Must-Read Business Books for 2014

I know of people who have earned business degrees and figured that’s about the extent of education they need to run a successful business. Always an avid reader, I have learned much more from books and lectures outside of formal education than I have from the degree courses I have completed. You see, formal studies involve theories and ideas. That’s why I much prefer practical learning from books written by people who have made a difference; people who have made a success.

Some people say that they don’t have time to read, but I see reading as an essential part of growing as a person – reaching my potential. If that’s important to you, you can think about these ways to learn from books:

  • Get an e-reader and read on the bus.
  • Buy audio copies to listen to during your day-to-day life.
  • Get up 30 minutes earlier to read.
  • Read during lunchtime instead of gossiping with your staff. (Better yet, start an in-office book club!)

I think you get my point!

I’d like to share my top business books of all time with you:


Guerilla Marketing (1984), by Jay Conrad Levinson

This book offers amazing insight into out-of-the-box marketing and engagement. It’s a great asset if you want to boost your business by taking your marketing viral.

The One Minute Manager (1982), by Kenneth Blanchard and Spencer Johnson

This no-nonsense guide explains to you exactly why people do what they do and the theories are backed by research and scientific studies.

The 7 Habits Of Highly Effective People (1989), by Stephen R. Covey

You can’t develop a business if you don’t develop yourself into the best person you can be. This is one of the most successful books of all times. It discusses the habits and attitudes of people who win.

The Human Side of Enterprise (1960), by Douglas McGregor

In business you work with people all the time. This is a must-read for everyone, especially those of us who employ people. It will help you to goad your employees to become motivated parts of the organisation, instead of employees wishing the day would end so that they can go home.

How to Win Friends and Influence People (1936), by Dale Carnegie

One of the best motivational books ever, this best-seller is a great reminder that we need people in our lives. We need to win friends in business and in life and this book shows you how.

Crucial Conversations: Tools for Talking When Stakes Are High, by Kerry Patterson, Joseph Grenny, Ron McMillan, & Al Switzler

This is one of those books where you’ll feel you pretty much know the basics already, but it’s not so familiar that you want to miss reaading it anyway. It provides a great reference of tactics you can use to deal with conversational issues – your own and those of other people.

The 4-Hour Workweek: Escape 9-5, Live Anywhere, and Join the New Rich, by Timothy Ferriss

This book created a buzz when it was published in 2007. Who wouldn’t want to work 4 hours a week? If you want to work less and live more, you can’t go wrong getting your hands on this book.

The Millionaire Next Door: Surprising Secrets of America’s Wealthy, by Thomas J. Stanley and William D. Danko

This insightful look into the lives of millionaires is a true eye-opener. If you thought that all wealthy people live lives full of glitz and glam, or that they were born privileged, think again. Hopefully it will inspire you to roll up your sleeves and see that you too, can live an ordinary, but very comfortable life when you apply a bit of hard work.

Linchpin: Are You Indispensable? by Seth Godin

If you have done any online reading or blogging, you probably know who Seth Godin is. He is the current guru of online marketing and motivation. In this book, he teaches us ordinary folk how to become extraordinary and indispensable.

Think and Grow Rich, by Napoleon Hill

My favourite business book of all time, this best-seller has influenced my life in such a powerful way. It was first published in 1937, but it’s a timeless classic that still sells many copies today. Think and Grow Rich talks a lot about positive thinking and how it influences us in life and in business.

The Desire Map, by Danielle LaPorte

Entrepreneur, social media sensation, and inspirational speaker Danielle talks about the aspiring, hoping, plotting, recurring, reaching, bubbling beneath the surface and craving that comes with achieving dreams and finding clarity on how we actually want our lives to be before laying out our intentions.

Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook: How to Tell Your Story in a Noisy Social World, by Gary Vaynerchuk

New York Times bestselling author and social media expert Gary Vaynerchuk shares hard-won advice on how to connect with customers and beat the competition. Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook is a blueprint to social media marketing strategies that really works.

Money, A Love Story: Untangle Your Financial Woes and Create the Life You Really Want, by Kate Northrup

Having a good relationship with money is tough – whether you have millions in the bank or just a few bucks to your name. Why? Because just like any other relationship, your life with money has its ups and downs, its twists and turns, its breakups and makeups. And just like other relationships, living happily with money really comes down to love, which is why love is the basis of Kate’s latest book.

The Suitcase Entrepreneur, by Natalie Sisson

Everybody has the right to build a business from anywhere and design a lifestyle they love. That’s what this book will teach you to do. If you’ve always thought that having the freedom to do what you want when you want was just a pipe dream, then think again.

The $100 Startup: Reinvent the Way You Make a Living, Do What You Love and Create a New Future, by Chris Guillebeau

Chris Guillebeau shows you how to lead of life of adventure, meaning and purpose – and earn a good living. Still in his early thirties, Chris is on the verge of completing a tour of every country on earth – he’s already visited more than 175 nations – and yet he’s never held a “real job” or earned a regular paycheck.  Rather, he has a special genius for turning ideas into income, and he uses what he earns both to support his life of adventure and to give back.

I hope these quick reviews have inspired you to go visit the library or – better yet – the bookstore. These are books you will want to read over and over again and refer back to from time to time. Books are a great investment in knowledge and skills. Don’t waste the opportunity to read.

What’s your favourite book of all time? Please share with us on Facebook!

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