Five inspiring books that make a refreshing summer reading list for the entrepreneur

By: Ariana Friedlander Thursday June 19, 2014 0 comments


By Ariana Friedlander 

The entrepreneur is always managing competing demands on his or her time. One activity that should always remain a priority is personal and professional development. Whether you attend conferences, get coaching or participate in a business book group, investing the time and energy to refuel your thinking and refresh your perspective is sure to pay off.

I understand that many business books might be dry or dull to read. Here are five inspiring books that are sure to make a refreshing summer reading list for the creative entrepreneur and innovative professional.

  1. Unlabel: Selling You Without Selling Out by Marc Ecko - In this vulnerable memoir-esque book, Marc shares his entrepreneurial journey turning his passion for art and hip-hop into a multi-million dollar fashion business. Along the way he learned that building a brand requires combining authenticity in your voice and action with with "your capacity for change" so that you're creating an emotional impact while leveraging your imagination. He calls this "The Authenticity Formula," and asserts that it's a dynamic, ongoing process filled with trial-and-error as you overcome fear to foster your unique self.

  2. The War of Art: Breakthrough Blocks and Win Your Inner Creative Battles by Steven Pressfield - Creativity is a crucial practice to building a successful business these days. Pressfield debunks the misconception that the most creative endeavors occur with a flash-in-the-pan moment of insight. Instead, he lays out the consistent effort and dedication required to overcoming our most challenging and difficult obstacles. Written in a series of short vignettes, Pressfield first helps readers understand the barriers to creating "Resistance" before providing insight about how to move past such challenges and ultimately embodying the life of a creator.

  3. From Smart to Wise: Acting and Leading with Wisdom by Prasad Kaipa and R - From Smart to Wise provides a well-researched and accessibly presented leadership framework that empowers readers to discover their own path to wise leadership. With the majority of leadership texts being either overly academic or simplified formulas, Kaipa and Radjou strike an artful balance. They have created a book that is founded on empirical evidence yet intelligible to leaders and change agents regardless of their position (or formal education).  This is a must-read for leaders actively developing their capacity for overcoming the challenges of living in a rapidly changing world.

  4. V is for Vulnerable: Life Outside the Comfort Zone by Seth Godin and Hugh MacLeod - Simplicity packs a punch in this picture book that's intriguing and fun to read for all ages. A companion book to The Icarus Deception,Godin and MacLeod provide an alphabetically organized guide for the creative professional to challenge the status quo in order to create their unique vision for success. It's a quick and easy book to reference for daily inspiration and a humbling perspective.

  5. Subliminal: How Your Subconscious Mind Rules Your Behavior by Leonard Mlodinow - In this well researched book, Mlodinow provides an interdisciplinary understanding of the role our subconscious mind plays in perceiving the world, decision-making and our interactions with others. He shares both personal anecdotes as well as citing primary research to demonstrate the ways in which our subconscious influences both perception and behavior. The insights in this reading prove valuable for the leader that seeks to deepen their self-awareness while also developing a better understanding of the human condition within which we all most work.


Interested in delving deeper into these books in order to best apply the lessons learned to your work and life? Join us at EntrepreNerds this fall to discuss these books and more with your fellow entrepreneurs and refuel your thinking with fresh perspectives.
Ariana Friedlander

About the Author: Ariana Friedlander

Ariana Friedlander is the founder and principal of Rosabella Consulting, LLC, and has more than nine years of experience working with small businesses, nonprofits and government agencies to create strategies for successful organizational growth.