The best books about becoming a well-rounded entrepreneur and one book that makes you question it all…

Who am I?

I am an entrepreneur and an investor with a background in engineering from Harvey Mudd College and University of Southern California. I co-founded Deviate Labs, a boutique growth marketing agency with my business partner, Chad Riddersen. Our growth marketing agency leverages my engineering pedigree and my business partner’s investment pedigree for a unique approach to marketing that we lend to our consulting engagements and our own initiatives. Together, we co-authored the book, Growth Hacking: Silicon Valley’s Best Kept Secret. I am passionate about investing in and developing both people and businesses and these books I recommend have helped me become better at doing so.

I wrote...

Growth Hacking: Silicon Valley's Best Kept Secret

By Raymond Fong, Chad Riddersen,

Book cover of Growth Hacking: Silicon Valley's Best Kept Secret

What is my book about?

It’s a crash course on marketing in today’s fast-paced digital age. Raymond and Chad wrote it specifically with startup founders and business owners in mind who have little marketing experience but appreciate its importance in their business growth. It provides a powerful framework called the Automated Sales Process™ (ASP™) that helps readers contextualize marketing in a systematic manner and provides a roadmap for execution. 

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The books I picked & why

Book cover of The Ultimate Sales Machine: Turbocharge Your Business with Relentless Focus on 12 Key Strategies

Raymond Fong Why did I love this book?

I appreciate foundational books that can stand the test of time and this book is one such book in the realm of business. Not only does it lay out insightful business-building strategies that help create efficiency and longevity in your business, you’ll also find golden nuggets of insights that apply to marketing as well. Some of the systematic approaches outlined in the book provided inspiration for our own boo.

By Chet Holmes,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked The Ultimate Sales Machine as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?


The bestselling business playbook for turbocharging any organization, updated for modern audiences with new and never-before-seen material

Every single day 3,076 businesses shut their doors. But what if you could create the finest, most profitable and best-run version of your business without wasting precious dollars on a thousand different strategies? When The Ultimate Sales Machine first published in 2007, legendary sales expert Chet Holmes gave us the key to do just that. All you need is to focus on twelve key areas of improvement—and practice them over and over with pigheaded discipline.

Now, a decade later,…

Book cover of Pitch Anything: An Innovative Method for Presenting, Persuading, and Winning the Deal

Raymond Fong Why did I love this book?

Once in a blue moon, a book comes along and shatters long-standing traditions that establishments have been following without question. Pitch Anything is one such “once in a blue moon” book. It teaches tactics and strategies from the field of neuroeconomics that illuminate new ways of presenting, pitching, and marketing your ideas and offers. I leverage this book’s “big ideas” in many aspects of our marketing endeavors.

By Oren Klaff,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Pitch Anything as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Gold Medal Winner--Tops Sales World's Best Sales and Marketing Book

"Fast, fun and immensely practical."
-JOE SULLIVAN, Founder, Flextronics

"Move over Neil Strauss and game theory. Pitch Anything reveals the next big thing in social dynamics: game for business."
-JOSH WHITFORD, Founder, Echelon Media

"What do supermodels and venture capitalists have in common?They hear hundreds of pitches a year. Pitch Anything makes sure you get the nod (or wink) you deserve."
-RALPH CRAM, Investor

"Pitch Anything offers a new method that will differentiate you from the rest of the pack."
-JASON JONES, Senior Vice President, Jones Lang LaSalle

"If you…

Book cover of Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap and Others Don't

Raymond Fong Why did I love this book?

Good to Great studies some of the greatest success stories in business with the aim of identifying patterns. The author lays out concrete patterns for the readers with the hope that they can strive to replicate these patterns to create long-lasting successful companies for themselves. In building our Growth Marketing agency, Deviate Labs, my co-founder and I bear these lessons in mind daily.

By Jim Collins,

Why should I read it?

11 authors picked Good to Great as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Can a good company become a great one? If so, how?

After a five-year research project, Jim Collins concludes that good to great can and does happen. In this book, he uncovers the underlying variables that enable any type of organisation to make the leap from good to great while other organisations remain only good. Rigorously supported by evidence, his findings are surprising - at times even shocking - to the modern mind.

Good to Great achieves a rare distinction: a management book full of vital ideas that reads as well as a fast-paced novel. It is widely regarded…

Book cover of Attached: The New Science of Adult Attachment and How It Can Help You Find—And Keep—Love

Raymond Fong Why did I love this book?

What good is building a business without fulfilling relationships? This book will help you with building and fostering fulfilling relationships. This is one book I wish I had read much earlier in life because had I done so, I would have acquired a better mental model when it comes to establishing and maintaining relationships - romantic, professional, and everything in between.

By Amir Levine, Rachel Heller,

Why should I read it?

6 authors picked Attached as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

“Over a decade after its publication, one book on dating has people firmly in its grip.”
—The New York Times

We already rely on science to tell us what to eat, when to exercise, and how long to sleep. Why not use science to help us improve our relationships? In this revolutionary book, psychiatrist and neuroscientist Dr. Amir Levine and Rachel Heller scientifically explain why why some people seem to navigate relationships effortlessly, while others struggle.

Discover how an understanding of adult attachment—the most advanced relationship science in existence today—can help us find and sustain love. Pioneered by psychologist John…

Book cover of Fooled by Randomness: The Hidden Role of Chance in Life and in the Markets

Raymond Fong Why did I love this book?

It’s always good to stay humble and this book helps us as business owners and investors do that. This book serves as a good reminder of how big of a role both 1. Chance and 2. Irrationality play in our everyday lives. It teaches us how to embrace this fact and leverage it to our advantage in life. Don’t read this book if you appreciate thinking in a bubble along with the masses.

By Nassim Nicholas Taleb,

Why should I read it?

6 authors picked Fooled by Randomness as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Everyone wants to succeed in life. But what causes some of us to be more successful than others? Is it really down to skill and strategy - or something altogether more unpredictable?

This book is the bestselling sensation that will change the way you think about business and the world. It is all about luck: more precisely, how we perceive luck in our personal and professional experiences. Nowhere is this more obvious than in the markets - we hear an entrepreneur has 'vision' or a trader is 'talented', but all too often their performance is down to chance rather than…

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The Edge of Too Late

By Jan Sikes,

Book cover of The Edge of Too Late

Jan Sikes Author Of The Edge of Too Late

New book alert!

Who am I?

Author Avid reader Lover of Music Astral Traveler Tarot Reader Grandmother

Jan's 3 favorite reads in 2023

What is my book about?

What's the point of having it all when you have no one to share it with? Brandon Miller has everything—except a commitment from the woman he loves. Angela Cooper has deep scars from a previous marriage. She's not interested in a do-over with Brandon or anyone.

Yet, he arranges a romantic getaway to the historic Harbor Pointe Inn, where he plans to propose. Angela's got her camera in hand and ghosts on her mind, but they arrive to find a much more tangible horror. Accident or foul play? Angela becomes the next target, and when suspects can be worldly or otherworldly, danger and secrets lurk everywhere. Poised at the perilous edge of too late, Angela and Brandon face the fight of their lives.

The Edge of Too Late

By Jan Sikes,

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