The world's most successful tech startup founders read a lot of books. In fact, according to Jim Kwik, a leading speed-reading coach, the average CEO reads four to five books per month. In most instances, these books relate to business development, personal development, and growth hacking.
"As a tech entrepreneur, you want to learn from the best," says Forbes contributor Murray Newlands. "Countless entrepreneurs have launched startups before you, and this is not the time to go it alone and try to lone-wolf it. Some of the best tech founders in the world have written books imparting years of wisdom so that someone else just like you can learn from their mistakes."
To stay on top of the latest industry trends, shorten learning curves, and outpace competitors, RocketSpace recommends the following books for growth-oriented tech entrepreneurs.
Top 6 Books Every Tech Entrepreneur Should Read
In Startupland, Mikkel Svane, CEO at Zendesk, shares a special behind-the-scenes look into his company. Svane discusses the importance of failure, why a boring product can be the most exciting, and why giving back to the community is just as important as your bottom line. Today, Zendesk has grown to become one of the most successful SaaS companies in the world. In fact, the company's stock recently reached a record high at $42.62 per share, a 46.85 percent return. Startupland is an indispensable read for all tech founders and entrepreneurs interested in learning how to scale like a tech giant. In the book, Svane shares practical advice on hiring, navigating difficult daily decisions, and creating a fulfilling business.
"If you are building a company or thinking about building a company, never forget that relationships are the most important building block. Care about your customers, your employees, your investors, and your community, and build lasting relationships with them. That's more important than ever, and it's the only way to build a lasting business — and a fantastic life." - Mikkel Svane
In Conscious Capitalism, John Mackey, co-founder at Whole Foods Market, and Raj Sisodia, co-founder at Conscious Capitalism, Inc., explain how they built a business that serves the interests of all major stakeholders including customers, employees, and investors. As such, the book reimagines the word "capitalism" and encourages readers to infuse collaboration and positivity into their businesses. The book also provides examples of value-driven management styles used by the world's business leaders including Southwest Airlines, Google, and Amazon. According to Mackey and Sisodia, these conscious leadership styles allow businesses to reach their full potential and create more positive work environments.
"Together, business leaders can liberate the extraordinary power of business and capitalism to create a world in which all people live lives of purpose, love, and creativity — a world of compassion, freedom, and prosperity. This is our vision for Conscious Capitalism." - John Mackey
In Your One Word, entrepreneur and social media sensation Evan Carmichael empowers readers to create mission-oriented businesses by adopting a simple motto — one that encapsulates your purpose and passion as a business leader. Founders can use this smart and actionable guide to "find their one word," take control of their businesses, and create a more fulfilling business and life. At 22, Carmichael raised more than $15 million in venture capital. Later, he founded the Evan Carmichael Communications Group. He was recently named one of Inc. Magazine's Top 100 Great Leadership Speakers for Your Next Conference. Your One Word inspires readers to create businesses filled with intent, focus, and fervor.
"You've never read a book like this. The powerful secret in this book is open to you. It will help you make sense of your business, your decisions, and your search for meaning. It will help you unlock your potential and create a new world that you didn't know existed. You'll have the motivation, purpose, and understanding you need to finally achieve your goals and do something important." - Evan Carmichael
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In Hooked: How to Build Habit-forming Products, best-selling author Nir Eyal seeks to answer one simple question: Why do products fail? In the book, Eyal talks about his four-step process for building the world's most successful and habit-forming products. Through consecutive "hook cycles," Eyal demonstrates how companies can leverage psychology and user experience to repeat business without costly advertising campaigns, marketing programs, or aggressive customer outreach strategies. Hooked is for product managers, designers, marketers, startup founders, and entrepreneurs seeking next-level strategies to build great products.
"Many entrepreneurs fall into the trap of building products that are only marginally better than existing solutions, hoping their innovation will be good enough to woo customers away from existing products. But when it comes to shaking consumer' old habits, these naive entrepreneurs often find that better products don't always win — especially if a large number of users have already adopted a competing product." - Nir Eyal
In The Upstarts, Brad Stone, senior executive editor for Technology Bloomberg News, explores the rise of Airbnb and Uber. With detailed insider accounts, the book chronicles the sharing economy's effects on the hotel and transportation industries. In the spirit of Silicon Valley leaders like Steve Jobs and Bill Gates, The Upstarts explores an all-new generation of disruptive tech visionaries. The book offers actionable takeaways and lessons learned from industry-leading tech titans on their turbulent path towards growth. The Upstarts is a great read for aspiring entrepreneurs and innovators eager to scale like the biggest names in tech.
"If you want to build a truly great company you have got to ride a really big wave. And you’ve got to be able to look at market waves and technology waves in a different way than other folks and see it happening sooner, know how to position yourself out there, prepare yourself, pick the right surfboard — in other words, bring the right management team in, build the right platform underneath you. Only then can you ride a truly great wave." - Brad Stone
In The Industries of the Future, Alec Ross, former senior advisor for innovation to the Secretary of State, provides a comprehensive look at the tech industry's most significant advancements including artificial intelligence, cybersecurity, big data, and genomics. Ross shares insights from a surprising mix of influential global leaders including defense expert David Petraeus. Founders can use the insights found in this book to identify new areas of investment and navigate the ever-changing tech industry. The Industries of the Futureis the perfect book for readers interested in learning about the world's most impactful technological advances.
“The rise of the internet economy has taught business leaders that very young people who grew up digital are likely the ones who are going to create the big internet companies. The same will hold true in many of the industries of the future. I expect most of the billion-dollar businesses in cyber and big data to spring from the minds of people in their twenties and thirties — those who grew up programming in a time of code war and the exponential growth of data" - Alec Ross
Unlock Startup Growth at RocketSpace
The best startup founders have added these and other entrepreneurial books to their reading lists. They use the distinct and varying perspectives found in these texts to stay on top of the latest tech trends, expand their skill sets, and achieve rapid tech startup growth.
Are you looking for even more ways to get ahead? RocketSpace supports Seed to Series C tech startups. With flexible coworking options, growth-oriented resources, and introductions to top investors. Many tech founders and entrepreneurs leverage the power of RocketSpace's global tech ecosystem to achieve rapid growth. In fact, RocketSpace has supported industry-leading tech giants including Spotify, Uber, and Zappos.
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