7 books every start-up founder should read
One of the best ways to learn is through reading more books. Start-up founders are often time-strapped and might not have the luxury to sieve through the ocean of start-up books for the right ones. BLOCK71 Singapore has compiled a list of 7 start-up books that come highly recommended by entrepreneurs. Take a look and start hitting the library or your Kindle!
1. Grit by Angela Duckworth
To be successful, one cannot does not simply rely on talent. There is a quality which is a key ingredient for success. That quality is called “grit,” an essential trait for every entrepreneur, according to Duckworth. For anyone looking to “make it”, be it parents students, educators, athletes, or business people, they need to have grit — a unique blend of persistence and passion.
2. Zero to One by Peter Thiel and Blake Masters
In Zero to One, investor and entrepreneur Peter Thiel shows how entrepreneurs can discover new methods of thinking about innovation: by learning to ask the right questions that will guide you to find value in unexpected places. The book is a summarised and updated version of a very popular set of online notes written by Blake Masters for a class on startups taught by Thiel at Stanford University and comes recommended by the Economist and entrepreneurs like Mark Zuckerberg and Elon Musk.
3. Superbosses by Sydney Finkelstein
One of the key factors in ensuring the success of a start-up is having great management and talent. Superbosses, managers who cultivate new talent, promote risk-taking and spur growth for their companies, entice highly skilled employees and also propel their careers. Sydney Finkelstein distilled the elements of a superboss after more than ten years of research and two hundred interviews with titans in a range of industries to determine what makes them tick.
4. Sprint: How to Solve Big Problems and Test New Ideas in Just Five Days, by Jake Knapp, John Zeratsky, and Braden Kowitz
Digital and tech entrepreneurs sometimes face a lot of difficulty in deciding what to focus on and how to make an idea work in real life. This book, written by three partners at Google Ventures, get its name from a five-day process (Sprint) which Jake designed during his time at Google for piloting new ideas, prior to his move to Google ventures. Through this method, problems are segmented into a step-by-step approach which makes it easier for tech start-ups to deal with them speedily.
5. The Lean Startup: How Today’s Entrepreneurs Use Continuous Innovation to Create Radically Successful Businesses by Eric Ries
Author Eric Ries talks about the lean startup approach, which has shaped how many startup founders expand their startups and launch new products . The approach is heavily centered around the principle of the quick validation of ideas prior to ramping up investment in it. The Lean Startup provides entrepreneurs a way to validate business ideas continuously as well as to adapt and tweak them before something goes wrong. Besides giving a fresh method to run a successful startup, the book also brings up a couple of innovative online business tools that can speed up the process of validation for entrepreneurs.
6. How to Win Friends & Influence People by Dale Carnegie
Despite being published for more than seventy years, the lessons of this leadership classic remain relevant in today’s context. The book teaches readers strategies on how to manage relationships more effectively, cultivate friendships and persuade people to go along with your train of thought and in doing so, how to become a better leader and manager. This guide on how to get along with people posits that you have to be sincerely pleasant to them and take an interest in their lives.
7. Built to Last: Successful Habits of Visionary Companies by Jim Collins and Jerry I. Porras
Visionary companies are composed of many folks who come and go; some of them are innovative and extremely talented leaders. Although these companies are gradually depleted of their top talent, they can still retain their vision and excel.
Tapping on his experience earned from a six-year research project at Stanford University Graduate School of Business, the author examines 18 meteorically successful companies and analyses them in comparison to their chief competitors. By trying to determine the special ingredient that made these specific companies successful, the authors dispelled several commonplace success myths.
Are you an entrepreneur working on a cool product and looking for more than just a co-working space ? Do apply for a hotdesk here and become part of the exciting community that we offer at BLOCK71 Singapore.
For more great entrepreneur themed articles delivered weekly to your inbox, subscribe to the BLOCK71 newsletter here!