Sass recently reached out to a group of female bosses and asked them to name their favorite business books for women. We wanted to know which books truly made an impact on them personally as well as how they approached their businesses. These books are great resources for all entrepreneurs, managers and businesswomen!
As an entrepreneur reading can be an enriching way to learn how to better manage your business. Business books can show you how to be a leader and how to make better business decisions.
Here is a list of some of the top 15 business books for women, with brief overviews pulled from Goodreads.com.
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Atomic Habits: An Easy & Proven Way to Build Good Habits & Break Bad Ones
By James Clear
Atomic Habits will reshape the way you think about progress and success, and give you the tools and strategies you need to transform your habits — whether you are a team looking to win a championship, an organization hoping to redefine an industry, or simply an individual who wishes to quit smoking, lose weight, reduce stress, or achieve any other goal.
You Are a Badass: How to Stop Doubting Your Greatness and Start Living an Awesome Life
By Jen Sincero
If you’re ready to make some serious changes, You Are a Badass will help you: Identify and change the self-sabotaging beliefs and behaviors that stop you from getting what you want, blast past your fears so you can take big exciting risks, figure out how to make some damn money already, learn to love yourself and others, set big goals and reach them — it will basically show you how to create a life you totally love, and how to create it now. As far as books go, this is one of the best business books for women!
Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less
By Greg McKeown
The Way of the Essentialist isn’t about getting more done in less time. It’s about getting only the right things done. It is not a time management strategy, or a productivity technique. It is a systematic discipline for discerning what is absolutely essential, then eliminating everything that is not, so we can make the highest possible contribution towards the things that really matter.
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Work Like a Woman: A Manifesto For Change
By Mary Portas
Women today are working in a man’s culture — and it’s holding us back. In Work Like a Woman, Mary Portas examines the world of employment, how it works against women and what needs to change, as she tells the story of her career — and learning to rewrite the rules.
Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear
By Elizabeth Gilbert
Elizabeth Gilbert offers insights into the mysterious nature of inspiration. She shows us how to tackle what we most love, and how to face down what we most fear. She discusses the attitudes, approaches, and habits we need in order to live our most creative lives. Whether we are looking to write a book, make art, find new ways to address challenges in our work, embark on a dream long deferred, or simply infuse our everyday lives with more mindfulness and passion, Big Magic cracks open a world of wonder and joy.
Badass Your Brand: The Impatient Entrepreneur’s Guide to Turning Expertise into Profit
By Pia Silva
Whether you are still employed and dream of being your own boss, or you’re self-employed but have always struggled to find clients, Badass Your Brand is the quickest way to start attracting high paying clients and building a reputation that will afford you the freedom of lifestyle that you want — without the startup costs.
Clockwork: Design Your Business to Run Itself
By Mike Michalowicz
Do you worry that your business will collapse without your constant presence? Are you sacrificing your family, friendships, and freedom to keep your business alive? What if instead your business could run itself, freeing you to do what you love when you want, while it continues to grow and turn a profit? Mike Michalowicz, the author of Profit First and other small-business bestsellers, offers a straightforward step-by-step path out of this dilemma. In Clockwork, he draws on more than six years of research and real life examples to explain his simple approach to making your business ultra-efficient.
Being Boss: Take Control of Your Work and Live Life on Your Own Terms
By Emily Thompson & Kathleen Shannon
Being Boss gives you both hard-hitting business advice along with inspiring lessons on self-care and finding balance. With worksheets, checklists, and other real tools for achieving success, here’s a guide that will truly help you “be boss” not only at growing your business, but in every aspect of your life.
Think on Your Feet: Tips and Tricks to Improve Your Impromptu Communication Skills on the Job
By Jen Oleniczak Brown
Filled with engaging improv activities, this interactive guide will ensure you never come away from a tough moment pondering the woulda, coulda, shoulda! again. You’ll learn how to nurture your personal style for communicating in every professional situation. From effective listening in the office, giving presentations, and leading meetings to negotiating a raise, acing an interview, and more, you’ll start communicating with confidence and stop letting the unexpected hold you back. Take your workplace communication — and your career — to the next level by mastering the art of Thinking on Your Feet.
How to Listen and How to Be Heard: Inclusive Conversations at Work
By Alissa Carpenter
For anyone who has ever felt their voice isn’t heard at work. This is a guide on how to empower yourself and others to communicate with people who think, act, and experience things differently than you do, and do so with more confidence, candor, and authenticity.
Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking
By Susan Cain
At least one-third of the people we know are introverts. They are the ones who prefer listening to speaking; who innovate and create but dislike self-promotion; who favor working on their own over working in teams. It is to introverts — Rosa Parks, Chopin, Dr. Seuss, Steve Wozniak — that we owe many of the great contributions to society.
The Confidence Code: The Science and Art of Self-Assurance — What Women Should Know
By Katty Kay & Claire Shipman
Combining cutting-edge research in genetics, gender, behavior, and cognition — with examples from their own lives and those of other successful women in politics, media, and business — Kay and Shipman go beyond admonishing women to “lean in.” Instead, they offer the inspiration and practical advice women need to close the gap and achieve the careers they want and deserve.
Company of One
By Paul Jarvis
Company of One is a refreshingly new approach centered on staying small and avoiding growth, for any size business. Not as a freelancer who only gets paid on a per piece basis, and not as an entrepreneurial start-up that wants to scale as soon as possible, but as a small business that is deliberately committed to staying that way.
By Brené Brown
In this book, researcher and thought leader Dr. Brené Brown offers a powerful new vision that encourages us to dare greatly: to embrace vulnerability and imperfection, to live wholeheartedly, and to courageously engage in our lives.
Unfu*k Yourself: Get Out of Your Head and Into Your Life
By Gary John Bishop
Have you ever felt like a hamster on a wheel, furiously churning your way through life but somehow going nowhere? It seems like there’s a barrage of information surrounding us in our everyday lives with the keys to this thing or that thing, be it wealth, success, happiness or purpose. The truth is, most of it fails to capture what it truly takes to overcome our greatest barrier to a greater life…ourselves. What if everything you ever wanted resided in you like a well of potential, waiting to be expressed? Unfu*k Yourself is the handbook for the resigned and defeated, a manifesto for real life change and unleashing your own greatness.
Some of the books on this list aren’t even technically “business books,” but, as true entrepreneurs and business women, we can find inspiration from anything! Which of these books will you add to your bookshelf? Which of these business books for women will you read next? Have another book to recommend? List it in the comments below?
All book descriptions have been pulled from Goodreads.com and/or each book’s respected publisher.
Kim is the owner and publisher of Sass Magazine, as well as the owner of Sass Studios, a boutique graphic design studio in Frederick, MD. When not in the office, Kim can be found doing some of her favorite hobbies—reading a book, dancing, traveling, or playing with her rescued pitbull.