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19 Instructional Books On Starting A Business

Learn which are the real steps to take to start a business.

Let’s cut to the chase, you want to start a business. Be it for whatever reason: You’re sick and tired of having to report to someone and want to be your own boss. Working a service job and dealing with the inanity of people is draining you. There are way bigger profits awaiting, etc. The reasons are endless.

Now once you’ve decided that, you pause and really start asking yourself for the first time: “so, what now?” And here’s where many people get stuck, and chances are you are one of those people. Fret not, there’s a definitive answer to that question, and what better source to learn it that from people that have been through it already and wrote about it? Check out the best books about starting your own business.

#1 The New Startup by David Pike

The New Startup by David Pike
A must read for every aspiring entrepreneur. Refreshingly concise and exceptionally clear.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

Read more reviews and buy the book here (Amazon)

Search for the audiobook here (Audible)

#2 Zero to One By Peter Thiel with Blake Masters

Zero to One By Peter Thiel with Blake Masters
Throughout the book, Peter Thiel (PayPal Founder and the first institutional investor in Facebook), lays out several major thesis about the world of start-ups.

The first thesis is that there’s an important difference between developing truly innovative technologies and simply spreading existing technologies into new markets(which he calls globalization). Using examples like Tesla and Google, Thiel’s framework helps entrepreneurs navigate towards true innovation instead of creating another Uber for X.

One of the most interesting sections of the book is Thiel’s discussion of the profit-destroying power of competition and why novel innovations help create abundance for both corporations and customers long term. Finally, Thiel is not a fan of disruption, suggesting that it often distracts from innovating and earns start-ups unwanted attention from competitors and industry leaders.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

Read more reviews and buy the book here (Amazon)

Search for the audiobook here (Audible)

#3 Start It, Grow It, Sell It by Lou D. Banach

Start It, Grow It, Sell It by Lou D. Banach
The book follows a fictitious couple from the process of picking a business all the way through writing a business plan, obtaining financing and getting it up and running.. It also follows the couple as they learn the Biz Fab Five™and other important business literacy topics. It follows the couple, in a business novel format, through operating and, ultimately, preparing to sell the business.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

Read more reviews and buy the book here (Amazon)

Search for the audiobook here (Audible)

#4 The Slicing Pie Handbook by Mike Moyer

The Slicing Pie Handbook by Mike Moyer
Sweat Equity is a major component of new venture financing, but the vast majority of founders make potentially devastating mistakes when splitting equity–even those who listened to smart, educated, well-meaning advisors. The Slicing Pie Handbook outlines the only fair way to split equity in an early-stage, bootstrapped company.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

Read more reviews and buy the book here (Amazon)

Search for the audiobook here (Audible)

#5 The Art of the Start 2.0 by Guy Kawasaki

The Art of the Start 2.0 by Guy Kawasaki
The Art of the Start 2.0 is an essential book for an aspiring entrepreneur. The book demonstrates to the reader how to build a new business in the modern world of social media and a constantly evolving Internet. The book points out that the fundamentals of starting a business have not changed such as building a strong team, creating an awesome product or service, and learning how to outmaneuver competitors. The book guides a reader how these fundamental concepts of starting a new business can still be applied to the entrepreneur that is just starting out even despite all the changes in technology.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

Read more reviews and buy the book here (Amazon)

Search for the audiobook here (Audible)

#6 THE ENTREPRENEUR ROLLER COASTER by Darren Hardy

THE ENTREPRENEUR ROLLER COASTER by Darren Hardy
This book covers every aspect of starting and running a successful business – from mindset to hiring; from selling to being a leader.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

Read more reviews and buy the book here (Amazon)

Search for the audiobook here (Audible)

#7 THE E-MYTH REVISITED by Michael E. Gerber

THE E-MYTH REVISITED by Michael E. Gerber
This book explains the difference between being a self-employed trapped in its own business and a businessman… and how to be the latter instead of the first.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

Read more reviews and buy the book here (Amazon)

Search for the audiobook here (Audible)

#8 THE LEAN STARTUP by Eric Ries

THE LEAN STARTUP by Eric Ries
Nowadays businesses need to change and adapt fast. This is the book that teaches how to it while also cutting expenses.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

Read more reviews and buy the book here (Amazon)

Search for the audiobook here (Audible)

#9 The Tipping Point by Malcolm Gladwell

The Tipping Point by Malcolm Gladwell
Although the book is not a step-by-step model of the best business strategy, the book (which is very well-written and interesting to read) points out the factors that cause a business to go to the next level and not forever be stranded as a small startup.

I found the advice in this book really helpful when starting Advancing Science Worldwide and would recommend that others read it as well as it helps one understand how to set their business above the rest.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

Read more reviews and buy the book here (Amazon)

Search for the audiobook here (Audible)

#10 Starting Your Own Business by Nevin M. Buconjic

Starting Your Own Business by Nevin M. Buconjic
This book takes 20 years of experience as an entrepreneur launching eight companies and boils it down to easy steps to start and grow a small business. It also includes a case study of how the author launched his latest business in a week for less than $250.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

Read more reviews and buy the book here (Amazon)

Search for the audiobook here (Audible)

#11 The Book on Investing in Real Estate with No (and Low) Money Down by Brandon Turner

The Book on Investing in Real Estate with No (and Low) Money Down by Brandon Turner
The lack of financial resources is one of the most frequent obstacles which new real estate investors face. However, you should not allow this to hold you back from starting a real estate investing business. This book teaches first-time property investors how to start investing in real estate with other people’s money. Most importantly, all strategies come from Brandon Turner’s own experience as a successful real estate investor.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

Read more reviews and buy the book here (Amazon)

Search for the audiobook here (Audible)

#12 In the Company of Women by Grace Bonney

In the Company of Women by Grace Bonney
Why is it that when we hear about someone starting a business we automatically think of a man? That has to change, and with books like this we’re one step closer to that change. Grace Bonney addresses the growing trend for women to be leaders in the business world.

She reviews more than 100 women of a variety of industries, ages, background, and races, who all started their own companies. The book provides helpful advice on how to start a business, giving readers tips for success. It also features hundreds of pictures of these women at work, so readers can better picture themselves in these leadership roles.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

Read more reviews and buy the book here (Amazon)

Search for the audiobook here (Audible)

#13 The Hard Thing About Hard Things by Ben Horowitz

The Hard Thing About Hard Things by Ben Horowitz
Ben Horowitz’s The Hard Thing About Hard Things is one of the more impactful books as it relates to starting and growing a young business because it directly addresses the hard topics you don’t want to think about. Most business books are focused on the basics. This book focuses on what to when problems inevitably manifest themselves. Fantastic read.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

Read more reviews and buy the book here (Amazon)

Search for the audiobook here (Audible)

#14 Starting a Business QuickStart Guide by Ken Colwell PhD MBA

Starting a Business QuickStart Guide by Ken Colwell PhD MBA
This recently-released title tackles the full spectrum of skills and information that new entrepreneurs need to know to get their business started and off the ground.

Sourced from over twenty years of firsthand experience working with entrepreneurs, new ventures, and high-growth startups, author Ken Colwell, PHD, MBA breaks down pricing, competition, customer identification, funding, marketing, distribution, and the real components of an entrepreneurial mindset.

Business and entrepreneurship students, small business owners, managers, and soon-to-be entrepreneurs will all find a wealth of value within the pages of the Starting a Business QuickStart Guide.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

Read more reviews and buy the book here (Amazon)

Search for the audiobook here (Audible)

#15 Crushing It! by Gary Vaynerchuk

Crushing It! by Gary Vaynerchuk
If you are an entrepreneur just getting started, struggling, or even doing well but believe in the power of continuing self-education, you already know who Gary Vaynerchuk is. His book, “Crushing It! How Great Entrepreneurs Build Their Business and Influence — and How You Can, Too,” is a fantastic read full of fantastic business advice.

And, it takes it even further: advice on personal branding. If you haven’t begun investing in your personal brand, you absolutely must give this book a read.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

Read more reviews and buy the book here (Amazon)

Search for the audiobook here (Audible)

#16 Good to Great by Jim Collins

Good to Great by Jim Collins
This is one of the best books about starting and running a company. Jim Collins shares very insightful details and case studies on what you should be looking out for when starting a company. For example, one concept that he shared was about looking for the right people to work with first before deciding what to do.

Because when you have the right people in your team, you can accomplish anything. Many of these concepts should definitely be considered when you are starting a company.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

Read more reviews and buy the book here (Amazon)

Search for the audiobook here (Audible)

#17 The $100 Startup by Chris Guillebeau

The $100 Startup by Chris Guillebeau
This is a great book for people who are looking to start their first business. What I like about the book is that there is a thorough coverage of all things related to sales, test driving, launching and growing a micro business.

The author has presented interesting real life cases for scaling businesses as compared to keeping them small. I like how he remained unbiased about the two scenarios and showed both sides fairly – I agree that there really is no right answer, as long as it works for the entrepreneur.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

Read more reviews and buy the book here (Amazon)

Search for the audiobook here (Audible)

#18 The Millionaire Fastlane by MJ DeMarco

The Millionaire Fastlane by MJ DeMarco
This is a cult classic and remain fairly underground. It has sold almost a million copies and is one of the most thorough books on ‘how to build a successful business.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

Read more reviews and buy the book here (Amazon)

Search for the audiobook here (Audible)

#19 The Startup Owner’s Manual by Steve Blank

The Startup Owner's Manual by Steve Blank
This book is a Silicon Valley favorite which provides a fairly extensive breakdown on how to build a product that fits with a market.

Before buying a book make sure to compare price and outlet, we have included links below to several large book outlets for different regions in the world:

Read more reviews and buy the book here (Amazon)

Search for the audiobook here (Audible)

Contributors to this article
David Pike from New York Trolley Co LLC

Andrew Bellay from Straty

Jeff Rasmussen from Take the Next Step Training & Coaching

Mike Moyer from SlicingPie

David Reischer from LegalAdvice.com Corp.

Andrew Morrison from Dotcom Gains

Rithvik Musuku from Advancing Science Worldwide

Nevin Buconjic from Digital Adventures

Daniela Andreevska from Mashvisor

Nate Masterson from Maple Holistics

Adam Tishman from Helix

Benjamin Sweeney from ClydeBank Media

Yaniv Masjedi from Nextiva

Shawn Lim from Fixwerks

Charlotte Ang from M&P International Freights

Jeff Butler from JButler International

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Written by Zak Parker

Journalist, writer, musician, professional procrastinator. I'll add more here later.

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