100 books like On Entrepreneurship and Impact

By Desh Deshpande,

Here are 100 books that On Entrepreneurship and Impact fans have personally recommended if you like On Entrepreneurship and Impact. Shepherd is a community of 10,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of Deep Work: Rules for Focused Success in a Distracted World

Havard Mela Author Of Digital Discipline: Choosing Life in the Digital Age of Excess

From my list on how we get distracted and how to reclaim your attention.

Why am I passionate about this?

As someone who has felt the consequences of spending too much time online on distractions, I am compelled to share how much better life can be when we are conscious of the time we spend online. In my early twenties, I experienced digital addiction. I managed to turn things around by cultivating discipline and finding purpose in life. In the process, I developed a deep interest in neuroscience and psychology. My book explains how you can take conscious control of your life in a practical way based on my experience backed up by research.

Havard's book list on how we get distracted and how to reclaim your attention

Havard Mela Why did Havard love this book?

Deep Work is an excellent book for realizing how detrimental the typical employee’s work habits of checking email every 5 minutes, constant meetings, and other distractions are to their ability to perform high-quality work. Newport also shares good suggestions for reclaiming your focus and doing what he calls “deep work.” 

The book strongly advocates for the importance of having as much time as possible without distractions to achieve flow and perform optimally. This book helped me become much more conscious about how I work.

By Cal Newport,

Why should I read it?

8 authors picked Deep Work as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Many modern knowledge workers now spend most of their brain power battling distraction and interruption, whether because of the incessant pinging of devices, noisy open-plan offices or the difficulty of deciding what deserves your attention the most. When Cal Newport coined the term 'deep work' on his popular blog, Study Hacks, in 2012, he found the concept quickly hit a nerve. Most of us, after all, are excruciatingly familiar with shallow work instead - distractedly skimming the surface of our workload and never getting to the important part. Newport began exploring the methods and mindset that foster a practice of…


Book cover of Zero to One: Notes on Startups, or How to Build the Future

Michael D. Watkins Author Of The Six Disciplines of Strategic Thinking: Leading Your Organization Into the Future

From my list on books for aspiring strategic thinkers.

Why am I passionate about this?

I have devoted my career to helping leaders navigate challenging transitions into new roles, build their teams, and transform their organizations. Strategic thinking is a key foundation of my work as an executive coach and advisor at Genesis Advisers and a professor at the IMD Business School. Whether executives are taking new roles or driving large-scale transformations, they must be able to rapidly analyze the context, craft good visions and strategies, and mobilize people to realize them. I try to equip the leaders I work with with the mental frameworks, tools, and skillsets to adapt and succeed in the first 90 days and beyond.

Michael's book list on books for aspiring strategic thinkers

Michael D. Watkins Why did Michael love this book?

I liked that this book highlighted how supposedly tried-and-true approaches to innovation fail to deliver results.

The book’s insights about how to drive radical innovation informed the advice I now give executives about how to approach organizational transformation, starting with an ambitious vision, communicating the “why,” and enlisting great people to go on the journey with them.

It helped me to understand that building organizations to develop disruptive technologies requires leaders to envision things that may sound crazy until they are realized. 

By Peter Thiel, Blake Masters,

Why should I read it?

5 authors picked Zero to One as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

What Valuable Company Is Nobody Building? The next Bill Gates will not build an operating system. The next Larry Page or Sergey Brin won't make a search engine. If you are copying these guys, you aren't learning from them. It's easier to copy a model than to make something new: doing what we already know how to do takes the world from 1 to n, adding more of something familiar. Every new creation goes from 0 to 1. This book is about how to get there. "Peter Thiel has built multiple breakthrough companies, and Zero to One shows how". (Elon…


Book cover of Be Your Own Brand: A Breakthrough Formula for Standing Out from the Crowd

Ganesh Vancheeswaran Author Of The Underage CEOs: Fascinating Stories of Young Indians Who Became CEOs in Their Twenties

From my list on the essentials of entrepreneurship.

Why am I passionate about this?

I left the corporate pigeonhole in 2015 and flew out into the Great Expanse. Ever since, I have been a catalyst for people’s self-expression across different media and formats. My work is a direct consequence of this motivation. I am a person branding coach, writer, editor & book coach and voiceover artist. I prefer depth over width, silence over noise, calm over chaos. My thinking is a blend of structure and free flow. My work is more than just work to me: it is a core part of my being. Being of a contemplative nature, I often ask myself big questions about value- creation, impact, empathy, collaboration, etc. I live in the Indian city of Bangalore (Bengaluru) with my family.

Ganesh's book list on the essentials of entrepreneurship

Ganesh Vancheeswaran Why did Ganesh love this book?

I am a person branding coach. I help people build their person (aka individual) brands. I know that the single most potent asset of every entrepreneur is their person brand. The more distinctive this is, and the more convincingly the person communicates it, the better for them and their business. Your person brand signals who you are, what you do, your core values, and why someone should work with you, instead of with someone else. David McNally and Karl Speak examine this concept threadbare and, in simple language, explain how you can build your brand as an individual.

By David McNally, Karl D. Speak,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Be Your Own Brand as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In this second edition of their classic book on personal brand, David McNally and Karl Speak show that developing a personal brand is not about constructing a contrived image. Rather, it is a process of discovering who you really are and what you aspire to be. The hallmark insight of this new edition is that the best way to establish a strong and memorable brand is to make a positive difference in the lives of others through making lasting impressions that build trusting relationships.

McNally and Speak take you through the process of identifying the key components of your brand,…


Book cover of When to Jump: If the Job You Have Isn't the Life You Want

Ganesh Vancheeswaran Author Of The Underage CEOs: Fascinating Stories of Young Indians Who Became CEOs in Their Twenties

From my list on the essentials of entrepreneurship.

Why am I passionate about this?

I left the corporate pigeonhole in 2015 and flew out into the Great Expanse. Ever since, I have been a catalyst for people’s self-expression across different media and formats. My work is a direct consequence of this motivation. I am a person branding coach, writer, editor & book coach and voiceover artist. I prefer depth over width, silence over noise, calm over chaos. My thinking is a blend of structure and free flow. My work is more than just work to me: it is a core part of my being. Being of a contemplative nature, I often ask myself big questions about value- creation, impact, empathy, collaboration, etc. I live in the Indian city of Bangalore (Bengaluru) with my family.

Ganesh's book list on the essentials of entrepreneurship

Ganesh Vancheeswaran Why did Ganesh love this book?

I was thinking of writing a book like this when I saw it in a bookstore! Someone had already written it! It tells us how various people from diverse backgrounds chucked their profession or job (because they didn't like it or didn't find it suited to themselves) to do what they really wanted to do. 

I can relate strongly to this book because this is what I did too, a few years ago. The chapters are written in the first person by the people who jumped. This gives the reader a greater sense of live action. 

Each story has a lesson or two. Read a story, mull over what you learned from it, and then move to the next one. This book should help you set the "caged bird of your heart" free. 

By Mike Lewis,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked When to Jump as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

If you're at a crossroads, this is the book you need to read to begin chasing your dreams. Includes a foreword by Sheryl Sandberg.

Do you have a little voice in your head telling you to pursue the thing you love? Leaving a comfortable job to pursue a passion is a brave, bold move - but it's far from impossible. In this inspiring read When to Jump founder Mike Lewis has curated a community of people to share their stories about taking the leap into the unknown - people from all walks of life who left the safe inertia of…


Book cover of Grassroots Innovation: Minds On The Margin Are Not Marginal Minds

Dinesh C. Sharma Author Of The Outsourcer: The Story of India's IT Revolution

From my list on the history of modern India.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am a journalist who has strayed into book writing with a particular interest in the history of post-independent and contemporary India. My interest in this subject developed as an offshoot of reporting on landmark changes during the period of economic liberalization in the 1990s. One of the astounding stories of this period was the rise of the technology industry and the outsourcing business. A deeper study of this took me back to the period of independence in 1947 and decades before it.  

Dinesh's book list on the history of modern India

Dinesh C. Sharma Why did Dinesh love this book?

The discourse on modern India is often about achievements in science and technology, R&D in national laboratories, and industry. However, in a country of one billion plus people, innovation is happening not just in formal sectors. Ordinary people – farmers, teachers, students, artisans, school dropouts, homemakers – are constantly innovating to solve everyday problems using frugal means. The book is an account of spotting grassroots innovations, nurturing them, and building networks with formal systems and markets. It is critical to understand this process for a deeper appreciation of contemporary India. 

By Anil K. Gupta,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Grassroots Innovation as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A moral dilemma gripped Anil K. Gupta when he was invited by the Bangladeshi government to help restructure their agricultural on-farm research sector in 1985. He noticed how the marginalized farmers were being paid poorly for their otherwise unmatched knowledge. The gross injustice of this constant imbalance led Gupta to found what would turn into a resounding social and ethical movement-the Honey Bee Network-bringing together and elevating thousands of grassroots innovators.
For over two decades, Gupta has travelled through rural lands, along with hundreds of volunteers of the Network, unearthing innovations by the ranks-from the famed Mitti Cool refrigerator to…


Book cover of Chasing Innovation: Making Entrepreneurial Citizens in Modern India

Mircea Raianu Author Of Tata: The Global Corporation That Built Indian Capitalism

From my list on capitalism in 21st century India.

Why am I passionate about this?

I'm a historian of global capitalism and South Asia, writing about corporations as they are and how they could be. I've looked at India with the eyes of an outsider, drawing on my experiences growing up in 1990s Eastern Europe during a time of political upheaval and shock privatizations as the old communist order crumbled. Having witnessed the rise of a new class of monopolists and oligarchs in its stead, I became interested in the many different ways capitalists exercise power in society over time and around the world, and how we as ordinary citizens relate to them. I'm now interested in thinkers, activists, and entrepreneurs who have tried to experiment with alternatives

Mircea's book list on capitalism in 21st century India

Mircea Raianu Why did Mircea love this book?

A key aspect of the “India story,” as described on the macro level by Kaur, is entrepreneurship and the ethos of jugaad (innovating by making do). The idea of India as the new Silicon Valley has captured the global imagination, while the creative use of technology promises to solve longstanding social and economic problems within the country. Lilly Irani’s study questions the dominant framework of “entrepreneurial citizenship” among the new middle classes and the centrality of design practice to India’s current development model. This is another stellar example of interdisciplinary scholarship, based on ethnographic fieldwork at a Delhi design studio and drawing on the author’s background in computer science. 

By Lilly Irani,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Chasing Innovation as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A vivid look at how India has developed the idea of entrepreneurial citizens as leaders mobilizing society and how people try to live that promise

Can entrepreneurs develop a nation, serve the poor, and pursue creative freedom, all while generating economic value? In Chasing Innovation, Lilly Irani shows the contradictions that arise as designers, engineers, and businesspeople frame development and governance as opportunities to innovate. Irani documents the rise of "entrepreneurial citizenship" in India over the past seventy years, demonstrating how a global ethos of development through design has come to shape state policy, economic investment, and the middle class…


Book cover of Startup: A Silicon Valley Adventure

G. Pascal Zachary Author Of Showstopper! The Breakneck Race to Create Windows NT and the Next Generation at Microsoft

From my list on the human dimension of writing computer code.

Why am I passionate about this?

The author was the chief Silicon Valley writer for The Wall Street Journal during the first of the 1990s. He went on to become an acclaimed scholar in the history of science, engineering, and innovation. At the peak of his journalism career, the Boston Globe described Zachary as the most talented reporter on the Journal's staff. Zachary went on to write technology and innovation columns for The New York Times, Technology Review, and Spectrum magazineZachary has also taught courses on science and technology studies at Stanford University, UC Berkeley, and Arizona State University, where he was a professor from 2010-2020. He lives in northern California. 

G.'s book list on the human dimension of writing computer code

G. Pascal Zachary Why did G. love this book?

A singular account by the project leader of an ambitious effort to create a pathbreaking software program, Startup is Kaplan’s splendid chronicle of his company’s visionary pursuit of merging the pen with the computer. With a doctorate in computer science from the University of Pennsylvania and a slew of connections in Silicon Valley, Kaplan seemed well-placed for success. But while saddening to him and his team, the failure of Go, his software company, made for a valuable story about the perils and possibilities of dreaming big in computer code.

The book is filled with valuable anecdotes and lessons from code-writers and includes a memorable line that embodies the highs and lows of Kaplan’s experience. Flush with confidence, he had named his company Go, and on the day the assets of his code-child were sold at auction, he wrote: “I had to accept that impossible, final truth: Go was gone. Six…

By Jerry Kaplan,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Startup as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Kaplan, a well-known figure in the computer industry, founded GO Corporation in 1987, and for several years it was one of the hottest new ventures in the Valley. Startup tells the story of Kaplan's wild ride: how he assembled a brilliant but fractious team of engineers, software designers, and investors; pioneered the emerging market for hand-held computers operated with a pen instead of a keyboard; and careened from crisis to crisis without ever losing his passion for a revolutionary idea. Along the way, Kaplan vividly recreates his encounters with eccentric employees, risk-addicted venture capitalists, and industry giants such as Bill…


Book cover of The Monk and the Riddle: The Education of a Silicon Valley Entrepreneur

Kathleen Allen Author Of Entrepreneurship For Dummies

From my list on inspiring you to get off your butt and start a business.

Why am I passionate about this?

I have a real passion for entrepreneurship, so much so that I married an entrepreneur and produced two children who became entrepreneurs. During my 25 years as a professor in the Greif Entrepreneurship Center at the University of Southern California, one of the top programs in the U.S., I had the privilege of inspiring and mentoring hundreds of new entrepreneurs. I found my passion in technology businesses. I had the business skills needed to help scientists and engineers raise funding, bring their inventions to market, and build their companies. I managed to start and run four ventures of my own as well as write several books about entrepreneurship.

Kathleen's book list on inspiring you to get off your butt and start a business

Kathleen Allen Why did Kathleen love this book?

I absolutely love this book! It’s an easy read, reads like a novel, but it’s packed with very valuable lessons on entrepreneurship, venture capital, and leadership.

The story is told through a conversation between a venture capitalist (Komisar) and two young entrepreneurs who are planning to start a business for all the wrong reasons. It’s humorous, touching, and very entertaining. I laughed a lot.

In the end, you learn that a business needs much more than nuts and bolts. It needs heart and soul.

Equally as important as what you learn about startups, the story will teach you how to avoid the Deferred Life Plan, putting off what you want to do, and instead live your life with passion.

By Randy Komisar, Kent Lineback,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Monk and the Riddle as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

This book describes how one Silicon Valley insider has blazed a path of professional - and personal - success playing the game by his own rules. Silicon Valley is filled with garage-to-riches stories and hot young entrepreneurs with big ideas. Yet even in this place where the exceptional is common, Randy Komisar is a breed apart. Currently a "Virtual CEO" who provides "leadership on demand" for several renowned companies, Komisar was recently described by the "Washington Post" as a "combined professional mentor, minister without portfolio, in-your-face investor, trouble-shooter and door opener." But even more interesting than what he does is…


Book cover of Unreasonable Success and How to Achieve It: Unlocking the 9 Secrets of People Who Changed the World

Jodie Cook Author Of Ten Year Career: Reimagine Business, Design Your Life, Fast Track Your Freedom

From my list on ambitious entrepreneurs.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am a post-exit entrepreneur who writes books and articles about entrepreneur psychology and how to run a business without it running you. At 22, I started an agency that I ran for ten years before selling it in 2021. During that time I made countless mistakes, learned from them, and figured out how to run a successful business while living an extraordinary life. I write about how other entrepreneurs can do the same. I refuse to believe you have to compromise between work and life. I think you can do work that you love while traveling the world, prioritizing health, and having a great time. 

Jodie's book list on ambitious entrepreneurs

Jodie Cook Why did Jodie love this book?

I love this book! The author has studied world-class performers in every field to find trends and share his insights across nine landmarks. After reading, you will feel confident that you have the potential to be one of those high achievers he speaks about! Koch has successfully identified the steps to achieving success and provides a blueprint for how to go about it. This book is full of ideas, insights, and inspiration that will help you realize your own unreasonable success. It's an invaluable resource to anyone looking to make a big impact.

By Richard Koch,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Unreasonable Success and How to Achieve It as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Can We Map Success?

Successful people typically don’t plan their success. Instead they develop a unique philosophy or attitude that works for them. They stumble across strategies which are shortcuts to success, and latch onto them. Events hand them opportunities they could not have anticipated. Often their peers with equal or greater talent fail while they succeed. It is too easy to attribute success to inherent, unstoppable genius.

Bestselling author and serial entrepreneur Richard Koch charts a map of success, identifying the nine key attitudes and strategies can propel anyone to new heights of accomplishment:

Self-belief

Olympian Expectations

Transforming Experiences…


Book cover of A Beautiful Constraint: How to Transform Your Limitations Into Advantages, and Why It's Everyone's Business

Chris Shipley Author Of The Empathy Advantage: Leading the Empowered Workforce

From my list on giving first-time managers the confidence to lead.

Why am I passionate about this?

I found myself leading a newsroom in my mid-20s. No one took me aside and told me how to lead a group of ambitious reporters, most of whom were half-again my age. Maybe that’s the same for you. There are lots of leadership books, and it’s easy to go astray (A fellow editor quoted Machiavelli a lot; it didn’t work out well for him). Instead, I found good guidance in authors who advised me to be authentic, think differently, and lead with compassion. Many years have since passed, and I’ve had the privilege to lead great teams and mentor many young leaders. We always start with being more human.

Chris' book list on giving first-time managers the confidence to lead

Chris Shipley Why did Chris love this book?

No matter what field you are in or the mission of your team, leadership is about navigating constraints, identifying obstacles, solving problems, and searching for breakthrough innovation.

It can be frustrating, and it can be, well, beautiful, especially when overcoming those constraints delivers new growth for you and your team and new value for your organization. Packed with stories and smart strategies, this book will help you see problems for what they are - opportunities, and give you the tools and the courage to face them straight on.

By Adam Morgan, Mark Barden,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked A Beautiful Constraint as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

An inspiring yet practical guide for transforming limitations into opportunities A Beautiful Constraint: How to Transform Your Limitations Into Advantages And Why It's Everyone's Business Now is a book about everyday, practical inventiveness, designed for the constrained times in which we live. It describes how to take the kinds of issues that all of us face today lack of time, money, resources, attention, know-how and see in them the opportunity for transformation of oneself and one's organization's fortunes. The ideas in the book are based on the authors' extensive work as business consultants, and are brought to life in 35…


5 book lists we think you will like!

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