30 Best Business Books of 2019

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Best Business Books

The best business books provide a combination of psychology, philosophy, and actionable information for both budding and seasoned entrepreneurs. Indeed, some of the most beloved business books are like portable mentors, a ready source of advice and inspiration to help businesspeople get through their tough days.

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Whether you own an SMB (small- to medium-sized business) or are climbing the ladder in a major corporation, you're likely looking for every advantage you can get to become and remain successful. The strategies provided by the best business books of the year can help you get the edge you need to stake your claim in today's hectic and increasingly dynamic marketplace.

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Note: while not all these books were published in 2019, they all remain essential and timeless so we're including them in this post.

The 30 Best Business Books of 2019:

Title

Goodreads Rating

Synopsis

"The 10 Things I Wish I Knew Before I Started Freelancing: What Nobody Else has Told You" by David R. Rodriguez

4.67 Stars from 33 Ratings

If you're thinking of becoming a freelancer, David Rodriguez illustrates the ups and downs so you can make sure you're making the right decision.

"Shoe Dog: A Memoir by the Creator of Nike" by Phil Knight

4.44 Stars from 60,703 Ratings

Knight shares the ups and downs of the phenomenal growth of Nike, starting with the original $50 investment he used to import shoes that he sold from his car.

"Lost and Founder: A Painfully Honest Guide to the Startup World" by Rand Fishkin

4.44 Stars from 408 Ratings

Rand Fishkin, CEO of Moz, describes in sometimes painful detail both his successes and failures in creating an eventually profitable startup.

"Profit First: A Simple System to Transform Any Business from a Cash-Eating Monster to a Money-Making Machine" by Mike Michalowicz

4.38 Stars from 1,607 Ratings

Your accounting system could operate contrary to your business's ability to sustain profit - Michalowicz provides a way to escape the check-to-check cycle.

"The Culture Code: The Secrets of Highly Successful Groups" by Daniel Coyle

4.37 Stars from 3,180 Ratings

Coyle discusses the strategies that help disparate groups, from Navy SEALs to Kindergartners, build a cohesive internal structure and succeed.

"Extreme Ownership: How U.S. Navy SEALs Lead and Win" by Jocko Willink & Leif Babin

4.28 Stars from 22,288 Ratings

Navy SEALs Willink and Babin show how you can apply SEAL leadership training to your business.

"The Magic of Thinking Big" by David J. Schwartz

4.22 Stars from 55,561 Ratings

Bestselling author David Schwartz provides actionable methods that help you reframe your thinking and get the most out of business and life.

"The Hard Thing About Hard Things: Building a Business When There Are No Easy Answers" by Ben Horowitz

4.22 Stars from 31,040 Ratings

Successful entrepreneur and popular business blogger Ben Horowitz explores the gritty reality and messy truth of running a successful business.

"The Heart of Leadership: Becoming a Leader People Want to Follow" by Mark Miller

4.22 Stars from 500 Ratings

Mark Miller breaks down the 5 unique characteristics of a great leader, and tells you how you can nurture them and become someone people want to follow.

"Deep Work: Rules for Focused Success in a Distracted World" by Cal Newport

4.19 Stars from 32,174 Ratings

As we find our attention being increasingly stretched thin, Cal Newport provides a number of ways to regain focus and get back to work.

"Tools of Titans: The Tactics, Routines, and Habits of Billionaires, Icons, and World-Class Performers" by Timothy Ferriss

4.19 Stars from 19,001 Ratings

Bestselling author Timothy Ferris shares tips and tactics from successful people in disparate fields ranging from biochemistry to mega celebrity to the Navy SEALs.

"Radical Candor: Be a Kickass Boss Without Losing Your Humanity" by Kim Malone Scott

4.19 Stars from 9,694 Ratings

Scott uses management techniques honed at Google and Apple to show you how to find the balance between praise and criticism and inspire your employees.

"Think and Grow Rich" by Napoleon Hill

4.18 Stars from 158,917 Ratings

Published in 1937, "Think and Grow Rich" is a business classic which, among many other achievements, coined the idea of the mastermind group.

"Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion" by Robert B. Cialdini

4.18 Stars from 75,957 Ratings

Dr. Robert Cialdini is an expert on why people say "yes," and shows how you can apply his findings to become a skilled persuader.

"Zero to One: Notes on Startups, or How to Build the Future" by Peter Thiel with Blake Masters

4.16 Stars from 112,260 Ratings

In "Zero to One" Thiel explains that there are still uncharted territories in business, and that new ideas are what will fuel our economic future.

"Competitive Strategy: Techniques for Analyzing Industries and Competitors" by Michael E. Porter

4.16 Stars from 13,138 Ratings

A business classic in its 60th printing, "Competitive Strategy" teaches you how to tackle complex strategic planning with 3 basic competitive tools.

"Crushing It!: How Great Entrepreneurs Build Their Business and Influence—and How You Can, Too" by Gary Vaynerchuk

4.14 Stars from 3,903 Ratings

In his follow-up to "Crush It," Vaynerchuk shares stories of entrepreneurs who have achieved wild success by following the Crush It principles.

"Extreme Revenue Growth: Startup Secrets to Growing Your Sales from $1 Million to $25 Million in Any Industry" by Victor Cheng

4.13 Stars from 15 Ratings

In this revolutionary book Cheng breaks down the strategies used by bleeding-edge tech companies and provides the way to apply them to any business.

"Thinking, Fast and Slow" by Daniel Kahneman

4.12 Stars from 196,191 Ratings

In this in-depth investigation into how we think, Daniel Kahneman helps the reader understand when to trust intuition and when to slow down and think things over.

"The Talent Code: Unlocking the Secret of Skill in Sports, Art, Music, Math, and Just About Everything Else" by Daniel Coyle

4.07 Stars from 16,008 Ratings

Daniel Coyle uses cutting-edge neurological discoveries to show how you can radically grow your natural talents.

"The Lean Startup: How Today's Entrepreneurs Use Continuous Innovation to Create Radically Successful Businesses" by Eric Ries

4.06 Stars from 140,995 Ratings

Eric Ries identifies the differences between successful and failed startups and provides a roadmap to success based on concepts used in lean manufacturing.

"The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck: A Counterintuitive Approach to Living a Good Life" by Mark Manson

4.02 Stars from 200,209 Ratings

The road to happiness is not often the road to success, argues popular blogger Mark Manson in this irreverent guide to living and working better by not always thinking positively.

"The War of Art: Break Through the Blocks & Win Your Inner Creative Battles" by Steven Pressfield

4.02 Stars from 51,091 Ratings

Steven Pressfield offers this straightfoward guide to help you overcome your inner resistance and freely express yourself creatively.

"The CEO Next Door: The 4 Behaviors That Transform Ordinary People into World Class Leaders" by Elena Botelho and Kim Powell with Tahl Raz

4.01 Stars from 313 Ratings

The trail to becoming a successful CEO is often not as straight and clear-cut as you'd think, as Botelho and Powell contend in this illuminating study of the real factors that help leaders reach the top.

"The Charisma Myth: How Anyone Can Master the Art and Science of Personal Magnetism" by Olivia Fox Cabane

3.96 Stars from 10,032 Ratings

In "The Charisma Myth," Cabane applies hard science to an esoteric topic, science you can use to increase your charisma.

"Getting Everything You Can Out of All You've Got: 21 Ways You Can Out-Think, Out-Perform, and Out-Earn the Competition" by Jay Abraham

3.96 Stars from 6,455 Ratings

Corporate guru Jay Abraham shows you how to recognize, take advantage of, and wildly profit from the unseen opportunities you're presented every day

"Rework" by Jason Fried and David Heinemeier Hansson

3.93 Stars from 116,548 Ratings

Throw out all the old ideas about how to start a successful business; Fried and Hansson show you what you really need to help your business thrive in today's marketplace.

"Crush It!: Why Now Is the Time to Cash In on Your Passion" by Gary Vaynerchuk

3.89 Stars from 24,985 Ratings

In the bestselling "Crush It" Gary Vaynerchuk shares the story of how he built his passion into a wildly successful business, and how you can too.

"The 4-Hour Work Week: Escape 9-5, Live Anywhere, and Join the New Rich" by Timothy Ferriss

3.86 Stars from 110,886 Ratings

Tim Ferriss shares the time-saving and life-expanding secrets he's learned from spending 5 years intensely studying the world's "new rich".

"Emotional Intelligence 2.0" by Travis Bradberry & Jean Greaves

3.84 Stars from 65,239 Ratings

Bradberry and Greaves illustrate how you can increase your emotional intelligence and employ it to better face business and life challenges.

Best Business Books to Read
What Are the Best Business Books to Read?
  • "Lost and Founder" by Rand Fishkin.
  • "Deep Work" by Cal Newport.
  • "Thinking, Fast and Slow" by Daniel Kahneman.
  • "The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck" by Mark Manson.
  • "The CEO Next Door" by Elena Botelho and Kim Powell.
  • "Shoe Dog" by Phil Knight.
  • "The 4-Hour Work Week" by Timothy Ferriss.
  • "The War of Art" by Steven Pressfield.
Best Selling Business Books
What are some of the best selling business books?
  • "The Culture Code" by Daniel Coyle.
  • "Shoe Dog" by Phil Knight.
  • "The Lean Startup" by Eric Ries.
  • "Thinking, Fast and Slow" by Daniel Kahneman.
  • "Profit First" by Mike Michalowicz.
  • "The Hard Thing About Hard Things" by Ben Horowitz.
  • "Getting Everything You Can Out of All You've Got" by Jay Abraham.
  • "Extreme Revenue Growth" by Victor Cheng.

FAQs:

What are the best business books for starting a business?

Well, what type of business are you starting? You'll often find that a number of the best business books to read contain general information that can apply to a number of different businesses, but you'll likely also come across titles that speak directly to your type of business. It's best to research and find the most highly-ranked books, then read reviews to discover which books best suit your needs.

Find what you're looking for in our list of the 30 best business books.

Why do I need to read the best business books?

It's always good to know what the best minds have to say, and the best books to read for business can provide you with the strategies to succeed both on a business and personal level. Knowing what's worked and what hasn't for successful business leaders can give you insight into how you can better run your company, manage your team, and grow both personally and professionally.

Explore our list of the 30 best business books of 2019.

What if I don't have time to read the best business strategy books?

Well, ask yourself this: what if reading the best business strategy books allows you to better use your time? What if you could work less and accomplish more? There's a reason the best business books to read are recommended by hundreds or even thousands of people - they can help you stop wasting time and effort on fruitless strategies while providing new strategies that lead you to greater success.

Learn more about the 30 best business books of 2019.

What are the best business books of all time?

That topic is likely up for debate, as business and life have changed radically over the years. The best business book of 1950 is probably not among the best business books of 2019, and it could well be that the best business book of all time has yet to be written. That said, once you expand your business library you'll find that some core concepts are evergreen and timeless.

Visit our list of 2019's top 30 business books.

What are the best books for starting a small business?

Once you start digging into the best business books, you'll find that you can learn applicable strategies from both books written by or about Fortune 500 CEOs and those detailing the travails of scrappy startups. That said, there are a number of books that directly concern starting a small business. Do the research, and you'll discover many books that can help you successfully establish and run a small business.

Explore our list of the best business books of 2019.

What are the best business leadership books?

It only makes sense that the best business leadership books are written by or about the most successful business leaders. Look into companies you admire and see if there are any books that tell their story. That said, don't limit yourself - the best business books provide an opportunity to expand your horizons, and the titles that speak to you could surprise you.

Get insight with our list of the top 30 business books of 2019.