The 10 best books for entrepreneurs starting a business — download them today!

Jane Cowell

29 April, 2022

Whether you’re just starting a business or are a veteran entrepreneur, startup books are one of the many ways to get inspiration and stay motivated. If you think you’re in over your head, or are just plain curious about what others have been through, these books are a great resource full of entrepreneur advice, strategies, and inspiration. There are so many options to choose from, though, that selecting just a few to check out from your local library can become an overwhelming task in itself. And finding the time to get to the physical library can also be a challenge.

But you do not have to stress: you can Return Yourself to the Library with our YPRL digital library! Here are the 10 best books for entrepreneurs starting a business — they are all available with your library card. With a couple of mouse clicks, the book is delivered directly to your device. Download the Libby App or BorrowBox App and get your startup thinking started.

Grit: The power of passion and perseverance by Angela Duckworth, 2016
Everyone is always looking for ways to succeed and for Duckworth, an author and scientist, the answer to success is grit. Grit is a combination of passion and perseverance. Not only do you have to have a dedication to something, but you also have to have the drive to see it through. Duckworth debunks the myth that talent is everything, and she instead emphasises the value of grit by using numerous success stories and including analysis to estimate your own level of grit. Do you have what it takes? Read and find out.

Blue Ocean Strategy: How to Create Uncontested Market Space and Make the Competition Irrelevant by W. Chan Kim, 2020
In this perennial bestseller, embraced by organisations and industries worldwide, globally preeminent management thinkers W. Chan Kim and Renee Mauborgne challenge everything you thought you knew about the requirements for strategic success.

The 4-Hour Work Week by Tim Ferriss, 2017
While the title might feel clickbaity, the content inside isn’t. The 4-Hour Work Week outlines techniques for how you can work less, make more, and build the life you want instead of living the life you’ve been handed. Some entrepreneurs want to start their own businesses to get rich. Others do it to gain more everyday freedom. And some people just want to do whatever it takes to live a fulfilling life. Tim Ferriss shares all the hacks and tools you need to do more with less.

How to think like Steve Jobs by Daniel Smith, 2014
How to Think Like Steve Jobs reveals the philosophies and carefully honed skills Jobs used in his journey to the top and in the consolidation of Apple's unique place in the public consciousness. With his thoughts on innovation, how to find inspiration, presenting an idea, advertising and much more, you can learn how to view the world through the eyes of a genius and help you position your own business idea for success.

The Lean Startup: How constant innovation creates radically successful businesses by Eric Ries, 2011

The Lean Startup by Eric Ries is a number one bestseller on Amazon for a reason and if you have not read it yet, it is time. This book not only covers how to operate your new startup but how to do it with minimal resources. Most startups don’t start out with tons of extra capital and that’s where this book comes into play. The big lessons you’ll walk away with from The Lean Startup are how to use capital efficiently and leverage human creativity while on a budget, making it one of the best business startup books on the market. With those two lessons in your back pocket, you’ll have your startup humming along in no time.

Crushing it: How Great Entrepreneurs Build Their Business and Influence—and How You Can, Too by Gary Vaynerchuk, 2018
Gary Vaynerchuk is one of the world’s leading marketing experts and regular New York Times bestselling author. If you want to grow your online influence or profit from an online business, Gary Vaynerchuk deserves your undivided attention. In Crushing It he is one part inspiration, one part strategy, and one part tactics, so if your business is online or you need an influential online brand/influence then this is the book for you.

Deep Work: The Ultimate Guide to Staying Focused in a Noisy World by Cal R. Proby and Thorben Newport, 2020
Author and professor Cal Newton defines ‘Deep Work’ as the ability to focus without distraction on a cognitively demanding task for extended periods of time. And it’s a skill that’s becoming rare, just as it’s becoming more valuable.
While most people are frittering away their valuable time in a frantic blur of shallow tasks — like email and social media — the most successful people are focusing their attention on the tasks that truly matter. The book is divided into 2 parts. The first sets out the why a deep work ethic will produce monumental results in almost any profession. In the second, Newport presents four detailed ‘rules’ for transforming your mind and habits to develop the ability to ‘go deep.’
In an increasingly distracting world, the ability to go deep will put you miles ahead of the competition. And, this business book will show you how.

The Purple Cow: Transform Your Business by Being Remarkable by Seth Godin, 2005
This book for entrepreneurs explains how, in the modern market, your business is either remarkable or invisible. And in it, you’ll learn why safe is dangerous, and why very good is actually bad. To thrive, every new entrepreneur needs to understand how to stand out from their competition. This book will show you how and it is a classic for a reason.

Zero to One by Peter Thiel, 2014

Zero To One is about how to turn a startup idea into a valuable business. While much of the advice is geared towards wildly ambitious startups, many of the insights can be applied to smaller, niche-based startups or even small businesses. The book is an inspirational read for anyone interested in building a more valuable company. Recommended by such entrepreneurs as Mark Zuckerberg and Elon Musk, Zero to One will challenge the way you think and force you to answer questions that will help push your startup forward. Download it to your device today.

The Path Made Clear: Discovering Your Life's Direction and Purpose by Oprah Winfrey, 2019
And if you are still unsure of your business path then Oprah Winfrey’s The Path Made Clear is just where you start. Oprah shares personal stories and wisdom from her own life as well as the lives of many other successful people who also found their true calling. Her guide aims to help you build a framework for a life of success and significance.

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