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Five Must-Reads for Small Business Owners

2015 has been called the year of the startup, and thousands of entrepreneurs are spreading their wings and pursuing their passions. Even the giants started small, and every small business can learn from those that came before it.

Whether you’re a mom-and-pop shop or the next big thing, here are a handful of must-reads that can help you along the way.

1. The Lean Startup: Many small businesses never get past the planning stages. While a solid business plan means you’re more likely to follow through, research indicates that a foolproof plan doesn’t necessarily equal a successful small business venture. Whether you’re an established business or just getting your feet wet, this book contains priceless lessons on how to launch, analyze and rapidly modify your approach based on the scientific method, keeping your business approach flexible and out front of any potential roadblocks. Knowing when to pivot has saved some of today’s most successful businesses.

2. Getting Things Done: Starting a small business can be a BIG task. If you’re feeling overwhelmed, this book will help you break down the frenzy into more manageable components. Upgrade your organizational skills by getting granular with your to-do lists, identifying your workload and learning how to prioritize properly. Getting things done will clear your path toward relaxation, an empty inbox and ultimately, an increase in productivity. Your business will thank you.

3. SPIN Selling:Success is the watchword of any sales-based business, but don’t fall into the trap of a conventional approach. SPIN Selling allows you to take an honest inventory of your sales skills and get surgical with effective techniques for recognizing customer needs, pouncing on the right times to close and understanding how to lock in successful major sales.

4. Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook: In our 24/7 world, businesses live and die by social media. There’s no knockout without the setup, and this catalog of recommendations and business observations for the age of social media is what you need to get your small business in shape. Packed with contemporary examples and often blunt as a punch in the nose, Hook is both an entertaining and informative read for any business owner.

5. Get Big Fast and Do More Good: There’s one thing we can all agree every small business needs: growth. Two friends set out on a business journey to do just that, and they succeeded beyond their wildest dreams. Humorous and relatable, their story is filled with lessons gleaned from the pair’s triumphs (and failures) as an up-and-comer turned success story in a competitive cosmetics industry. Learn how to network, build meaningful business relationships and use your success to do some good in the world.

These books are just a few of our favorites. It’s an ocean of literature out there. Let us know some of your must-reads in the comments below or tweet us @ShareFile.