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Top 10 best business books

Alan Jordan and Ron Immink from Bookbuzz have compiled their Top 10 best business books.

Top 10 best business books

1. Thinking, Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman

The author challenges the rational model of judgment and decision making, and takes us on a groundbreaking tour of the mind He exposes the extraordinary capabilities—and also the faults and biases—of fast thinking, and reveals the pervasive influence of intuitive impressions on our thoughts and behaviour.

Those who like behavioural economics books like “Nudge”, “Black Swan” and “The Tipping Point” will love this book. System 1 is largely unconscious and it makes snap judgments based upon our memory of similar events and our emotions. System 2 is painfully slow, and is the process by which we consciously check the facts and think carefully and rationally. Problem is, System 2 is easily distracted and hard to engage, and System 1 is wrong as often as it is right. System 1 is easily swayed by our emotions.

2. The Innovator’s DNA: mastering the Five skills of disruptive innovators by Jeff Dyer, Hal Gregersen and Clayton M.Christensen

Perhaps one of the most important questions facing business today, especially those seeking more innovation, is:

  • What characteristics or attributes signal innovation capability in an individual?
  • Could we distil what makes Steve Jobs, Thomas Edison and other leading innovators so successful?

In The Innovator’s DNA, authors Dyer, Gregersen and Christensen set out to uncover what makes good innovators tick, and separate the myth from the observable science. Creativity is thinking up new things. Innovation is doing new things. The message is clear: creativity is all very well for intellectuals and bohemians sitting around on bean bags, but it takes an innovator to get things done.

3. Business Model Generation by Alexander Osterwalder and Yves Pigmar

A business model describes the rationale of how an organisation creates, delivers, and captures value.

Not the typical strategy or management book. Designed to convey the essentials of what you need to know, quickly, simply, and in a visual format. Examples are presented pictorially and the content is complemented with exercises and workshop scenarios you can use immediately. Rather than writing a conventional book about business model innovation, the authors have tried to design a practical guide for visionaries, game changers, and challengers eager to design or reinvent business models.

4. The Strategist: Be the leader your business needs by Cynthia A Montgomery

Good book on strategy no BS. Applicable for both SME and MNC. Choc full of case studies and anecdotes. The author ran the strategy course for Entrepreneurs at Harvard

  • Does your company matter?
  • That’s the most important question every business leader must answer.
  • If you closed your doors today, would your customers suffer any real loss?
  • How long would it take, and how difficult would it be, for them to find another firm that could meet those needs as well as you did?

Most likely, you don’t think about your company and what it does in quite this way. Even if you’ve hired strategy consultants, or spent weeks developing a strategic plan, the question probably still gives you pause.

5. Launch: How to Quickly Propel your Business Beyond the Competition by Michael A Stelzner

Consumers no longer trust traditional marketing. Even though the trust in marketing has changed, people have not. They still prefer to do business with people that they know and trust.

Content marketing allows you to build trust with consumers before you begin trying to sell them. Then they are more likely to buy from you because then have become to trust you and believe that you can help them solve whatever problem they may be facing.

6. Life’s a Pitch by Philip Delves Broughton

It brings nobility back into sales. The book brings you to a journey of selling. The history, the psychology and the philosophy. The good, the bad and the ugly. Without too much judgement. He does appear to be sceptical about marketing, but then who isn’t?

The book follows the author across the world meeting legends in sales. He starts with the bazaars in Morocco and finishes with Salesforce. In between he shares the lessons from his conversations with and research into sales people.

  • From storytelling to recruitment.
  • From metrics to NLP.
  • From “The secret” to marketing.
  • From religion to customer care.
  • From ego to authenticity.

7. Reality is Broken: Why Games Make Us Better and How They Can Change the World by Jane McGonigal

If you like The Shallows, Overconnected, Fun Inc, Workplace 2020, Generation Einstein etc, you will love this book. Should be compulsory reading for every entrepreneur.

It confirms a lot in “The kids are all right”. Gaming is good for you and good for your children. Less depressed, more social, better at solving problems, happier. The more we seek epic meaning and emotional award in gaming, the more we seek them in real life

8. Demand: Creating What People Love Before They Know They Want It by Adrian J.Slywotzky with Karl Weber

Should you build a company based on demand or just focus on something that you enjoy?  For true demand creators, finding customer problems to fix is what they really enjoy. There’s nothing more exciting than seeing tremendous customer response to your offer.

As Henk Kwakman of Nespresso said: “Discover a problem, and you discover a business.”


  • Sansa
  • iPod
  • Sony Reader
  • Kindle
  • Civic Hybrid
  • Prius
  • Hertz
  • Connect
  • Zipcar
  • Illy
  • Nespresso
  • Air France
  • Eurostar
  • MySpace
  • Facebook
  • Blockbuster
  • Netflix
  • British Airways
  • Virgin
  • Any toy set
  • Lego
  • Any move studio
  • Pixar
  • Yahoo search
  • Google
  • Any online retailer
  • Amazon

9. Taking People with You: The Only Way to Make BIG Things Happen by David Novak

Getting inside the head of those you need is your starting place for taking people with you What perceptions, habits, or beliefs of my target audience do I need to build, change, or reinforce to reach my goal?
“It starts with discussions. It starts with engagement. Sometimes you Have to go slow to go fast.”

Get inside the heads of your people – You can’t convince them of anything until you see the world from their perspective.

10. Management in 10 Words by Terry Leahy

Transformed Tesco from a tired and tatty supermarket to the biggest company in Britain — the supermarket that takes around £1 of every £7 spent in the UK Street? A bank, a £1 billion-a-year clothing business, the UK’s biggest internet retailer and one of top five retailers for books, toys, electrical equipment and home products? Its global empire — the shops in Asia, Australasia, Europe and America. The list is endless. With Leahy at the helm, Tesco grew into a giant worth £35 billion.

In 1950s Stores held 2,000 items Now – 40,000 -It cost you 40% of your income. Now – 8%.

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