prince

                              By Riz Khan

                              Alwaleed Businessman, Billionaire, Prince

                                “If I’m going to do something, I do it spectacularly or I don’t do it at all.”

                                This is the story of one of the richest men in the world who has an amazing investing style that keeps him rich. He is part of the Saudi Royal family and has amassed a fortune larger than many countries tax budgets (and debts).

                                16. Losing My Virginity: How I Survived, Had Fun, and Made a Fortune Doing Business My Way

                                By Richard Branson

                                Losing My Virginity

                                  “Most ‘necessary evils’ are far more evil than necessary.”

                                  This is one of Richard Branson’s books and it is amazing to see how your childhood affects the person you are. He also gives clues to getting rich that are very similar to the clues in the book, “The millionaire next door.” He is a very clever man that has a way of seeming like a big-headed nobody you shouldn’t fear. Maybe that is the way he has managed to build up such a big empire.

                                  17. Walt Disney: An American Original

                                  By Bob Thomas

                                  Walt Disney

                                    Give the public everything you can give them, keep the place as clean as you can keep it, keep it friendly.”

                                    Here is a man that built a massive empire that has affected every country in the world at some point in the past. Here is a man that took a cartoon mouse and built an empire with it that still stands today.

                                    18. Built from Scratch: How a Couple of Regular Guys Grew The Home Depot from Nothing to $30 Billion

                                    By Arthur Blank and Bernie Marcus

                                    Built from Scratch

                                      Take two Jews who have just been fired, add an Irishman that walked away from a bankruptcy and an Italian with a no-name investment banking firm and you have the recipe for success.” 

                                      This is a book about the man that turned Home Depot into a $30 Billion business. This is a nice book for showing you that even if you are fired you can still have a future if you are willing to build one.

                                      19. Business leaders Michael Dell

                                      By Lauri S. Friedman

                                      Lauri S. Friedman

                                        Twenty years and $40 billion. They seem like good round numbers.” 

                                        This is the guy that helped to found the Dell computer organization and made millions as a result.

                                        20. By Invitation Only: How We Built Gilt and Changed the Way Millions Shop

                                        By Alexis Maybank and Alexandra Wilkis Wilson

                                        By Invitation Only

                                          “On that first day we sensed something revolutionary was happening.”

                                          This is about a pair of rich friends that became richer when they turned their fashion business into a $1 billion enterprise. It is not only inspirational, but it is interesting to see how they did it.

                                          Image Source: edans via photopin cc

                                          Featured photo credit: edans via farm7.staticflickr.com

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                                          Jessica Millis

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                                          Last Updated on March 13, 2019

                                          How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

                                          How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

                                          Have you gotten into a rut before? Or are you in a rut right now?

                                          You know you’re in a rut when you run out of ideas and inspiration. I personally see a rut as a productivity vacuum. It might very well be a reason why you aren’t getting results. Even as you spend more time on your work, you can’t seem to get anything constructive done. While I’m normally productive, I get into occasional ruts (especially when I’ve been working back-to-back without rest). During those times, I can spend an entire day in front of the computer and get nothing done. It can be quite frustrating.

                                          Over time, I have tried and found several methods that are helpful to pull me out of a rut. If you experience ruts too, whether as a working professional, a writer, a blogger, a student or other work, you will find these useful. Here are 12 of my personal tips to get out of ruts:

                                          1. Work on the small tasks.

                                          When you are in a rut, tackle it by starting small. Clear away your smaller tasks which have been piling up. Reply to your emails, organize your documents, declutter your work space, and reply to private messages.

                                          Whenever I finish doing that, I generate a positive momentum which I bring forward to my work.

                                          2. Take a break from your work desk.

                                          Get yourself away from your desk and go take a walk. Go to the washroom, walk around the office, go out and get a snack.

                                          Your mind is too bogged down and needs some airing. Sometimes I get new ideas right after I walk away from my computer.

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                                          3. Upgrade yourself

                                          Take the down time to upgrade yourself. Go to a seminar. Read up on new materials (#7). Pick up a new language. Or any of the 42 ways here to improve yourself.

                                          The modern computer uses different typefaces because Steve Jobs dropped in on a calligraphy class back in college. How’s that for inspiration?

                                          4. Talk to a friend.

                                          Talk to someone and get your mind off work for a while.

                                          Talk about anything, from casual chatting to a deep conversation about something you really care about. You will be surprised at how the short encounter can be rejuvenating in its own way.

                                          5. Forget about trying to be perfect.

                                          If you are in a rut, the last thing you want to do is step on your own toes with perfectionist tendencies.

                                          Just start small. Do what you can, at your own pace. Let yourself make mistakes.

                                          Soon, a little trickle of inspiration will come. And then it’ll build up with more trickles. Before you know it, you have a whole stream of ideas.

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                                          6. Paint a vision to work towards.

                                          If you are continuously getting in a rut with your work, maybe there’s no vision inspiring you to move forward.

                                          Think about why you are doing this, and what you are doing it for. What is the end vision in mind?

                                          Make it as vivid as possible. Make sure it’s a vision that inspires you and use that to trigger you to action.

                                          7. Read a book (or blog).

                                          The things we read are like food to our brain. If you are out of ideas, it’s time to feed your brain with great materials.

                                          Here’s a list of 40 books you can start off with. Stock your browser with only the feeds of high quality blogs, such as Lifehack.org, DumbLittleMan, Seth Godin’s Blog, Tim Ferris’ Blog, Zen Habits or The Personal Excellence Blog.

                                          Check out the best selling books; those are generally packed with great wisdom.

                                          8. Have a quick nap.

                                          If you are at home, take a quick nap for about 20-30 minutes. This clears up your mind and gives you a quick boost. Nothing quite like starting off on a fresh start after catching up on sleep.

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                                          9. Remember why you are doing this.

                                          Sometimes we lose sight of why we do what we do, and after a while we become jaded. A quick refresher on why you even started on this project will help.

                                          What were you thinking when you thought of doing this? Retrace your thoughts back to that moment. Recall why you are doing this. Then reconnect with your muse.

                                          10. Find some competition.

                                          Nothing quite like healthy competition to spur us forward. If you are out of ideas, then check up on what people are doing in your space.

                                          Colleagues at work, competitors in the industry, competitors’ products and websites, networking conventions.. you get the drill.

                                          11. Go exercise.

                                          Since you are not making headway at work, might as well spend the time shaping yourself up.

                                          Sometimes we work so much that we neglect our health and fitness. Go jog, swim, cycle, whichever exercise you prefer.

                                          As you improve your physical health, your mental health will improve, too. The different facets of ourselves are all interlinked.

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                                          Here’re 15 Tips to Restart the Exercise Habit (and How to Keep It).

                                          12. Take a good break.

                                          Ruts are usually signs that you have been working too long and too hard. It’s time to get a break.

                                          Beyond the quick tips above, arrange for a 1-day or 2-days of break from your work. Don’t check your (work) emails or do anything work-related. Relax and do your favorite activities. You will return to your work recharged and ready to start.

                                          Contrary to popular belief, the world will not end from taking a break from your work. In fact, you will be much more ready to make an impact after proper rest. My best ideas and inspiration always hit me whenever I’m away from my work.

                                          Take a look at this to learn the importance of rest: The Importance of Scheduling Downtime

                                          More Resources About Getting out of a Rut

                                          Featured photo credit: Joshua Earle via unsplash.com

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