In today’s fast-paced world, taking the time to read a book from cover to cover can feel downright self-indulgent. After all, there’s a hundred other things you could or should be doing to further your business interests and goals—right? Wrong! As honest Abe, the subject of the first book on my list below would tell you, sometimes reading is the best use of your time as a business leader. If you’re looking to hone your leadership skills, check out my top three picks for business owners and entrepreneurs.
- Lincoln on Leadership: Executive Strategies for Tough Times, by Donald T. Phillips. Abraham Lincoln is considered one of the greatest leaders of all time. However, only ten days before Lincoln took the oath of office in 1861, the Confederate States of America seceded from the Union, taking all Federal agencies, forts, and arenas within their territory. To make matters worse, Lincoln, who was elected by a minority of the popular vote, was thought of by his own advisors as nothing more than a gawky second-rate country lawyer with no leadership experience. This book details how Lincoln was able to galvanize the country, under the direst of circumstances, to ultimately save the union. His timeless leadership skills continue to serve as a lesson to leaders across all walks of life.
- How to Win Friends & Influence People, by Dale Carnegie, is a must-read for business leaders at any stage of their careers. In today’s digital age when people are connecting less in person, Carnegie’s lessons are more vital than ever. As the book’s Amazon review notes, “his rock-solid, time-tested advice has carried countless people up the ladder of success in their business and personal lives.” For business leaders and entrepreneurs, Carnegie’s book is both groundbreaking and ageless. His lessons on six ways to make people like you, twelve ways to win people to your way of thinking, and nine ways to change people without arousing resentment are as relevant today as when the book was originally published in 1981.
- The E-Myth Revisited: Why Most Small Businesses Don't Work and What to Do About It, by Michael E. Gerber, is time well spent for those seeking to build a business from the ground up. Gerber pours his years of experience as a business consultant into discussions about what business models work and why, the secrets of developing a small enterprise, and why the founder is key to the business’ ultimate success. It also provides valuable tips for organizing, developing, and improving your business and how to go from indispensable to dispensable by working on your business versus in your business.
Investment advice offered through Planned Financial Services, a Registered Investment Advisor.