Best Books for Starting a Business

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By Jacob Maslow

  • 20% of businesses fail within their first year in the U.S.
  • Acquiring knowledge is essential for business success

Gain critical knowledge to ensure success with the best books for starting a business.

Figures from the Bureau of Labor show that 20% of businesses (one in five) fail within their first year in the U.S. Starting a business requires more than an idea and capital to ensure success. Acquiring the proper knowledge will ensure that your business thrives.

There are a lot of useful online guides on how to start and administer a new business successfully, but preparing yourself to start a business should begin with some knowledge acquired by doing some serious reading.

The greatest books for starting a business have helpful information and get excellent reviews. If you are still not sure which one is ideal for you, here are some of the best book business guides to equip you with everything you need to know about starting a business:

1.      The Young Entrepreneurs Guide to Starting and Running a Business, written by Steve Mariotti

For thousands of people who have used the Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship (NFTE), Steve Mariotti is the person who provides them with information for starting a small business through his non-profit.

With The Young Entrepreneurs Guide to Starting and Running a Business, Mariotti provides a book filled with advice on how to turn your ideas into money in an easy and fun way. He also provides examples and inspirational words.

2.      Zero to One, written by Peter Thiel

Small solo businesses often have a greater success rate than startups because these have extra starting costs and the burden of managing employees and investors.

In Zero to One, Peter Thiel, PayPal cofounder, gives startups advice on how to avoid the upheavals that often lead to company failures. Along with his co-author, Blake Masters, Thiel outlines several examples of the importance of innovation in business today and how startups can avoid triggering threats in the form of disruptions. As a very successful investor in tech, Thiel’s advice on the dos and don’ts of startups and its insights may prove invaluable to your startup.

3.      Mind Your Business, written by Ilana Griffo

Mind Your Business is the ideal book for those with a creative talent (art, cooking, sewing, etc.) that want to turn it from a side hustle to a full-time business idea. Besides advising you on monetizing your passion, the author provides helpful information on managing and marketing your business. In this quick read with an attractive design, you can find legal guidelines on protecting your assets and the best way to budget as you take your side hustle into a money-spinning career.

4.      How to Start a Business – Quick Start Guide written by Ken Colwell

How to Start a Business provides an excellent guide for anyone looking to start a business. The book focuses on the basics of starting a business. It also includes how to develop the mindset of a succesful entrepreneur.

Ken Cowell then continues with all the essential aspects of starting a business, including a step-by-step guide to drawing up a business plan. As you read about how to turn your idea into reality, the author also provides access to other valuable digital resources to make everything easier. These include financial and pitching templates and other startup tools.

5.      Profit First, Written by Mike Michalowicz

One of most new business owners’ most significant challenges is managing their financial side. As an entrepreneur, you want your business to make money, but very few know how to use that money to grow the business once it starts coming in.

You will learn from Profit First how to increase profitability at every business life cycle. The author also addresses how to avoid common cash flow problems many new entrepreneurs face. Even if you aren’t an accountant, Michalowizcz’s simple formula makes it easy to understand the financials of your business from the outset.

6.      Starting a Business All-in-One, Written by Eric Tyson and Bob Nelson

In 656 pages, Tyson and Nelson’s Starting a Business All-In-One provides a comprehensive guide on starting a business. These successful authors cover every aspect of starting a business, including its management, marketing, accounting, franchise management, etc. They also provide valuable resources in each section that helps you practice and learn everything about starting a lucrative venture. So even if you find it hard to finish the book in a few sittings, it will make a helpful guide as you grow your company.

7.      Start With Why, Written by Simon Sinek

As you start a business, it’s crucial to ensure that you scale it to success. However, it’s often hard for entrepreneurs to sustain that feeling of inspiration as they try to start and manage their new businesses. Simon Sinek has looked for ways to help inspire you from real-life examples like Steve Jobs, Martin Luther King Jr., and others who remained rooted in “why” as they found success. You can follow the same process with the Golden Circle outlined in Sinek’s Start with Why.

8.      Good To Great, Written by Jim Collins

Good to Great by Jim Collins is perfect if you want practical advice for building a thriving business. With over 3 million copies sold, this best seller delves into how some of the best companies created their success that lasted for more than 15 years. As you learn about the importance of a disciplined culture and level 5 leaders, you will find loads of advice to help you as you move toward starting your business.

Final Take

Besides buying the right business book to help you start a business, you need to read it and implement the knowledge. The book you choose must provide the proper knowledge for your experience level so that it’s easy to read and understand. On the other hand, you should also not buy a book for seasoned entrepreneurs because the information won’t assist you at this point. Some books are longer than others, but always make sure to gain as much insight from them as possible to arm yourself with the knowledge to take your business to a whole new level.


What are the best books to read when starting a business?

Aside from the above, 8 great books to read when starting a business are: “The Lean Startup” by Eric Ries, “Rework” by Jason Fried and David Heinemeier Hansson, “The Entrepreneur Roller Coaster” by Darren Hardy, “Crush It!” by Gary Vaynerchuk, “Startup: An Insider’s Guide to Launching and Running a Business” By Ken Cowell, “Profit First” Written by Mike Michalowicz, “Starting a Business All-in-One” Written by Eric Tyson and Bob Nelson,”Start With Why”, Written by Simon Sinek and “ Good To Great” Written by Jim Collins.

What are the key takeaways from these business books?

The key takeaways from these business books include understanding how to create and maintain a successful startup, learning how to effectively manage money, setting realistic goals, creating a culture of discipline and innovation, utilizing digital marketing strategies to reach customers faster and better, developing a “why” for your business based on real-life examples of success and focusing on practical advice for building a thriving business.

How can I get the most out of reading these business books?

To get the most out of reading these business books, it is essential to ensure that the book you choose provides proper knowledge for your experience level, read the book and implement the knowledge you obtained, and gain as much insight from them as possible. Additionally, taking notes and discussing the concepts with other people interested in starting a business can be beneficial. This will help solidify your understanding of the material so that you can apply it when starting and managing your own business.

What additional resources are available for someone who is just starting a business?

In addition to reading these books about starting a business, many other valuable resources are available for entrepreneurs. These include online courses and tutorials, podcasts, webinars, articles written by industry experts, eBooks, conferences, and workshops from leading professionals in their fields. Additionally, many business associations, accelerators, and incubators can provide entrepreneurs with advice and guidance. Finding a mentor or coach who can help you navigate the startup process more effectively is also beneficial.

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