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Start-Ups

5 Business Books That Will Change the Way You Think

By Townes Haas   |    October 29, 2015   |    11:42 AM

Some of the Best Business Strategy Books for Entrepreneurs

As an entrepreneur you already understand the importance of sparking your creativity while continuously striving to learn more about the business world. Your business success depends on a finely-tuned mind, after all. Many entrepreneurs and businesspeople have written books on their business methods, and they’re readily available for you to learn from. If you’re in the mood for some inspiring, actionable reading material, here are five of the best business strategy books that you should add to your library. You may have already read one or two, but there just might be a new book that piques your interest!

Leadership BS: Fixing Workplaces and Careers One Truth at a Time, by Jeffrey Pfeffer

If you follow the business-book world, you may have heard of Pfeffer’s other bestselling book, Power. In his newest book, Leadership BS, the Stanford business school professor dives into the leadership industry to show readers how to make their workplaces and careers better. Employers are facing employee disengagement and high turnover at all levels, and Pfeffer’s book uses evidence-based social science to help readers improve management and their overall careers.

Misbehaving: The Making of Behavioral Economics, by Richard H. Thaler

If you’ve ever read an economics book and thought, “That’s not how the real world works!” you’ll love Richard H. Thaler’s (occasionally comical) new book, Misbehaving. Traditional economics assume that humans make rational decisions, and Thaler realized that notion couldn’t be more incorrect. He dissects recent discoveries in human psychology, educates readers about market behavior, and shows them how to make smarter choices. After finishing this book you’ll look at your business and personal choices in a whole new light.

Superforecasting: The Art and Science of Prediction, by Philip E. Tetlock

Philip Tetlock is a professor at Wharton and he knows a thing or two about making predictions. He also knows that, as humans, we generally aren’t very accurate in our forecasts. Tetlock completed a groundbreaking twenty-year study and he found that the average expert’s predictions were only slightly more accurate than the predictions of someone using random guesswork. However, he also discovered people who were able to predict the future with 60% greater accuracy than average. He calls them superforecasters. Their methods have been studied and analyzed, and now entrepreneurs can learn how to use these skills in their own businesses and lives.

The Lean Startup: How Today's Entrepreneurs Use Continuous Innovation to Create Radically Successful Businesses, by Eric Reis

If you’ve been looking for a business book full of practical advice, then start reading Eric Reis’s The Lean Startup. Reis believes that so many entrepreneurs fail because they don’t follow traditional business practices, instead relying on “vanity metrics.” In this book he reviews a five step approach for entrepreneurs, and he’s taken his “tricks” from lean manufacturing principles. After reading this book, you’ll surely want to test some of his theories.

Outliers: The Story of Success, by Malcolm Gladwell

Malcolm Gladwell is well-known for his insightful business books, including favorites like Blink: The Power of Thinking Without Thinking. In Outliers, Gladwell analyzes success in an entirely new way. After studying highly successful people he’s reached the conclusion that it takes 10,000 hours of practice (from a young age) to become good at something. Additionally, factors like IQ, emotional intelligence, cultural context, and more all play a large role in determining how successful a person becomes. Even if you haven’t been honing your craft since childhood you’ll surely gain new insights from Gladwell’s comprehensive look into the makings of success.


This list barely scratches the surface of business books that will change the way you think. Do you have any favorite business books? Share them with other readers in the comments!