Books are special because they have the power to help us change so many aspects of our lives, their pages full of inspiration. Thanks to the stories we read, we know we aren’t alone in our doubts, fears, and limitations. That provides us with a level of comfort and peace of mind—and lots of motivation.
We asked members of the Young Entrepreneur Council which books they’ve read and reread because that’s just how much staying power the words have. Here are those 13 books, the ones that can help you find success in your life, too.
1. The 46 Rules of Genius
An Innovator’s Guide to Creativity (Voices That Matter)
By Marty Neumeier
The 46 Rules of Genius inspires me to set a very high bar—above the status quo—for the function and purpose of our business.
—Christopher Kelly, Convene
2. The Traveler’s Gift
Seven Decisions That Determine Personal Success
By Andy Andrews
My favorite book is The Traveler’s Gift. It helped me establish the right attitude when facing stress and coping with negativity.
—Kevin Xu, Mebo International
3. Give and Take
Why Helping Others Drives Our Success
By Adam M. Grant
Give and Take by Wharton professor Adam Grant is a must-read for everyone. The way Grant identifies the three types of people in life—givers, takers and matchers—helps provide an introspective look at one’s own life. It also helps reprioritize the type of people we want to spend time with in work, life or play.
—Jeff Slobotski, Router Ventures
4. The Code of the Extraordinary Mind
10 Unconventional Laws to Redefine Your Life and Succeed on Your Own Terms
By Vishen Lakhiani
This book by Vishen Lakhiani of Mindvalley was one of the best books I’ve read on personal development. I’m a total geek for this stuff and was super-impressed by the way he systematically breaks down the actions someone can take to live a life of fulfillment and success.
—Mark Krassner, Expectful
5. How to Have a Good Day
Harness the Power of Behavioral Science to Transform Your Working Life
By Caroline Webb
How to Have a Good Day is an excellent read. The author is the CEO of a consulting firm and a former partner at McKinsey. This book covers her career best practices that she’s learned throughout a 16-year consulting career. It’s full of productive advice on everything from how to have fruitful meetings to how to deal with an annoying co-worker.
—Nicole Munoz, Start Ranking Now
6. SPIN Selling
By Neil Rackham
SPIN Selling is a great book for anyone because it teaches you about the psychology of a sale and what motivates people to buy. The actual principles are easy to understand in theory, but practicing them day in and day out is difficult. It is based on the premise that if your customer needs your product then they will buy it. This book teaches you how to get the customer to understand that need.
—Jayna Cooke, EVENTup
7. Double Double
How to Double Your Revenue and Profit in 3 Years or Less
By Cameron Herold
Cameron Herold, coach to the world’s top CEOs, wrote Double Double, which is filled with practical tips and wake-up calls galore. I have all my senior managers reading this book, and we are seeing instant results in productivity, as well as an overall shift in how we make key decisions.
—Diana Goodwin, AquaMobile
8. The Ultimate Sales Machine
Turbocharge Your Business with Relentless Focus on 12 Key Strategies
By Chet Holmes
If you never read another business book, read this one. From advice on being more productive to scaling your sales and hiring great staff, this book is filled with killer strategies for all parts of your business and life. This one is definitely in my top five best books of all time.
—Kim Walsh-Phillips, Elite Digital Group
9. Habit Stacking
97 Small Life Changes That Take Five Minutes or Less
By S.J. Scott
This book helped me understand how certain habits can transform your personal and professional life. I’ve already used many of the ideas and believe they’ve contributed to my success this year.
—Cynthia Johnson, Ipseity Media
10. The 4-Hour Workweek
Escape 9-5, Live Anywhere, and Join the New Rich
By Timothy Ferriss
This is an oldie but goodie. The 4-Hour Workweek is inspirational and its core principles are still applicable. Whether you’re building a “lifestyle business” or a more traditional business, there are valuable takeaways.
—Ismael Wrixen, FE International
The Life and Times of a Messianic Billionaire
By Michael T. Kaufman
Michael T. Kaufman’s biography of Soros is endlessly fascinating beyond his success as a speculator. From a youth in Nazi-occupied Hungary to U.S. political activism in the 21st century, Kaufman explains the worldview and life experiences that led Soros to where he is today.
—Richard Kershaw, WhoIsHostingThis.com
12. The E-Myth Revisited
Why Most Small Businesses Don’t Work and What to Do About It
By Michael E. Gerber
This book is probably one of the best books of all time about setting up a business for success. Its takeaway is about not working in the business but on the business. It’s pretty simple: Set your business up for success from the beginning. People do what you inspect, not what you expect. This book will give you the inside advantage about what it takes to obtain that goal.
—Hillary Hobson, Highest Cash Offer
13. How to Be a Power Connector
The 5+50+100 Rule for Turning Your Business Network into Profits
By Judy Robinett
How to Be a Power Connector taught me how to always aim to add value and about what real networking is. Networking isn’t just about asking for help or favors; it’s about building relationships and really trying to add value to your network. Your network is only as good as the value that exists within it.
—Daniel Rounds, Daniel Rounds