Start Here: My top 9 most impactful books for online entrepreneurs and business owners

by | Jan 24, 2024 | 2 comments

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Don’t you love an actionable book – one where you get questions to journal on and concrete action steps to take? Following the prompts of a well-written book can 10x the value of the book you’re reading. Only question is: what books for online entrepreneurs and business owners are worth your time? I’ve got you. 

Books can help us learn from the best of the best. We can meet our heroes of life, business, and mysticism by reading extraordinary books. Books afford you a pique into some of the greatest minds of humanity, help improve your business at a low cost, sharpen your thinking, and introduce you to new people, conferences, heck, entire communities! 

So, let’s see which books any online business owner and entrepreneur MUST read. Having coached hundreds of leaders over the years, I’ve found that even the most masterfully executed strategy is only as powerful as your mindset is. Without powering up your mind, heart, and soul in service of your vision, strategy doesn’t matter (read: strategy matters immensely! But how you implement, and to what end, matters even more). That’s why the following books focus on your inner leadership, your vision for your life, and your money mindset.

Before we get into it: You don’t want to be traveling with a physical library, do you? Get A Kindle book reader and enjoy glare-free screen reading from anywhere. It comes in different sizes, quickly connects to Bluetooth and WiFi, has up to 16 hours of battery capacity, and doesn’t even need to come out of the bag at the airport security check. I’ve had mine for four years and counting. 

Kindle Bookreader

Leading yourself: Becoming a great leader starts with you!

With the rise of online business and remote work, we are required to double down on looking within. Whenever a client launches a new business, especially when that takes place from their own home or from a Cafe in Thailand, their inner demons come up and want to fight. Their ego then puts on a greatly convincing show for the new business owner, showcasing all the things that are wrong with them. Before they know it, their limiting beliefs show up in their website copy, keep them from reaching out to clients, and turn out poorly worded communication that is entirely out of leadership. Leading a business as an online entrepreneur starts with yourself. Read the following five books for online entrepreneurs and business owners to help you ignite your most loving inner leader.

AUTHENTIC SUCCESS: ESSENTIAL LESSONS AND PRACTICES FROM THE WORLD’S LEADING COACHING PROGRAM ON SUCCESS INTELLIGENCE, by Dr. Robert Holden

What does success mean, today? What does enjoyable success mean to you? How do Joy and Success relate to one another? What is your metaphor for success? Robert, my mentor and friend, offers a deeply transformative and revelatory process to redefine what success means (and feels, and looks like) to YOU. He lovingly guides the reader through exercises that draw on his background in narrative psychology, mysticism, and Eastern spirituality. By doing the exercises, you, the leader of your own life, re-align your everyday actions, grind, and pursuits, with the yearnings of your essence-nature. Whereas misguided New Age spiritual teachers might ‘OOHM’ on “following your heart”, Robert taps into the mystical teachings of East and West, combining them with modern leadership practices. It’s a must read for all leaders (and mandatory reading for my clients). 

books for online entrepreneurs and business owners

TIME TO THINK: LISTENING TO IGNITE THE HUMAN MIND, by Nancy Kline

When someone is talking to you, how are you listening? Are you listening to respond, or to listen? If you consider yourself a leader, then you’re in a position to inspire and empower people. Kline argues that the best way to ignite a person’s best thinking, problem-solving skills, and deepest insights is by giving them our fullest attention when they speak. Talk less, listen more, and develop a much deeper understanding of the people around you. Clients, colleagues, teammates, bosses. 

BALANCING ACTS: UNLEASHING THE CREATIVTY OF YOUR LIFE AND WORK, by Daniel Lamarre

“Without Creativity, there is no business,” says the Vice Chairman of Cirque du Soleil. Lamarre has led the world-renowned circus through major expansions, acquisitions, and through the loss of 99% of their revenue during the Covid years. As online entrepreneurs and business owners, we need to be hyper-intentional about creating community amongst our team and customers and continue to lead from an inspired place. Lamarre’s humble tone forces you to become a better leader, negotiator, and a communicator who can evoke unparalleled emotion and ambition. A hidden gem you won’t be able to put down – and a masterclass in innovative leadership. 

books for online entrepreneurs and business owners

THE VISION-DRIVEN LEADER: 10 QUESTIONS TO FOCUS YOUR TEAM AND SCALE YOUR BUSINESS, by Michael Hyatt

How do you inspire through vision? What is the best way to connect strategy to your vision? How do you align your daily actions around your vision? This book is fantastic for any solo online business owner as well as online entrepreneur leading a team. While many books will either focus on creating an engaging vision or the strategy (which can lead many to prioritize one over the other, to their own detriment), Hyatt combines both into a fascinating thought process and workflow. Grab this book and take yourself on a 3 day solo-retreat to work through the book. It will be a great investment in your business. 

THE GO-GIVER: A LITTLE STORY ABOUT A POWERFUL BUSINESS IDEA, by Bob Burg and John David Mann

In form of an easy-to-read parable, this book exclaims that the secret to success is giving. By introducing the success-hungry Joe to wildly successful businessmen, the business guru of the book, Pindar, introduces five main Laws of Success. All these laws are rooted in generosity, a willingness to give freely, and an openness to receive in return. This book is another one that goes far beyond some New Age speech of “give and you shall receive” which has led not few business leaders into bankruptcy. The book might just be the most important business strategy or networking book you’ll ever read. And it only takes two hours. Have yourself a glass of wine as you follow Joe and Pindar. 

Do you own your business, or does your business own you?

The are a huge amount of new skills an entrepreneur must acquire. These range from how to create a website to how to acquire clients and how to do taxes. It is easy to work into the night and over the weekends. I’d like to caution you. 9 out of 10 times, we start businesses in a quest for freedom. Take a moment here and define what freedom truly means to YOU. What is your definition of freedom? What does your business have to do for you? I’ve found that what this question boils down to is external and internal: Efficiency and Integrity. And it is because of this innate quest for freedom which can so easily become elusive, that I am I’m offering the following two books for online entrepreneurs and business owners.

4-HOURS WORK WEEK, by Tim Ferris

Honest to God? I didn’t love the book. Ferris seemed self-absorbed and selfish to me with no moral compass whatsoever. I won’t even provide an affiliate link. But I will say: go buy the book and read it. Skim it. I firmly believe in equitable pay across varying currencies and find that building something bigger than life while living your best life is great. Ferris isn’t the biggest advocate of these things. But he did nail one thing: efficiency. And whether you want to work only four hours a week or need to learn to identify work that you can delegate to an agency or colleague, efficiency is key to realizing your vision. 

THE WAY OF INTEGRITY: FINDING THE PATH TO YOUR TRUTH, by Martha Beck

This book prescribes a path towards authenticity by helping you recognize your innermost truth. Liking the quest for integrity to Dante’s Divine Comedy, the reader learns to recognize when they are out of integrity and how to realign with it. The book is packed with insightful exercises that, when offered to clients and colleagues, can only lead to better employees, higher retention, or longer customer loyalty. In life, Beck will help you lead with your truth. In business, the lessons learned in the book will help you align your business operations to what works for you, regardless of what the gurus might tell you. 

books for online entrepreneurs and business owners

Your Self-worth is affecting your income potential

Money-specific books for online entrepreneurs and business owners are the same as for any entrepreneur. They focus on two distinct things: Your relationship with money and your management of money. You need both. And possibly even more so than if your business wasn’t online: The temptation to fall for make-money-quick schemes might be just too high. And the honest mistake that could occur while registering your off-shore company could be just too fatal. As your inner leader and your vision grow, new strategies and plug-ins will no longer help you bring in more money. Know what will, though? A wealthy relationship with money and a more loving management of money. Hands down, the following are my top picks.

OVERCOMING UNDEREARNING, A 5 STEP PLAN TO A RICHER LIFE, by Barbara Stanny

Ever suspected that you might be sabotaging your income potential? Most of us run a story about money that we picked up in childhood: Money isn’t for me to earn. Money creates nothing but stress. If I make too much money, I will lose all my friends. Stanny has spent years developing her trademarked 5 step plan to help business owners break through income ceilings by examining the unchecked stories that have been keeping them small. If you’re ready to increase your income, or if you’ve got a launch coming up, I recommend making this your bible for a while. A word of the wise: DO THE EXERCISES. Otherwise, it’s just a feel-good book. 

I WILL EACH YOU TO BE RICH, Ramit Sethi

It’s the book that everybody has been raving about. And for good reason. While Stanny helps you up your income potential, Ramit will show you, step by step, how to make that money go much further. He helps you eliminate debt, create savings, set up your investments properly, and create a spending plan that reflects your values in life. As an online business owner, especially as a digital nomad, employing Ramit’s approach to creating a Rich Life, is invaluable. He constantly highlights how his strategies apply to entrepreneurs and business owners with spiky income. Step by step, he helps you grow your money and claim back the fun of spending money. 

Conclusion

That’s it. This is the list of the top 10 most impactful books any online entrepreneur or business owner should read. And re-read, work through, and apply regularly. Which one is your favorite? Let me know in the comments. 

TL;DR: Here are all books I’ve mentioned at one glance:

  1. AUTHENTIC SUCCESS: ESSENTIAL LESSONS AND PRACTICES FROM THE WORLD’S LEADING COACHING PROGRAM ON SUCCESS INTELLIGENCE, by Dr. Robert Holden
  2. TIME TO THINK: LISTENING TO IGNITE THE HUMAN MIND, by Nancy Kline
  3. BALANCING ACTS: UNLEASHING THE CREATIVTY OF YOUR LIFE AND WORK, by Daniel Lamarre 
  4. THE VISION-DRIVEN LEADER: 10 QUESTIONS TO FOCUS YOUR TEAM AND SCALE YOUR BUSINESS, by Michael Hyatt 
  5. THE GO-GIVER: A LITTLE STORY ABOUT A POWERFUL BUSINESS IDEA, by Bob Burg and John David Mann
  6. 4-HOUR WORK WEEK, by Time Ferris
  7. THE WAY OF INTEGRITY: FINDING THE PATH TO YOUR TRUTH, by Martha Beck
  8. OVERCOMING UNDEREARNING, A 5 STEP PLAN TO A RICHER LIFE, by Barbara Stanny
  9. I WILL EACH YOU TO BE RICH, Ramit Sethi 

Before we get into it: You don’t want to be traveling with a physical library, do you? Get A Kindle book reader and enjoy glare-free screen reading from anywhere. It comes in different sizes, quickly connects to Bluetooth and WiFi, has up to 16 hours of battery capacity, and doesn’t even need to come out of the bag at the airport security check. I’ve had mine for four years and counting. 

Kindle Bookreader

2 Comments

  1. Simone

    Your roundup of must-read books for entrepreneurs is stellar!! I read “The Way of Integrity” based on your recommendation, and it was such an insightful read. Beck definitely got me thinking about how to align my actions with my true self, both in life and business. Thank you for the heads up – total game-changer! Can’t wait to plug into the other books on your list.

    Reply
    • Dina-Marie Weineck

      YASSS!!! Beck is the freaking best! This book is such a fun read and such a profound kick in the booty. Go you for working through it.
      love, Dina

      Reply

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