What self improvement books can I recommend to entrepreneurs? What self improvement books do I read to become a better entrepreneur? Which books can entrepreneurs read to improve themselves? Can books help entrepreneurs in their self improvement programs? Why do entrepreneurs need to read self improvement books? Well, I will suggest you read on as I am going to provide all the answers you need in this article.

Be as careful as to the books you read as of the company you keep, for your habits and characters will be as much influenced by the former as the latter.” – Poxton Hood

Life is a journey, not a destination and so also is business. As an entrepreneur, you have to motivate yourself first, before you try to motivate your employees and business team. The entrepreneurial process is a personal journey every entrepreneur must embark upon to build a successful business.

But unfortunately, not all who start this process makes it to the end; most drop along the way. To successfully complete the entrepreneurial process, you need more than just business skills. You need a strong personality and that’s where self improvement comes in.

I have never met a man that has given me as much trouble as myself.” – Wright. L. Moody

Self improvement encompasses a lot; from leadership skills development to moral behavior and habits development. It all boils down to one thing; “self improvement.” Entrepreneurial skill development or any other kind of development without self improvement is null and void, a complete waste of time and resources.

Income seldom exceeds personal development.” – Jim Rohn

Most entrepreneurs do not know how to motivate themselves; not to talk of motivating their employees and business team, so I will be using this article and subsequent editions to introduce some self improvement books that will not only motivate you but also help you develop the needed entrepreneurial skills. So if you are good to go, then below are four self Improvement books that have positively influenced me the most.

7 Self Improvement Books for Entrepreneurs and Business Owners

1.            21 Indispensable Qualities of Leadership: Becoming the Leader Others Will Follow – By John C. Maxwell

This business book reveals how some people consistently inspire others to follow their lead. John C. Maxwell is a respected business leader with many books to his credit, and this book  has really proved that John Maxwell knows his onions. I hope you know that in business, leadership skill is not optional; it’s a must.

In this self improvement book, the author “John C. Maxwell” identifies the top traits of successful business leaders such as character, charisma, commitment, communication, competence, courage, discernment, focus, generosity, initiative, listening, passion, positive attitude, problem-solving, relationships, responsibility, security, self-discipline, servant hood and vision.

John Maxwell also broke down the necessary leadership qualities every entrepreneur must possess into an easy to understand format. Character is what defines a leader, and the traits listed above are what people of character possess. This self development book will teach you how to develop these leadership traits. I declare this self improvement book a must read for entrepreneurs and leaders in any position.

2.            Discover Your Strengths – by Marcus Buckingham

This self improvement book by Marcus Buckingham is highly recommended for entrepreneurs because it will help you discover your inner strengths and motivate you to work towards making those strengths stronger. Most of the successful entrepreneurs and richest school drop out billionaires ultimately became billionaires because they discovered their passion/strength and built a business around it.

Oprah Winfrey discovered her passion for speaking and became a billionaire. J. K. Rowling discovered her passion for writing and became a billionaire. Debbi Field’s became rich with her passion for baking cookies; Rachael Ray became rich with cooking and Bill Gates became the richest man in the world with his passion for programming.

50 Cent, Russell Simons, Dr Dre, Bryan Birdman, Jay-Z, Michael Jackson and Beyonce Knowles all became rich and famous because they discovered their passion for music and utilized it to the fullest. If discovering your strengths/passion and joining these cliché is your concern, then I will advice you get the book. This self improvement book will help you a lot because it also contains a personal survey that can help you get started immediately in the discovering of your strength.

3.            Who Moved My Cheese? – by Spencer Johnson

This self improvement book is all about change. It is all about being the change that you want to see in the world. Most people are agitating for a change in government, change in their relationship; they even want to see change in the life of their family and friends. But they’ve never considered changing themselves.

It’s easier to change one’s self than to change another. Instead of craving for change in everything around you; change yourself. Effective change starts from the inside and that’s where the book “who moved my cheese” comes in; to guide you through the process of undergoing this change. Life is dynamic and so also is business; it changes at every twinkle of an eye and to survive or emerge successful in life, you must be willing to change. But unfortunately, most people resist change. In fact, they hate it.

So it is based on this that I advice you get this self improvement book with immediate effect. It’s going to change your perception towards life.

4.            7 Habits of Highly Effective People –        by Steven Covey

From the information contained in this book, I can imagine the amount of effort Steven Covey put into this book. Well, why should he? After all, he’s a highly effective person. Instead of rambling and ranting about the content of this book, I will suggest you go through the questionnaire below and if any of the questions sets your heart burning. If any does, then it’s a sign that this book is for you.

What makes the great, great? What habits are possessed by highly effective and successful entrepreneurs? What habits does the school drop out billionaires possess that the average college degree holders lack?

What’s the secret to the high effectiveness of famous entrepreneurs such as Warren Buffett, Ingvar Kamprad, Oprah Winfrey, Aliko Dangote and Mark Zuckerberg? What habits must I possess to be effective, successful and famous? Well, I don’t think I can provide the answers to all these questions here, so I will recommend you buy the book because it speaks for itself.

5.            How to Win Friends and Influence People – Dale Carnegie

An all time best seller; this self improvement book will help improve your communication skills, smoothen your business relationships and ultimately help you gain an undue influence on your friends and business associates.

In the book, Dale Carnegie highlighted some tactical approach to increasing your strategic influence. Have you ever wondered why some entrepreneurs raise millions and billions of dollars in capital while others struggle without success to raise just $10,000?

Have you ever wondered how Pastor Enoch Adeboye, Oprah Winfrey, Mark Zuckerberg, Condoleezza Rice, Warren Buffett and Barrack Obama emerged on the Times list of most influential people in the world? Have you ever desired to know how Mary Kay Ash and Steve Jobs became the most famous business persons of the 20th and 21th century respectively?

Do you want to learn the magic words that will help you pitch angel investors and Venture Capitalist successfully? Do you want to become the business leader that people listen to (Warren Buffett)? Do you want to be influential with millions of fans or followers like Michael Jackson and Celine Dion?

Do you want to learn how to make people volunteer to undertake tasks for you? Do you want to develop people skills, negotiation skills and public speaking skills? Then this self improvement book is for you.

6.            Think and Grow Rich –    Napoleon Hill

This self improvement book is another all time classic best seller. Most individuals are in search of the Holy Grail to making millions of dollars and ultimate becoming rich. What this individuals don’t know is that the secret to wealth lies inside of them; waiting to be discovered and harnessed.

Think and grow rich” is a self improvement book that challenges you to look inward and discover yourself. In this self improvement book; the lives of successful people such as John D. Rockefeller, Charles Schwab, Henry Ford, Thomas Edison, Edwin Barnes, Andrew Carnegie, Abraham Lincoln was analyzed and the secrets to their success revealed.

This book ultimately highlights practical steps to developing million dollar ideas. With a lot of illustrations, worksheets and case studies to guide you in the entrepreneurial process of developing a million dollar idea.

7.            The Holy Bible

God’s word; the bible is supernatural in origin, external in duration, inexpressible in value, infinite in scope, regenerative in power, infallible in authority, universal in application and inspired in totality. Read it through, pray it in, work it out and pass it on.” – Smith Wigglesworth

This list of must read self improvement books will never be complete without the Holy Bible. In fact, the holy bible is the greatest of all books written and all self improvement books ever written are simply derivatives of the holy bible.

The holy bible is infinite in wisdom and in-depth in knowledge; with insights and advice on subjects ranging from self improvement, personal development and business strategies to spiritual guidance and growth, relationships, love and parenting; the holy bible is undoubtedly the most important, must have self improvement book for entrepreneurs.

The bible is worth all other books which have ever been printed.” – Patrick Henry

As a final note, these are just a few of the popular self improvement books I have read and can confidently recommend to you. Whenever you want answers to certain questions about life and how it relates to business, you can always pick any of these self improvement books and find the answer you seek. Good luck.

Ajaero Tony Martins