Books for your business and career

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A blog with no content isn’t much use so I thought a good first post would be to point you to some great content–some of the books I’ve read that have shaped the way I think about business.

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Harvard Business Review on Managing Yourself

This book is a compilation of advice from business leaders on how to manage your life and career. I found it to be a great read as having been in the business world for a while it caused me to take a step back and reevaluate where I was and where I wanted to go.

Entrepreneur's Toolkit cover

Entrepreneur’s Toolkit: Tools and Techniques to Launch and Grow Your New Business

A comprehensive guide to starting a business which covers everything from identifying an opportunity to finding financing to growth. The business plan (I know there are questions about them in some circles) section is quick and no nonsense.

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Buffett: The Making of an American Capitalist

This biography of Warren Buffett provides a look at his background and some of the lessons he has learned to get where he is today. Some of those lessons are as applicable to business owners as they are to investors.

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A Sense of Urgency

My biggest takeaway from this book was that we create a false sense of urgency in business. We get so bogged down with “important” emails that we cannot fully focus on the bigger projects that actually build the business. I ended up turning off the new email notifications in Outlook and trying to spend some time on a project before responding to emails in the morning. Still a struggle at times.

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Founders at Work

The stories in this book are definitely more focused on Internet startups but many of them have insights into problems that all businesses have such as hiring, operations, growth, etc. This definitely can be used as a source of motivation during challenging times.

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The Intelligent Investor

I included the Intelligent Investor on this list as while part of being an entrepreneur is to take risks you still like to have a safety net for your family and future. Benjamin Graham eschews trading in favor of fundamental investing which many might consider a wise move for your retirement account.

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The Interpretation of Financial Statements

Every business owner should be able to read a balance sheet and profit and loss statement. Needs to be able to. It helps you look at your business as a business. You can’t know where you’re going if you don’t know where you stand.

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A quick read (most chapters are only a page or two) that will get you moving forward on your business before you even put it down. Includes a lot of no-nonsense advice. Stop having meetings and start creating.

(You can download their previous book, Getting Real, for free.)

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