22 Must Read Books for Entrepreneurs in 2015

Statistics show that the most successful people have a similar habit…you guessed it. They read books.

An article in Entrepreneur Magazine said that 63 percent of wealthy parents make their children read two or more non-fiction books a month vs. 3 percent of poor. Additionally, 63 percent of wealthy listen to audio books during commute to work vs. 5 percent of poor people.

Over the last 12 months I had a goal to read one business and one faith based book a month. I was not as successful as I wanted to (insert any excuse) but I did read some inspirational books that changed the outlook of the year.

This year, I’m setting a goal to get back to my plan.

This is a list of my top reads of 2014 and I’ve included my partial reading list for 2015.


Essentialism – The book I read twice in 2014…In my continued pursuit of less, this book delivers value on every page. The Way of the Essentialist isn’t about getting more done in less time. It’s not about getting less done. It’s about getting only the right things done.

The One Thing – My challenge in 2015 is to say no to 90% of the things that come my way so that I can say yes to focused ventures and clients. No matter how success is measured, personal or professional, only the ability to dismiss distractions and concentrate on your ONE Thing stands between you and your goals.

Psycho-Cybernetics – This is where the science of self development all began. Get more out of your life (happiness and success) by reading this timeless book by Maxwell Maltz.

The Slight Edge – Jeff Olson shows you how to create powerful results from the simple daily activities. His influence comes those he’s worked with, including Les Brown, Jim Rohn, Brian Tracy, and many others.

The Alchemist – This story, dazzling in its powerful simplicity and inspiring wisdom, is about an Andalusian shepherd boy named Santiago who travels from his homeland in Spain to the Egyptian desert in search of a treasure buried in the Pyramids.

Trust Me I’m Lying – Gain a behind-the-scenes look into the new world of media as we know it. Marketing genius Ryan Holiday exposes how the online journalism system works and how to hack yourself to the top of the headlines.

Influence – Arguably the best book ever on what is increasingly becoming the science of persuasion. Robert Cialdini  explains the psychology of why people say “yes”—and how to apply these understandings.

Launch – Jeff Walker, the pioneer innovator of online marketing launches and creator of the Product Launch Formula, shares how to successfully market yourself and your message and sell products from the digital platform.

My 2015 Reading List:

Money Masters – Tony Robbins uses his extensive research and one-on-one interviews with more than 50 of the most legendary financial experts in the world to created his simple 7-step blueprint that anyone can use for financial freedom.

Unbroken – Unbroken is an unforgettable testament to the resilience of the human mind, body, and spirit, brought to life by author Laura Hillenbrand. This book has over 16,000 5 star reviews on Amazon which shows the popularity of this novel.

The Intelligent Investor – Warren Buffett refers to this book as “the best book about investing ever written”. While the book is a little dated, the principles upon which it is based remain fundamental to the reader.

Daily Rituals – Whether it’s waking early or staying up late; or by self-medicating with doughnuts or bathing, drinking vast quantities of coffee…you get the point. Get an insight into 160+ productive folks routines with this book.

Lead Small – I started leading a group of 8th grade boys a few months ago. Although there is no template for leading young men,  the authors build out five common threads so that those who choose to lead in any size church can work off the same blueprint.

The Miracle Morning – This book guarantees it’s readers a not-so-obvious” secret that transform every area of your life in just 6 minutes a day. I’m sold.

Killing Sacred Cows – Author Garrett Gunderson takes a shot the social brainwashing and financial planners and institutions that are constricting Americans’ financial freedom and undermining their abilities to prosper. Highly recommended my many of my “weathly” mentors.

The Reason for God – Tim Keller, the founding pastor of Redeemer Presbyterian Church in New York City addresses the frequent doubts that skeptics and non-believers bring to religion.

Some of my favorite books that I should include that didn’t make the list above are:

The Bible – The book that I stick to reading more often than any mentioned here. I personally believe that the Bible is the Word of God.  2 Timothy says “All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, 17 so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.”

Rich Dad Poor Dad – The book debunks the myth that you need to earn a high income to be rich and explains the difference between working for money and having your money work for you. I read this in high school and it has changed my way of thinking forever on assets and liabilities.

Think & Grow Rich – Napoleon Hill explains that the philosophy taught in the book can be used to help people succeed in all lines of work and to do or be almost anything they want. Another timeless book read over and over again.

The 4-Hour Workweek – Tim Ferriss’s book on automation an outsourcing, creating passive income, taking your retirement now (before you’re too old), removing yourself from the traditional 9-5 and experiencing life all throughout this process. One of my favorite books of all time.

Rework – A book by the guys behind 37 Signals (Basecamp.com) that addresses the main topics every startup faces. In a world where we all keep getting asked to do more with less, the authors show us how to do less and create more.

The Millionaire Fastlane – One of the best books that I’ve read that teaches you the right way to becoming wealthy and the mindset that must go along with it.

What about you? Are there books that you’re planning to read this year? Make your list and head to the store (or amazon) and bring your list to life.

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2 Comments

  1. Brian (@bbrian017)   •  

    Hi John,

    Everyone should read books. Books are the best source of acquiring new knowledge. Most of the successful entrepreneurs that we see today got inspired by someone. In most cases, this inspiration came from a book.

    For those who are looking to be entrepreneurs, the new book on Steve Jobs is pretty good. It describes how Steve became a visionary leader.

    Thanks for sharing these books as well.

  2. Keith Hearn   •  

    Great list. I read tons of entrepreneur related books and started to get worried because I had not heard of most of the ones you listed first. I think from Killing Sacred Cows on, I could check most of those off my list, but thanks for opening my eyes to some great new titles!

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