Shopping for the holidays can seem a bit daunting at first, especially if you're buying for a busy entrepreneur or business person. You may not know how to begin and have probably found yourself scrolling through countless websites trying to find that one, perfect gift. So let me help. Here are 17 of the best business books to give as gifts this holiday season.
1. High Performance Habits by Brendon Burchard
World-renowned high-performance coach Brendon Burchard is the hottest topic in self-led progress and success in today's business world. This New York Times bestselling author published his most recent book, High Performance Habits: How Extraordinary People Become That Way, after conducting the world's most comprehensive study of high performers -- people who have long-lasting and meaningful success in every aspect of their lives. In this book, he presents his findings in a scientific, yet anecdotal narrative about the struggles, successes, and habits that created the highest-performing people across the globe.
This book would make a great gift for anyone, but it's especially helpful for those who have expressed feelings of boredom or disdain toward their career. The best part about Brendon's books? You can get almost all of them for just the price of shipping on his website! Simply plug in your email address and access his three most popular books -- High Performance Habits, The Motivation Manifesto, and The Millionaire Messenger -- and pay only for shipping! These books are valued at $20 each, and you'd be getting each of them for only $7.
A game-changing framework for staying top of mind with your audience?from the No. 1 company dominating content marketing. What do many successful businesses and leaders have in common? They're the first names that come to mind when people think about their particular industries. How do you achieve this level of trust that influences people to think of you in the right way at the right time? By developing habits and strategies that focus on engaging your audience, creating meaningful relationships, and delivering value consistently, day in and day out.
I know John and his team and they truly figured out how to build influence and top of mind awareness. This is a must-read for any business person who wants to build a personal brand.
3. Leaders Eat Last by Simon Sinek
In true Simon Sinek fashion, this book has a perfect mix of humor, antics, and real-life strategies based on timeless theories and academic studies that explain why certain businesses thrive so much more than others. This book is based on a conversation that Sinek had with a Marine officer during his time spent traveling the world, helping teams become better at teamwork and communication. "Officers eat last," the Marine said --unknowingly summing up the perfect explanation of success from the platform of leadership that Sinek had ever heard: "Great leaders sacrifice their own comfort -- even their own survival -- for the good of those in their care."
This is a great option for a gift to anyone who is new or struggling with a leadership position in their career.
4. Self-Employed: 50 Signs That You Might Be an Entrepreneur by Joel Comm and John Rampton
In Self-Employed, Joel Comm and John Rampton detail 50 qualities that personify those who could do well as entrepreneurs. These 50 qualities provide a framework for those already working or about to enter their careers so they can decide if they might make it in business on their own. Not sure if the entrepreneurial lifestyle is for you? Or do you want to double-check on yourself to see if the business you have already started is congruent with who you are?
I read this after meeting John at a conference at which we both were speaking. I have started sharing this with all of my clients who are starting a new business or have been in business a short time.
5. Blue Ocean Strategy by W. Chan Kim
While not the most fun read in the world, Blue Ocean Strategy: How to Create Uncontested Market Space and Make the Competition Irrelevant is a must-read for any aspiring entrepreneur or business marketer. Covering the simple, yet deep theory surrounding what Kim calls the Blue Ocean Strategy, this book speaks in depth about the key factors that create a successful profitable business from the view of average clicks per day, average purchases per month, and average annual salary. Kim's book discusses the complicated world of finding a niche "sweet-spot" specific enough to make money, but not so specific that an entrepreneur limits his or her target market to the same 20 people.
If you know someone who is trying to start a business and is still trying to figure out where to start, this book has the potential to be an absolutely transformational gift for them.
6. The Unlimited Mind by Zoe McKey
Zoe McKey is the author of such titles as The Minimalist Budget and Rewire Your Habits. Her newest book, The Unlimited Mind, is a fantastic narrative on the importance of a disciplined mind. It teaches you key tricks that are used by some of the most successful people in the world to help you develop your mindset and conquer your intelligence.
Whether you're buying for a small business owner, a student, or anyone in between, this book has something in it that applies to everyone.
7. Never Split the Difference by Chris Voss
In this book, author Chris Voss delves deep inside his experiences as the FBI's lead kidnapping negotiator to help you on your way to developing fantastic negotiation and persuasion skills. Never Split the Difference isn't just about maneuvering negotiation tactics, or ways to overcome your adversary in a battle of wits. Whether you are negotiating the safe return of a child, or just negotiating a raise, the principles are the same. In this book, Voss takes some of the key principles of negotiation that he's learned over the years and applies them to real-world, mundane situations that are integral to the success of any professional trying to make their mark on the world.
This would be a great gift for young adults who are just starting out in the professional world, but includes amazing tricks that are applicable to anyone in the work force.
These two books are under the same recommendation because, while each can be read as a stand-alone book, the information covered is so integral that they may as well be a two-part series. In Start With Why, Sinek dives headfirst into the ever-curious world of business strategy and why some people and organizations are more innovative, influential, and profitable than others. By starting a business strategy or innovation with "Why?" instead of "Who?" or "What?" the world becomes your oyster. In this book, Sinek takes the core values of some of the most influential leaders in history -- people like the Wright Brothers, Steve Jobs, and Martin Luther King Jr. -- and explains that, while these men had little to nothing in common, they all started their movements by asking themselves one question: "Why does the world need this to happen?"
In Find Your Why, Sinek goes even further with the idea he began in his first book. The second part of this series speaks about the methods, tasks, and ideas that help someone who has begun to ask themselves the questions that are presented in Start With Why. It takes all of the information covered in the first section and applies it to real-world examples so that you can find even more inspiration in your work and in your life, and, in turn, inspire those around you to do the same.
This set of books is a great option for anyone who is interested in becoming more intentional with their time. It can be particularly beneficial for startup business owners, entrepreneurs, people who are in leadership positions within their career, or anyone who is struggling to find their path in the business world.
9. The 5 Second Rule by Mel Robbins
Mel Robbins explains the power of "push moments" in her book, The 5 Second Rule: Transform your Life, Work, and Confidence With Everyday Courage. She believes that knowing exactly how to push yourself in a way that won't burn you out is key to successfully breaking through procrastination and self-doubt. In this book, she explores the use of one simple tool that takes five seconds to transform the attitude you bring to any situation. According to Robbins, it takes just five seconds to transform the way you think about confidence, uncertainty, happiness, courage, and self-doubt, so that you can start truly living your life the way you were meant to live it -- full of happiness and stress-free fun.
The 5 Second Rule would be a great addition to the library of anyone who talks about feeling like they've been stuck in a rut recently or someone who may not be the most confident in their ability to be successful in their endeavors.
10. How to Talk to Anyone by Leil Lowndess
In this short, no-nonsense book about social interaction, you will get some great reminders of things that we all learned back in elementary school but somehow seemed to forget. While you may remember learning some of the tips found in this book, there are so many tips listed that everyone could learn something powerful from this book! Tips range from how to answer questions with information that leads to a dead end without shutting down the conversation, how to prepare yourself to meet a new person, and good tricks for adjusting your body language to fit the conversation you're having.
If you have a loved one who works in a position that communicates with others frequently, this is a great gift option.
11. Presence by Amy Cuddy
Amy Cuddy has inspired more than 10 million viewers around the world with her TED Talk about "power poses." In her newest book, Presence: Bringing Your Boldest Self to Your Biggest Challenges, she presents the intriguing research behind power poses and several more fascinating body-mind effects. Then, she goes on to teach you about how to use some simple techniques to free yourself from the fear and anxiety you feel in high-pressure moments, perform at your best no matter what the situation is, and connect with others in an empowering and inspirational way. One reviewer described it as: "Brilliantly researched, impassioned, and accessible, Presence is filled with stories of individuals who learned how to flourish during the stressful moments that once terrified them. Every reader will learn how to approach their biggest challenges with confidence instead of dread, and to leave them with satisfaction instead of regret."
This is a great tool to have in the arsenal of anyone who has a career that involves putting yourself out on a limb for others. Marketers, business owners, or anyone who has that big pitch coming up that could make or break a career would definitely benefit from having read this book.
12. The Conversion Code by Chris Smith
On the more technical side of things, The Conversion Code is all about refining one's ability to capture and close more internet leads than you could imagine. The greatest part of this book isn't the humor or the relatable narrative, but the extremely useful tools that Smith provides you with throughout the book. While the book itself is fairly small, it includes a state-of-the-art, extensively tested and refined sales script to persuade new leads to become clients or customers; hard-earned tips and techniques that built the fortunes of A-list business owners and leaders; unbiased, honest advice on software, platforms, and design strategies from Smith's personal revenue-generating toolkit; and a complete list of the analytics and metrics that you should be focused on for your website, landing pages, email marketing, social media, and sales -- along with the steps to take once you have those numbers.
This book's effect on a business far exceeds its purchase price and would be an extremely valuable and meaningful gift for anyone who is starting a business or expressed anxiety about expanding their business into the online market.
13. The One-Page Marketing Plan by Allan Dib
Another book that leans more on the technical side, The One-Page Marketing Plan is chock full of tools and tips that will help any business owner revitalize or create a marketing strategy. In this book, you will get help with topics like getting new customers, the reason that "big business" style marketing could kill your business, and strategies that work much better for small and medium-size businesses. Along with the book itself, and similar to The Conversion Code, this book comes with a rigorously tested step-by-step process that builds a personalized marketing plan from the ground up -- and it's only one page.
This book would be another valuable and meaningful gift for anyone who is starting a business or expressed interest in revitalizing a business strategy.
14. The Motivation Manifesto by Brendon Burchard
Back into personal narrative books, Brendon Burchard is back at it again with one of his most popular books -- The Motivation Manifesto. It is a poetically ferocious call to reclaim your personal power and start accessing the five freedoms life grants us: time freedom, emotional freedom, social freedom, financial freedom, spiritual freedom. By declaring your intent and independence, stepping into your personal power, and pushing through self-doubt and distraction, Bruchard argues that all of us can achieve our own level of Personal Freedom. As one reviewer put it: "Recalling the revolutionist voices of the past that chose freedom over tyranny, Burchard motivates us to free ourselves from fear and take back our lives once and for all."
As stated earlier with High-Performance Habits, you can access this book on his website and pay only shipping. Simply plug in your email address and access his three most popular books -- High-Performance Habits, The Motivation Manifesto, and The Millionaire Messenger -- and pay only for shipping. These books are valued at $20 each, and you'd be getting each of them for only $7.
15. Do Good: Embracing Brand Citizenship to Fuel Both Purpose and Profit by Anne Bahr Thompson
Buyers today demand more than half-hearted pledges of great products and branding. In this book, you will learn how to actively link great branding strategies with a higher purpose to capture both the wallets and hearts of your target markets. Based on months of research with thousands of consumers, Do Good reports on the findings of Anne Thompson and documents the changes in consumer culture, and then gives you the tools necessary to adapt your business to fit the needs of these changes. By embedding social consciousness into the foundation of a company and being transparent with its target market, a startup has the potential to become a Fortune 500 almost overnight. Packed with examples and the original data Thompson conducted, Do Good highlights the five new rules of business strategy and how to market your business to fit the needs of each one.
This book would make a great gift for business owners, CEOs, marketers, and business strategists who are looking for the most updated research on consumer behavior -- or for someone whose business isn't doing as well as it could be and doesn't understand why.
16. The Dip by Seth Godin
Every new project (or job, or hobby, or relationship) starts out fun. Many then suddenly get really hard, and not much fun at all. Popular business blogger and bestselling author Seth Godin proves that winners are really just the best quitters in his book, The Dip: A Little Book That Teaches You When to Quit (and When to Stick). He guides you through the stages that lead up to the Dip -- that moment when it seems like your life went from really awesome to really hard for no apparent reason -- and explains that, to be a "winner," you must seek out the Dip. Winners realize that "the bigger the barrier, the bigger the reward for getting past it." So, if you can push past the Dip and begin climbing your way back up to a time when your job, project, or relationship is really awesome again, you'll start reaping the benefits of all of that hard work.
As stated in the book summary: Whether you're buying a gift for an intern or a CEO, this fun little book will help readers figure out if they're in a Dip that's worthy of their time, effort, and talents.
17. Get Over Your D*mn Self: The No-BS Blueprint to Building a Life Changing Business by Romi Neustadt
Romi Neustadt takes the time in her book, Get Over Your D*mn Self, to help you build a lucrative direct sales and marketing strategy and create a life with more freedom and flexibility than you ever thought imaginable. As you can probably tell from the title, this book is not for those who have a language sensitivity, but it is an extremely beneficial book that offers readers a chance at the same direct, no-BS coaching style she uses with her own clients. Filled to the brim with humor and playful call-outs, you'll be laughing at phrases like "weak sauce" and "funnel constipation" for days after reading this book, but it's so full of information that you won't have enough room in the margins to mark all of the brilliant tips and tricks she doles out in this extremely humanistic, to-the-point book that will put any business into overdrive.
This book is perfect for any young adults struggling to market themselves or their business ventures to an older generation.
One final book I have to mention is my own, which came out last year by McGraw Hill. The Entrepreneurs Book of Actions: Essential Daily Exercises and Habits for Becoming Wealthier, Smarter, and More Successful will help you learn how to drive sustainable business growth by breaking bad habits--and developing good ones; managing your time and money more effectively; hiring the right people for the right job; motivating your staff to be mission-focused; and helping you create "free" time to feed your innovative side.
Happy book shopping and reading.