15 Best Entrepreneur Books to Ignite Your Business

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15 Best Entrepreneur Books to Ignite Your Business

For entrepreneurs, continuous learning is essential to growth. Running a business keeps your schedule packed, but it’s crucial to make time for reading and self-education. The best entrepreneurs are voracious readers, knowing that books provide invaluable wisdom and insights to help propel their ventures to new heights.

From modern startup classics to motivational memoirs, business strategy guides to behavioral economics, there are countless phenomenal books that every entrepreneur should dive into. Here we’ve compiled a robust list of 15 best  entrepreneur books that will provide the building blocks for startup success.

The 15 Best Entrepreneur Books for Starters

1. The Lean Startup by Eric Ries – This seminal book revolutionized the way startups are built, providing concrete strategies for continual testing and iteration to launch companies that customers love. Essential reading.

2. Shoe Dog by Phil Knight – An engaging memoir by Nike’s founder that takes you inside the company’s humble beginnings and Knight’s entrepreneurial journey. An inspirational first-hand account.

3. The $100 Startup by Chris Guillebeau – Discover creative microbusiness and side hustle ideas in this practical guide that reveals how to launch low-cost businesses and transition into self-employment.

4. Zero to One by Peter Thiel – Learn how to think big and pursue true innovation from billionaire PayPal founder and venture capitalist Peter Thiel. Unlocks the secrets to developing breakthrough ideas and products.

5. The Hard Thing About Hard Things by Ben Horowitz – A no-holds-barred handbook for building startups, VC Ben Horowitz gets real about the gritty realities and hard decisions entrepreneurs face.

6. The E-Myth Revisited by Michael E. Gerber – Gerber reveals why most small businesses fail and how to create an entrepreneurial venture engineered for long-term success, not just short-term profits.

7. Thinking, Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman – Nobel Prize winner Daniel Kahneman’s insights into decision-making psychology and behavioral economics are indispensable knowledge for entrepreneurs.

8. The Everything Store: Jeff Bezos and the Age of Amazon by Brad Stone – This page-turning account of Amazon’s rise and Jeff Bezos’ entrepreneurial approach makes for a fascinating insider view of the ecommerce giant.

9. The First 90 Days by Michael Watkins – Learn stellar strategies for effectively transitioning into a new leadership role and avoiding common missteps as a first-time CEO or entrepreneur.

10. Girl, Wash Your Face by Rachel Hollis – Blogger, CEO and motivational speaker Rachel Hollis empowers readers to abandon self-doubt, embrace their talents, and lead with authenticity – valuable advice for female entrepreneurs.

11. How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie – Carnegie’s classic book shares timeless advice on improving your relationships and influencing skills – key for entrepreneurial success.

12. The 4-Hour Work Week by Tim Ferriss – Ferriss provides controversial but thought-provoking tactics on working smarter, outsourcing tasks, and creating an automated income stream.

13. Creativity, Inc. by Ed Catmull – The Pixar co-founder unpacks how to build a creative culture of imagination and collaboration within your organization.

14. The compound Effect by Darren Hardy – This motivational book reveals how small, consistent actions completed over time can lead to major entrepreneurial breakthroughs.

15. The Millionaire Fastlane by MJ DeMarco – DeMarco offers an alternative approach to wealth-building through entrepreneurship rather than traditional careers and gradual savings.

While every entrepreneur has unique lessons to impart, these books contain many universal and fundamental truths, strategies, and mindsets to empower your success. Never stop learning!

Key Takeaways for Entrepreneurs

Some core themes entrepreneurs can derive from these book recommendations:

  • Learning is nonstop – Continue educating yourself through books, podcasts, mentors and experiences.
  • Ideas require iteration – Allow your business to evolve based on customer feedback.
  • Embrace failures – Let mistakes and setbacks strengthen you rather than defeat you.
  • Lead authentically – Run your company true to your values and vision.
  • Master decisiveness – Make choices quickly but deliberately.
  • Team matters – Surround yourself with those whose strengths complement your weaknesses.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the 5 best entrepreneur’s books?

Answer: The 5 top books are The Lean Startup, Shoe Dog, The Hard Thing About Hard Things, Zero to One, and The $100 Startup. Each provides invaluable but distinct insights.

Should entrepreneurs read biographies?

Answer: Yes, reading about how iconic entrepreneurs like Steve Jobs, Oprah Winfrey, and Richard Branson built their empires can provide motivation and timeless lessons.

What should young entrepreneurs read?

Answer: Younger entrepreneurs may especially benefit from books like Girl, Wash Your Face, The Lean Startup, and The $100 Startup which focus on mindset, innovation, and creativity.

Do these books apply to non-tech companies?

Answer: Absolutely. While some books focus on tech startups, the business strategies and leadership principles apply universally across industries.

How can audiobooks help entrepreneurs?

Answer: Listening to business books during a commute is a convenient way to absorb information. Audiobooks also suit different learning styles.


The entrepreneurial journey is a rollercoaster full of ups and downs. While exhilarating, it demands resilience when difficulties arise. Immersing yourself in the collective wisdom within these books and applying their lessons can prepare you to effectively lead, innovate, and create a thriving business. Never stop learning!

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