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Here's a list of the best 25 business biography books for entrepreneurs, including the stories of Elon Musk, Steve Jobs, and Jeff Bezos.
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Entrepreneurs and founders must always adapt and learn from every possible source, and books are not an 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.
Name of book: Alibaba: The House That Jack Ma Built
Description of the book: This wonderful 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 pretty much 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 and how Jack managed to overcome his Silicon Valley rivals, as well as the story of Alibaba’s domination, with 80% of the market share.
Author: Duncan Clark
Length: 304 pages
Description of the book: Onward 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 afterwards.
The biography offers a deep look at how Howard managed to overcome all odds during the most difficult economic times in history and the way Starbucks saved their soul and regained their profitability without sacrificing anything.
Length: 350 pages
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 useful as it shows all the methods and works ethic used by Steve during his journey and how to maintain your sanity during extreme times.
Author: Walter Isaacson
Length: 627 pages
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 back in 1962. Knight shares all details from his journey, including obstacles he overcame, risks he took, and the sacrifices made in order 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
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 see a clear presentation on 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
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, straight from its co-founder, Akio Morita. As one of the best business biographies, you can take a deep look at Japan’s business techniques and methods as well as how the Japanese think, which can be priceless information for founders.
The story narrated from 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 powerful company for music entertainment and multimedia.
Length: 352 pages
Name of book: The Everything Store: Jeff Bezos and the Age of Amazon
Description of the book: The Everything Store is the definitive biography about Amazon and its founder, Jeff Bezos. Brad Stone narrates the story about Jeff Bezos’s corporate culture and methods he implemented in Amazon. You will read what it took for Jeff to build this company and how he managed to change the way we shop and read... Forever!
Author: Brad Stone
Length: 384 pages
Name of book: Sam Walton: Made in America
Description of the book: This biography is 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 give a clear presentation on 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 a massive number of workers. Today, Walmart is the largest corporation on the planet in terms of revenue.
Length: 346 pages
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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
Name of book: The Snowball: Warren Buffett and the Business of Life
Description of the book: The Snowball presents the story about Warren Buffett, one of the most successful investors in history and the founder of Berkshire Hathaway Holdings. Alice Schroeder narrates this well-read business biography about the life of Warren Buffett and the idea to create a holding company that owns stocks in multiple popular 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
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 managed to reorganize the nation’s railroad and how he appointed himself as a one-man central bank.
The author guides the reader into Morgan’s life outside his business and gives you a clearer picture of this magnate as you’ve never seen before.
Author: Jean Strouse
Length: 816 pages
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 the innovative recording techniques as well as how he managed to achieve 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
Name of book: Bloomberg by Bloomberg
Description of the book: Bloomberg by Bloomberg is the origin story about 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 find out 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
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
Description of the book: Every manager must understand that eventually everything changes. This is the key point in Only the Paranoid Survive by the 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 that Andrew faced in his career and how he has beaten the Japanese competition.
Only the Paranoid Survive can be the ultimate lesson about leadership skills, which you can benefit from almost instantly.
Author: Andrew S. Grove
Length: 224 pages
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 from 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.
Length: 313 pages
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
Name of book: Commodore: The Life of Cornelius Vanderbilt
Description of the book: This is the full 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
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 the way Jack managed to run one of the biggest corporations of our time in a robust economic era in the US.
Length: 496 pages
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 in order to run Zappos to the top of its industry.
Author: Tony Hsieh
Length: 246 pages
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.
Length: 357 pages
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 and reorganized Ford’s management and turned the corporation to the largest automotive producer in those difficult times.
Entrepreneurs can read this book and see what kind of plans Alan used in order to prevent Ford’s collapse.
Author: Bryce G. Hoffman
Length: 432 pages
Name of book: The Unbeatable Legend in Business World
Description of the book: The Unbeatable Legend in Business is a detailed story about Microsoft and its owner Bill Gates. Rahul describes the beginnings of Microsoft, their battle against piracy theft and how are they using it in their favor to remain on top. Readers will also discover the marketing tactics used at Microsoft.
The book also describes plenty of other interesting things that made them leaders in this field without any competition.
Author: Rahul Doshi
Length: 65 pages
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
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 uprise 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
So there you have it!
25 of the best business 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 biographies because that's our main goal, too - helping!
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