On average I go through 50 books a year. Some are true eye openers (like “Genghis Khan” or “The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich”), others are true life-changers (like “Why We Sleep” by Matthew Walker).
Most are simply amazing reads (like “Atlas Shrugged” by Ayn Rand), but a few are proper MUST-READS for anyone who wants to have a fulfilling career.
I’m not going to proselytize about the importance of “Do what you love, and you’ll never work another day in your life”. A wise man once said, “Only about 3% of people really know what they want to do when they grow up, and they confuse the hell out of the rest of us.”
There’s too much talk of being passionate about your job, and it confuses people. The secret to a fulfilling career is a multiverse of complex social and professional relations, positive and negative experiences, numerous jobs and bosses, colleagues and mentors.
However, the key to untangling this puzzle is simple: books.
Online courses, mentors, events, on-the-job training – all are essential, just like hills, HIIT, sprints, stretching and strength training are to long-distance running. But if you don’t do the miles – none of that will help when you are at mile 20.
Books are your base-training on top of which you build your peak performance and a successful career.
You will note that all of the books below are business books and there are no fiction books on the list. Why? Simple – reading fiction won’t make your career more fulfilling. On the other hand reading these non-fiction books will change the trajectory of your career forever for the best.
Here are my Top Categories with some of the best books in each that will make a huge positive difference in your career.
NB: Don’t read them at your own peril!
⁃ Peak Performance by Brad Stulberg
⁃ Getting Things Done by David Allen
⁃ Why We Sleep by Matthew Walker
⁃ E-myth Revisited by Michael E. Gerber
⁃ Now, Discover Your Strengths by Marcus Buckingham
⁃ Measuring What Matters by John Doerr
⁃ Radical Focus by Christina R Wodtke
⁃ Radical Candor by Kim Scott
⁃ Who: The A method for Hiring by Geoff Smart and Randy Street
⁃ Extreme Ownership by Jocko Willink
–High Output Management by Andrew S. Grove
– 80/20 Sales and Marketing: The Definitive Guide to Working Less and Making More by Perry Marshall
– Sell or Be Sold: How to Get Your Way in Business and in Life by Grant Cardone
– Predictable Revenue by Aaron Ross
– Ask by Ryan Levesque
– The Sales Acceleration Formula by Mark Roberge
⁃ The Startup Owner’s Manual by Steve Blank
⁃ Startup CEO: A Field Guide to Scaling Up Your Business by Matt Blumberg
Stay tuned! I’ll be adding more.