The CEO of a small PR company, BuzzBrightPR in New York, Christina Towle understands what it’s like to be overwhelmed, especially because she’ says she’ll do whatever it takes to keep her clients happy. She understands that entrepreneurs often have “crazy busy schedules” that can quickly lead to burnout if they aren’t equipped to handle the stress. With this book, she feels entrepreneurs will see a quick turnaround in their daily tasks.
“With The Checklist Book I’ve been able to structure each day realistically so that I can feel satisfied once work is done. Now I have more time to focus on what I love to do most—spend time with my son and husband without feeling guilty that I should be working.”
Stefan Palios learned the hard way how challenging it can be to build a business from the ground up. The CEO of PulseBlueprint, which publishes educational content to help people with career and life transitions, suffered business failure at his first entrepreneurial attempt in 2016, partially because he rushed to hire employees before the business was ready. When it came time to start a new business, he read Reinventing Organizations multiple times first and applied its lessons.
“The book reminded me that you can build a system to help you compensate for a lack of full-time employees.” He followed that advice. “I looked at how I could accomplish 80% of the things I needed to do with 20% of my effort, leveraging technology to do the rest,” Palios says.
This included automatic invoicing and bill payments, Trello for project and task management and coaches and advisors to fill tactical gaps.
“Had I not picked up Reinventing Organizations, I might still be scratching my head, on my second business failure, wondering why the world was forsaking me when I thought I was doing it ‘right’ by trying to hire employees as early as possible.”
3. The One Thing by Gary Keller
Jaclyn DiGregoria, a motivational speaker, author, and coach in Pennsylvania was inspired to hone her focus after reading The One Thing.
“Naturally, as visionaries, entrepreneurs are filled with so many ideas. Yet Keller’s teachings encourage readers to hone in and focus on just one,” she says.
While she acknowledges that this can be difficult for the often idea-heavy entrepreneur, she believes that following its central lesson can be “groundbreaking” for entrepreneurs who are overwhelmed with ideas.
“My business skyrocketed after reading this book because I had immense focus on where I was going.”
4. How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie
Jason Harriman, CEO of a short-term rental company called STĀ Here, in Texas, takes wisdom from an 85-year-old book that he feels is still relevant today.
He holds to Carnegie’s idea that communication is most effective when it’s face to face over texting, emailing or even phone calls. By communicating directly, with eye contact, a smile and open body language, Harriman says, “You will feel better about your pitch/service/business.” He says people value “Being a good listener, putting others’ needs before yours and respecting the opinions of others will build trust. When there is trust, it makes it far easier for money to exchange hands.”
Bonus, he says, is that this success may spill over into your personal life.
5. Guerilla Marketing by Jay Conrad Levinson
Alicia Harper, Program Director for Hylee Training, a horse riding stable in Prince George, British Columbia, says this marketing book was invaluable to her business.
She says the book’s marketing strategies are accessible and practical for businesses that don’t have much money to spend on marketing. One of the first pieces of advice she took fifteen years ago was to put up flyers offering something for free for her business at other local businesses. “We immediately had people talking about us and referrals started coming in right away.”
Additionally, she learned that she could garner free research from her customers simply by asking them questions on social media. She did so in a Facebook group to find out what was missing from her market. “We had quite a few people respond and it was fairly accurate.”