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The 25 Best Business Biographies You Should Read in 2023

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Entrepreneurs and founders must constantly adapt and learn from every possible source, and books are no exception.

This is especially true for business biographies, as they tend to be personally written by the most powerful and game-changing people in the business world.

Below there’s a list of the best 25 business biographies, carefully picked to satisfy everyone’s taste.

25 Best Business Biographies

1) Alibaba: The House That Jack Ma Built

Alibaba: The House That Jack Ma Built

Name of book: Alibaba: The House That Jack Ma Built

Description of the book: This excellent entrepreneur biography tells the ultimate story about the world-famous Chinese entrepreneur and founder of Alibaba, Jack Ma. 

The author, Duncan Clark, was an early advisor to Jack Ma in early 1999 when Alibaba was founded. You can read everything about Jack Ma, his breakthrough idea, and the impact it made in the e-commerce sector.

Entrepreneurs can also read about the humble beginnings of Alibaba, how Jack overcame his Silicon Valley rivals, and the story of Alibaba’s domination, with 80% of the market share. 

Author: Duncan Clark

Length: 304 pages

‍Notable quote: “Customers first, employees second, and shareholders third.”

 

2) Onward: How Starbucks Fought for Its Life without Losing Its Soul

Onward: How Starbucks Fought for Its Life without Losing Its Soul

Name of book: Onward: How Starbucks Fought for Its Life without Losing Its Soul

Description of the book: Onward is an excellent entrepreneur biography that presents the story of the popular coffee brand Starbucks and how they managed to stay on ‘top of their game’ during the 2008 crisis. 

The former CEO Howard Schultz describes his return after 8 years and the methods he implemented afterward. 

The biography offers a deep look at how Howard overcame all odds during the most challenging economic times in history and how Starbucks saved its soul and regained its profitability without sacrificing anything.

Author: Howard Schultz and Joanne Gordon

Length: 350 pages

‍Notable quote: “Beverages have to be created. And they’re created by looking at what trend is in, say, the fashion industry – what color’s hot right now.”

 

3) Steve Jobs: The Exclusive Biography

Steve Jobs: The Exclusive Biography

Name of book: Steve Jobs: The Exclusive Biography

Description of the book: Steve Jobs is a well-presented entrepreneur autobiography regarding one of the most influential founders ever. The book is based on over 40 interviews with Steve Jobs, his family members, and colleagues. 

You can see how Steve Jobs got his ideas and how he rose above the challenges throughout time. Walters shows how Jobs revolutionized multiple industries, including music, animated movies, phones, and tablet computers.

As an entrepreneur, you will undoubtedly find this book quite helpful as it shows Steve's methods and work ethic during his journey and how to maintain your sanity during extreme times.

Author: Walter Isaacson

Length: 627 pages

‍Notable quote: “You should never start a company with the goal of getting rich. Your goal should be making something you believe in and making a company that will last.”

 

4) Shoe Dog: A Memoir by the Creator of NIKE

Shoe Dog: A Memoir by the Creator of NIKE

Name of book: Shoe Dog: A Memoir by the Creator of Nike

Description of the book: Nike’s CEO and founder Phil Knight decided to open up and tell his story behind one of the most iconic brands today, Nike. 

His idea to sell high-quality and cheap-priced shoes imported from Japan was born in 1962. Knight shares all details from his journey, including obstacles he overcame, risks he took, and the sacrifices made for Nike to become what it is today.

You can also read plenty about the first partners and relationships with his employees, proving to us that everything is possible through teamwork and loyalty.

Author: Phil Knight

Length: 400 pages

‍Notable quote: “Let everyone else call your idea crazy... just keep going. Don’t stop. Don’t even think about stopping until you get there, and don’t give much thought to where ‘there’ is. Whatever comes, just don’t stop.”

 

5) Titan: The Life of John D. Rockefeller, Sr.

Titan: The Life of John D. Rockefeller, Sr.

Name of book: Titan: The Life of John D. Rockefeller, Sr.

Description of the book: Have you ever wondered how Rockefeller gained his reputation and wealth? Well, award-winning biographer Ron Chernow explored that subject and wrote a book about it, too. 

Titan shows the impressive story behind the most controversial family in the US and their place in history. Chernow tells us a detailed story about John D. Rockefeller, Sr, and his ruthless methods and ethics that made him the world’s first billionaire.

You can clearly see how Rockefeller founded the most powerful and feared monopoly in American history, Standard Oil, all the way to his demise at the behest of President Teddy Roosevelt.

Author: Ron Chernow

Length: 832 pages

‍Notable quote: “Success comes from keeping the ears open and the mouth closed”

 

6) Made in Japan: Akio Morita and Sony

Made in Japan: Akio Morita and Sony

Name of book: Made in Japan: Akio Morita and Sony

Description of the book: Made in Japan takes you on a journey behind Sony Corporation, from its co-founder, Akio Morita. 

As one of the best entrepreneur biographies, you can take a deep look at Japan’s business techniques and methods and how the Japanese think, which can be priceless information for founders.

The story narrated by the authors is centered on how Sony was built, from its humble beginning after World War II to its meteoric post-war rise as the most influential company for music entertainment, and multimedia.

Author: Akio Morita, Edwin M. Reingold and Mitsuko Shimomura

Length: 352 pages

‍Notable quote: “Curiosity is the key to creativity.”

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7) The Everything Store: Jeff Bezos and the Age of Amazon

The Everything Store: Jeff Bezos and the Age of Amazon

Name of book: The Everything Store: Jeff Bezos and the Age of Amazon

Description of the book: The Everything Store is the definitive biography of Amazon and its founder, Jeff Bezos. Brad Stone narrates the story of Jeff Bezos’s corporate culture and the methods he implemented at Amazon

You will read what it took for Jeff to build this company and how he changed how we shop and read... Forever!

Author: Brad Stone

Length: 384 pages

‍Notable quote: “Some of these investments will pay off, others will not, and we will have learned another valuable lesson in either case.”

 

8) Sam Walton: Made in America

Sam Walton: Made in America

Name of book: Sam Walton: Made in America

Description of the book: This is considered one of the greatest entrepreneur biographies because it describes the origin story of Sam Walton, the founder of Walmart and Sam’s Club. You will read how Sam founded the biggest retail stores in history and the largest private employer in the world. 

The authors clearly state what it took for Sam to create Walmart and what techniques he used in that process. Also, you will read about all methods regarding the planning and hiring process that attracted many workers. Today, Walmart is the largest corporation in terms of revenue.

Author: Sam Walton and John Huey

Length: 346 pages

‍Notable quote: “Great ideas come from everywhere if you just listen and look for them. You never know who’s going to have a great idea.”

9) Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future

Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future

Name of book: Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future

Description of the book: Ashlee Vence presents the detailed life of Elon Musk, the founder of Tesla and SpaceX. It gives you a deep look into Musk’s ideas and innovations about the future he envisioned. Everything changed when Elon sold PayPal and shifted his focus on future investments, like clean automobiles and space programs.

Musk’s story is used to explore the question: can inventors still compete in today’s fierce global competition?

Author: Ashlee Vence

Length: 392 pages

‍Notable quote: “Good ideas are always crazy until they’re not.”

 

10) The Snowball; Warren Buffett and the Business of Life

The Snowball; Warren Buffett and the Business of Life

Name of book: The Snowball: Warren Buffett and the Business of Life

Description of the book: The Snowball presents the story of Warren Buffett, one of the most successful investors in history and the founder of Berkshire Hathaway Holdings. 

Alice Schroeder narrates this well-read CEO biography about the life of Warren Buffett and the idea to create a holding company that owns stocks in multiple famous corporations like Coca-Cola, American Express, and Apple.

As an entrepreneur, you will find important information about Warren’s secrets despite living in privacy for most of his life.

Author: Alice Schroeder

Length: 960 pages

‍Notable quote: “Time is the friend of the wonderful business, the enemy of the mediocre.”

 

11) Morgan: American Financier

Morgan: American Financier

Name of book: Morgan: American Financier

Description of the book: One of the best business biographies, Morgan gives you a never-before-seen insight about J. Pierpont Morgan, one of the greatest investors in US history. 

In this book, you will read how Morgan reorganized the nation’s railroad and appointed himself as a one-man central bank. The author also guides the reader into Morgan’s life outside his business.

Author: Jean Strouse

Length: 816 pages

‍Notable quote: “No problem can be solved until it is reduced to some simple form. The changing of a vague difficulty into a specific, concrete form is a very essential element in thinking.”

 

12) Here, There and Everywhere: My Life Recording the Music of The Beatles

Here, There and Everywhere: My Life Recording the Music of The Beatles

Name of book: Here, There and Everywhere: My Life Recording the Music of The Beatles

Description of the book: Here, There and Everywhere is one of the best business biographies regarding The Beatles chief engineer, the man responsible for their unique sound. 

Geoff Emerick describes his journey from the start of The Beatles in 1962, all the way to their meteoric rise to the top. In the book, you will find out how Geoff pioneered innovative recording techniques and how he achieved the sound of their most famous songs that changed rock music forever.

As an entrepreneur, you can learn that starting at a young age can be the best move you can make - just like Geoff did when he was 15 years old!

Author: Geoff Emerick

Length: 400 pages

‍Notable quote: “It was down to me—not George Martin, not anyone else—to turn the Beatles’ new vision into a reality.”

 

13) Bloomberg by Bloomberg

Bloomberg by Bloomberg

Name of book: Bloomberg by Bloomberg

Description of the book: Bloomberg by Bloomberg is the origin story of Michael R. Bloomberg, the founder of Bloomberg L.P. 

Written by Michael himself, this book takes us deep into Bloomberg’s life and his idea of creating his own company after he got fired at the age of 39.

Throughout the book, readers will learn more about his creative mind and the challenges he faced at Wall Street, all the way up to founding the fastest-growing media empire on Earth.

Author: Michael R. Bloomberg

Length: 272 pages

‍Notable quote: If you're going to succeed, you need a vision, one that's affordable, practical, and fills a customer need. Then, go for it.”

 

14) Carnegie

Carnegie

Name of book: Carnegie

Description of the book: Carnegie takes us on a journey into the life of Andrew Carnegie, one of the major figures in American history. 

Peter Krass describes the origin story of the titan who made his fortune through the steel industry and how he used the wealth upon his retirement.

The readers can take a look at how Andrew influenced the world’s political stage and the way he founded the largest and the most profitable steel industry on the planet. As a founder, you will learn how Andrew became one of the biggest philanthropists in the world, despite his notorious reputation.

Author: Peter Krass

Length: 612 pages

‍Notable quote: “The poor enjoy what the rich could not before afford. What were the luxuries have become the necessities of life. The laborer has now more comforts than the landlord had a few generations ago.”

 

15) Only the Paranoid Survive: How to Exploit the Crisis Points That Challenge Every Company

Only the Paranoid Survive: How to Exploit the Crisis Points That Challenge Every Company

Name of book: Only the Paranoid Survive: How to Exploit the Crisis Points That Challenge Every Company

Description of the book: Every manager must understand that eventually everything changes. This is the critical point in Only the Paranoid Survive by former Intel CEO Andrew Grove. 

The charismatic innovator narrates his story in Intel and how he helped the company to remain the largest chip producer. Readers will discover the strategic inflection points or SIPs Andrew faced in his career and how he beat the Japanese competition.

Only the Paranoid Survive can be the ultimate lesson about leadership skills, which you can benefit almost instantly.

Author: Andrew S. Grove

Length: 224 pages

‍Notable quote: “Only the Paranoid Survive.”

 

16) iWoz: Computer Geek to Cult Icon: How I Invented the Personal Computer, Co-Founded Apple, and Had Fun Doing It

iWoz: Computer Geek to Cult Icon: How I Invented the Personal Computer, Co-Founded Apple, and Had Fun Doing It

Name of book: iWoz: Computer Geek to Cult Icon: How I Invented the Personal Computer, Co-Founded Apple, and Had Fun Doing It

Description of the book: Take a deep look into the creation of Apple and the first personal computer, brought to you by the charismatic Steve Wozniak. 

In iWoz, you will read about the early starts for Wozniak and the idea behind Apple. Narrated by Steve himself, he presents details about his personal life like never before and describes his groundbreaking idea to combine the first real personal computer named Apple I

Authors: Steve Wozniak and Gina Smith

Length: 313 pages

‍Notable quote: “The world needs inventors--great ones. You can be one. If you love what you do and are willing to do what it really takes, it's within your reach. And it'll be worth every minute you spend alone at night, thinking and thinking about what it is you want to design or build. It'll be worth it, I promise.”


17) My Life and Work: Autobiography of Henry Ford

My Life and Work: Autobiography of Henry Ford

Name of book: My Life and Work; Autobiography of Henry Ford

Description of the book: Published in 1922, this entrepreneur autobiography gives you the slightest details regarding Ford’s beginnings, the strategies he used to revolutionize the automotive industry, and how he got into the business.

Henry Ford guides the reader through his history and his own business philosophy used to create Ford Motor Company. 

Author: Henry Ford

Length: 204 pages

‍Notable quote: “There is no disgrace in honest failure; there is disgrace in fearing to fail

18) Commodore: The Life of Cornelius Vanderbilt

Commodore: The Life of Cornelius Vanderbilt

Name of book: Commodore: The Life of Cornelius Vanderbilt

Description of the book: This is the detailed story about Cornelius Vanderbilt, the forefather of modern American business. 

Readers will find out how Cornelius built his fortune and his vision to turn New York into the financial capital we see today. This book sheds light on Cornelius’s private life from previously unreleased articles.

Author: Edward J. Renehan Jr.

Length: 364 pages

‍Notable quote: “Never tell anyone what you are going to do till you have done it.”

19) Jack: Straight from the Gut

Jack: Straight from the Gut

Name of book: Jack: Straight from the Gut

Description of the book: Many readers would agree that this book is one of the best business biographies. The authors will introduce you to the life of former General Electrics Chairman and CEO Jack Welch. 

You will find out how Jack managed to run one of the biggest corporations of our time in a robust economic era in the US.

Authors: Jack Welch, John A. Byrne, and Mike Barnicle

Length: 496 pages

‍Notable quote: "There is no straight line to anyone's vision or dream."

 

20) Delivering Happiness: A Path to Profits, Passion, and Purpose

Delivering Happiness: A Path to Profits, Passion, and Purpose

Name of book: Delivering Happiness: A Path to Profits, Passion, and Purpose

Description of the book: Written directly by former Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh, this entrepreneur biography contains detailed information and tips on how to manage your company. 

Entrepreneurs and founders will read about Tony’s early start and learn the creativity he used to run Zappos to the top of its industry.

Author: Tony Hsieh

Length: 246 pages

‍Notable quote: “I had decided to stop chasing the money, and start chasing the passion.”

 

21) Iacocca: An Autobiography

Iacocca: An Autobiography

Name of book: Iacocca: An Autobiography

Description of the book: Let’s dive into the automotive world once again. Lee Iacocca, the former legendary President at Ford and Chairman at Chrysler, is the man behind this book

In this entrepreneur biography, Lee guides the reader from his humble beginnings and working at Ford and how he saved Chrysler Corporation from bankruptcy during the 1980s. 

Lee presents his vision and how he came up with the idea to create the Mustang, one of Ford’s famous models.

Authors: Lee Iacocca and William Novak

Length: 357 pages

‍Notable quote: “Get all the education you can then go out and do something - do anything.”

 

22) American Icon: Alan Mulally and the Fight to Save Ford Motor Company

American Icon: Alan Mulally and the Fight to Save Ford Motor Company

Name of book: American Icon: Alan Mulally and the Fight to Save Ford Motor Company

Description of the book: American Icon gives us a magnificent story about Ford Motors and its turnaround of the leadership from its CEO Alan Mulally. 

The book explains how Alan managed to save the company in the 2008 crisis, upon rejection of financial help from the government. 

Alan implemented the methods he used in Boeing, reorganized Ford’s management, and turned the corporation into the largest automotive producer during those difficult times.

Entrepreneurs can read this book and see what plans Alan used to prevent Ford’s collapse.

Author: Bryce G. Hoffman

Length: 432 pages

‍Notable quote: “You have to expect the unexpected, and you have to deal with it.”

 

23) The Man Who Solved the Market: How Jim Simons Launched the Quant Revolution

23) The Man Who Solved the Market: How Jim Simons Launched the Quant Revolution

Name of book: The Man Who Solved the Market: How Jim Simons Launched the Quant Revolution

Description of the book: The Man Who Solved the Market is a best-selling book about mathematician Jim Simons and his pioneering algorithm-driven approach to investing. 

The book follows Simons’s path to success, starting with his early years, education at MIT and work at IBM, and finally, his late-life acclaim as the founder of Renaissance Technologies. 

The is a great entrepreneur biography for those wanting to learn more about finances, teamwork, and professional collaboration.

Author: Gregory Zuckerman

Length: 359 pages

‍Notable quote: “Any time you hear financial experts talking about how the market went up because of such and such—remember it’s all nonsense.”

 

24) The Animated Man: A Life Of Walt Disney

The Animated Man: A Life Of Walt Disney

Name of the book: The Animated Man: A Life of Walt Disney

Description of the book: Michael Barrier is the man behind one of the best business biographies, the origin story of Walt Disney. In this book, readers will discover important details from Walt’s life and how he got the idea to make cartoons.

Michael recorded countless interviews with Disney’s partner and friends to write this book.

You will see what challenges Walt overcame and how he battled out of the disaster that occurred in 1941.

Author: Michael Barrier

Length: 393 pages

‍Notable quote: "I am not a literary person. As far as realism is concerned, you can find dirt anyplace you look for it. I'm one of those optimists. There's always a rainbow. The great masses like happy endings. If you can pull a tear out of them, they'll remember your picture.”

 

25) I’d Like the World to Buy a Coke: The Life and Leadership of Roberto Goizueta

I’d Like the World to Buy a Coke: The Life and Leadership of Roberto Goizueta

Name of the book: I’d Like the World to Buy a Coke: The Life and Leadership of Roberto Goizueta

Description of the book: I’d Like the World to Buy a Coke takes us on a journey in the life of Roberto Goizueta, one of the longest-serving and highest-paid CEOs in history. 

The book explains Roberto’s arrival from Cuba in the 1960s and his rise while working in Coca-Cola. You will find out how Roberto reorganized Coca-Cola, the leader in the soft-drink industry, and his marketing strategies that made Coke the most popular beverage on Earth. 

Author: David Greising

Length: 334 pages

‍Notable quote: “Not to take risks is the biggest risk.”

 

What Business Biographies Did We Miss?

So there you have it!

25 of the best entrepreneur biographies out there that can undoubtedly give you some sort of inspiration as you prepare yourself for the next ‘big’ step. 

All of these biographies are written with the purpose of helping entrepreneurs, as many of them come from groundbreaking founders and investors that reshaped the business world. 

Just like always, if we missed any biography that deserves a spot on our pretty list, don’t forget to send us an email - we’re more than happy to update our list with more and more entrepreneur biographies.

Questions About Business Biographies

What Are Business Biography Books?

Business biography books tell the behind-the-scenes stories of the greatest minds in the business industry, including Walt Disney, Elon Musk, and Jeff Bezos.

What Are The Best Business Biographies?

The best business biographies are Alibaba, by Duncan Clark, Steve Jobs, by Walter Isaacson, and Shoe Dog, by Phil Knight.

What Are The Best CEO Biographies?

CEO biographies are a segment of business biographies, which share the stories of the CEOs of the biggest companies. Only the Paranoid Survive, by Andrew Grove, Jack, by Jack Welch, and Delivering Happiness, by Tony Hsieh, are the best CEO biographies.


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