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Bookshelf

Reading List

A list of books for personal & professional development.

Business Strategy & Development

 

Books on starting & developing businesses for the long-term.

The E-Myth Revisited, Michael E. Gerber

"An instant classic, this revised and updated edition of the phenomenal bestseller dispels the myths about starting your own business. Small business consultant and author Michael E. Gerber, with sharp insight gained from years of experience, points out how common assumptions, expectations, and even technical expertise can get in the way of running a successful business.

 

Gerber walks you through the steps in the life of a business—from entrepreneurial infancy through adolescent growing pains to the mature entrepreneurial perspective: the guiding light of all businesses that succeed—and shows how to apply the lessons of franchising to any business, whether or not it is a franchise. Most importantly, Gerber draws the vital, often overlooked distinction between working on your business and working in your business." - Goodreads

Rich Dad Poor Dad, Robert T. Kiyosaki

"Rich Dad Poor Dad is Robert's story of growing up with two dads — his real father and the father of his best friend, his "rich dad" — and the ways in which both men shaped his thoughts about money and investing. The book explodes 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." - Goodreads

Yes! 50 Secrets from the Science of Persuasion, Noah J. Goldstein, Robert Cialdini & Steve J. Martin

"Small changes can make a big difference in your powers of persuasion.

What one word can you start using today to increase your persuasiveness by more than fifty percent?
Which item of stationery can dramatically increase people's responses to your requests?
How can you win over your rivals by inconveniencing them?
Why does knowing that so many dentists are named Dennis improve your persuasive prowess?

Every day we face the challenge of persuading others to do what we want. But what makes people say yes to our requests? Persuasion is not only an art, it is also a science, and researchers who study it have uncovered a series of hidden rules for moving people in your direction. Based on more than sixty years of research into the psychology of persuasion, Yes! reveals fifty simple but remarkably effective strategies that will make you much more persuasive at work and in your personal life, too." - Goodreads

The Intelligent Investor Revised Edition, Benjamin Graham, Jason Zweig (Contributor) & Warren Buffett (Contributor)

"The greatest investment advisor of the twentieth century, Benjamin Graham taught and inspired people worldwide. Graham's philosophy of "value investing" -- which shields investors from substantial error and teaches them to develop long-term strategies -- has made The Intelligent Investor the stock market bible ever since its original publication in 1949.

Over the years, market developments have proven the wisdom of Graham's strategies. While preserving the integrity of Graham's original text, this revised edition includes updated commentary by noted financial journalist Jason Zweig, whose perspective incorporates the realities of today's market, draws parallels between Graham's examples and today's financial headlines, and gives readers a more thorough understanding of how to apply Graham's principles." - Goodreads

Rework, David Heinemeier Hansson & Jason Fried

"Most business books give you the same old advice: Write a business plan, study the competition, seek investors, yadda yadda. If you're looking for a book like that, put this one back on the shelf.

Rework shows you a better, faster, easier way to succeed in business. Read it and you'll know why plans are actually harmful, why you don't need outside investors, and why you're better off ignoring the competition. The truth is, you need less than you think. You don't need to be a workaholic. You don't need to staff up. You don't need to waste time on paperwork or meetings. You don't even need an office. Those are all just excuses. 

What you really need to do is stop talking and start working. This book shows you the way. You'll learn how to be more productive, how to get exposure without breaking the bank, and tons more counterintuitive ideas that will inspire and provoke you." - Goodreads

The 4-Hour Workweek, Tim Ferriss

"What do you do? Tim Ferriss has trouble answering the question. Depending on when you ask this controversial Princeton University guest lecturer, he might answer: "I race motorcycles in Europe." "I ski in the Andes." "I scuba dive in Panama." "I dance tango in Buenos Aires." He has spent more than five years learning the secrets of the New Rich, a fast-growing subculture who has abandoned the "deferred-life plan" and instead mastered the new currencies-time and mobility-to create luxury lifestyles in the here and now. Whether you are an overworked employee or an entrepreneur trapped in your own business, this book is the compass for a new and revolutionary world." - Goodreads

Mental Models

Books on developing mental models & lenses to effectively operate in today's complex society. 

Poor Charlie's Almanac, Charlie Munger, Peter E. Kaufman (Editor)

"For the first time ever, the wit and wisdom of Charlie Munger is available in a single volume: all his talks, lectures and public commentary. And, it has been written and compiled with both Charlie Munger and Warren Buffett's encouragement and cooperation. So pull up your favorite reading chair and enjoy the unique humor, wit and insight that Charlie Munger brings to the world of business, investing and life itself." - Poor Charlie's Almanac

The Prince, Niccolo Machiavelli

"The Prince is a 16th-century political treatise written by Italian diplomat and political theorist Niccolò Machiavelli as an instruction guide for new princes and royals. " Wikipedia

Art of War, Sun Tzu

"Twenty-Five Hundred years ago, Sun Tzu wrote this classic book of military strategy based on Chinese warfare and military thought. Since that time, all levels of military have used the teaching on Sun Tzu to warfare and civilization have adapted these teachings for use in politics, business and everyday life. The Art of War is a book which should be used to gain advantage of opponents in the boardroom and battlefield alike." - Goodreads

The Great Mental Models Series, Rhiannon Beaubien & Shane Parrish 

"The Great Mental Models series is designed to upgrade your thinking with the best, most useful and powerful tools so you always have the right one on hand." - Goodreads

Business Biographies

Biographies on companies & business leaders.

The Snowball: Warren Buffett and the Business of Life, Alice Schroeder

"Here is THE book recounting the life and times of one of the most respected men in the world, Warren Buffett. The legendary Omaha investor has never written a memoir, but now he has allowed one writer, Alice Schroeder, unprecedented access to explore directly with him and with those closest to him his work, opinions, struggles, triumphs, follies, and wisdom. The result is the personally revealing and complete biography of the man known everywhere as “The Oracle of Omaha.” Goodreads

Business Adventures, John Brooks

"What do the $350 million Ford Motor Company disaster known as the Edsel, the fast and incredible rise of Xerox, and the unbelievable scandals at General Electric and Texas Gulf Sulphur have in common? Each is an example of how an iconic company was defined by a particular moment of fame or notoriety. These notable and fascinating accounts are as relevant today to understanding the intricacies of corporate life as they were when the events happened." Goodreads

 

Railroader: The Unfiltered Genius and Controversy of Four-Time CEO Hunter Harrison, Howard Green

"Hunter Harrison, the revolutionary railroader from Memphis, dramatically turned four publicly traded companies into cash machines. Starting as a laborer when he was a wayward teenager, Harrison spent a half century in the rail business and nearly two decades running Illinois Central, Canadian National, Canadian Pacific, and CSX." Goodreads

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

"In this candid and riveting memoir, for the first time ever, Nike founder and CEO Phil Knight shares the inside story of the company’s early days as an intrepid start-up and its evolution into one of the world’s most iconic, game-changing, and profitable brands." Goodreads

Barbarians at the Gate: The Fall of RJR Nabisco, Bryan Burrough & John Helyar

"Barbarians at the Gate is the classic account of the fall of RJR Nabisco. An enduring masterpiece of investigative journalism by Bryan Burrough and John Helyar, it includes a new afterword by the authors that brings this remarkable story of greed and double-dealings up to date twenty years after the famed deal. The Los Angeles Times calls Barbarians at the Gate, “Superlative.” The Chicago Tribune raves, “It’s hard to imagine a better story...and it’s hard to imagine a better account.” And in an era of spectacular business crashes and federal bailouts, it still stands as a valuable cautionary tale that must be heeded." Goodreads

Only the Paranoid Survive. Lessons from the CEO of INTEL Corporation, Andrew S. Grove

"The President and CEO of Intel, the world's largest chipmaker, reveals how to identify and exploit the key moments of change in any industry that generates either drastic failure or incredible success." Goodreads

And Then They Fired Me, Jannie Mouton & Carie Maas

"Jannie Mouton is one of South Africa's greatest success stories. He built his business, PSG, after getting fired at age 48 and turned it into a triumphant success worth R61 billion. Here he talks openly about what went on behind the scenes - even the most controversial transactions. With typical honesty and humour, he freely shares his business and investment advice." Goodreads

Newsletters

Weekly or periodic newsletters worth subscribing to for insights into business & market trends.

Brain Food, Farnam Street

Brain Food. A weekly newsletter packed with timeless insights and actionable ideas from a wide range of disciplines.

Liberty’s Highlights
Insights and articles from the business (and wider world on a weekly basis. One of our favorite newsletters.

Rational Reflections

"Covers current events, investing, personal finance, philosophy, book reviews, and more."

Permanent Equity - Essays, Letters & Interviews

"We're in the business of helping small to mid-sized business owners run, grow, and transition ownership of their business more effectively." Practical SME insights from a "private equity" firm that buys to hold.

Not Boring by Packy McCormick

"Not Boring is the most fun way to learn about what’s going on in business and the strategy behind the decisions companies make." 

Nongaap Investing

A "“creative outlet” to write about tech, investing, corporate governance, and other topics I find interesting." Not a lot of new content anymore, but what is there provides an insight into corporate governance and the red flags that raise from seeming standard corporate activities. 

Podcast

Podcasts on topics ranging from business to investing to general insights. We use Overcast to listen to podcasts. It has a great interface and is itself a small business.

American Innovations

"DNA science. Artificial intelligence. Smartphones and 3D printers. Science and technology have transformed the world we live in. But how did we get here? It wasn’t by accident. Well, sometimes it was. It was also the result of hard work, teamwork, and competition. And incredibly surprising moments. Hosted by bestselling author Steven Johnson (“How We Got To Now”), American Innovations uses immersive scenes to tell the stories of the scientists, engineers, and ordinary people behind the greatest discoveries of the past century." Website

The Acquirers Podcast

"This is a podcast about finding undervalued stocks, deep value investing, hedge funds, shareholder activism, buyouts, and special situations. We uncover the tactics and strategies for finding good investments, managing risk, dealing with bad luck, and maximizing success." Website

Business Breakdowns

"Business Breakdowns is a series of conversations with investors and operators diving deep into a single business. For each business, we explore its history, its business model, its competitive advantages, and what makes it tick." Website

 

Business Movers

"Behind every successful business is a story. It starts with a vision and a leap of faith. Along the way, leaders make bold decisions, ride booms and busts, and sometimes, they reach new heights. From Wondery, the makers of the hit series Business Wars, and Lindsay Graham, the host of American History Tellers and American Scandal, comes a weekly podcast that brings you the true stories of the brilliant but all-too-human businesspeople who risked it all." Website

Business Wars

"Business Wars gives you the unauthorized, real story of what drives these companies and their leaders, inventors, investors and executives to new heights -- or to ruin. Hosted by David Brown, former anchor of Marketplace. From Wondery, the network behind Dirty John and American History Tellers." Website

The Business Brew

"This podcast digs deep into the thought patterns of investors and business people." Website
 

How I Built this

"Guy Raz dives into the stories behind some of the world's best known companies. How I Built This weaves a narrative journey about innovators, entrepreneurs and idealists—and the movements they built." Website

Kindredcast

"KindredCast brings you news, views and insights from the world of media and technology. Produced by and curated by Kindred Media and powered by leading independent TMT investment bank LionTree, the show features in-depth conversations with other industry leaders." Website

The Knowledge Project with Shane Parrish

"The Knowledge Project Podcast unlocks your potential. We interview world-class doers and thinkers so you can better analyze problems, seize opportunities, and master decision-making. Every episode is packed with lessons and insights that never expire." Website

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