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April 8, 2009

News & Opinion: Inc. Magazine's 30th Anniversary Book Recommendations

By: Dylan Schleicher @ 8:03 PM – Filed under: Management & Workplace Culture

Inc. Magazine is celebrating 30 years of publication this month and as a part of their coverage have put together "The Business Owner's Bookshelf" - 30 books people running small businesses should read.

Here is the list in its entirety:

  1. Against the Gods: The Remarkable Story of Risk, by Peter Bernstein (1996)
  2. The Art of the Start: The Time-Tested, Battle-Hardened Guide for Anyone Starting Anything, by Guy Kawasaki (2004)
  3. The Box: How the Shipping Container Made the World Smaller and the World Economy Bigger, by Marc Levinson (2006)
  4. Brand New: How Entrepreneurs Earned Consumers' Trust from Wedgwood to Dell, by Nancy F. Koehn (2001)
  5. The Dilbert Principle: A Cubicle's-Eye View of Bosses, Meetings, Management Fads, and Other Workplace Afflictions, by Scott Adams (1996)
  6. The E-Myth Revisited: Why Most Small Businesses Don't Work and What to Do About It, by Michael Gerber (1995)
  7. The Effective Executive: The Definitive Guide to Getting the Right Things Done, by Peter Drucker (1967)
  8. The Fifth Discipline: The Art & Practice of the Learning Organization, by Peter Senge (1990)
  9. First, Break All the Rules: What the World's Greatest Managers Do Differently, by Marcus Buckingham and Curt Coffman (1999)
  10. Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap…And Others Don't, by Jim Collins (2001)
  11. The Great Game of Business: The Only Sensible Way to Run a Company, by Jack Stack (1992)
  12. Growing a Business, by Paul Hawken (1987)
  13. Green to Gold: How Smart Companies Use Environmental Strategy to Innovate, Create Value, and Build Competitive Advantage, by Daniel Esty and Andrew Winston (2006)
  14. How to Win Friends and Influence People, by Dale Carnegie (1936)
  15. The Innovator's Dilemma: When New Technologies Cause Great Firms to Fail, by Clayton Christensen (1997)
  16. Intellectual Capital: The New Wealth of Organizations, by Thomas A. Stewart (1997)
  17. The Knack: How Street-Smart Entrepreneurs Learn to Handle Whatever Comes Up, by Norm Brodsky and Bo Burlingham (2008)
  18. Let My People Go Surfing: The Education of a Reluctant Businessman, by Yvon Chouinard (2005)
  19. Made to Stick: Why Some Ideas Survive and Others Don't, by Chip Heath and Dan Heath (2007)
  20. The New New Thing: A Silicon Valley Story, by Michael Lewis (1999)
  21. Nuts! Southwest Airlines' Crazy Recipe for Business and Personal Success, by Kevin Freiberg and Jackie Freiberg (1996)
  22. Ogilvy on Advertising, by David Ogilvy (1983)
  23. On Competition, by Michael Porter (2008)
  24. Personal History, by Katharine Graham (1997)
  25. Pour Your Heart Into It: How Starbucks Built a Company One Cup at a Time, by Howard Schultz and Dori Jones Yang (1997)
  26. Small Giants: Companies That Choose to Be Great Instead of Big, by Bo Burlingham (2005)
  27. Soul of a New Machine, by Tracy Kidder (1981)
  28. The Wealth of Nations, by Adam Smith (1776)
  29. What Management Is: How It Works and Why It's Everyone's Business, by Joan Magretta and Nan Stone (2002)
  30. The Wisdom of Crowds: Why the Many Are Smarter Than the Few and How Collective Wisdom Shapes Business, Economies, Societies and Nations, by James Surowiecki (2004)

Jack and I think it is a pretty good list. Eleven of their 30 books match with selections from The 100 Best. The editors provide some big challenges for readers recommending The Wealth of Nations, On Competition, and The Fifth Discipline. Nuts! and Let My People Go Surfing are great for business owners (also check out Raising The Bar). And their fun add of The Dilbert Principle is a great one, showing us what to do by showing us what not to do.


About Dylan Schleicher


Dylan Schleicher has been a part of the 800-CEO-READ claque since 2003. Even though he's stayed on at the company, he has not stayed put. After beginning in shipping & receiving, he joined customer service and accounting before moving into his current, highly elliptical orbit of duties overseeing the ChangeThis and In the Books websites, the company's annual review of books and in-house design. He lives with his wife and two children in the Washington Heights neighborhood on Milwaukee's West Side.