Though it’s never been easier to find great information online about running a small business, it’s sometimes hard to separate the signal from the noise. With all the sometimes unavoidable smoke and mirrors of the digital world, there’s a lot to be said for curling up with a classic book when you’re trying to really get to grips with a subject.
In this piece, we’ll introduce four modern classic books every small business owner should read. Each one tackles a slightly different part of the small business puzzle and has more than stood the test of time since its initial publication.
Let’s get started!
- The E-Myth Revisited by Michael E. Gerber
The clue to this book’s unique staying power is lurking in its sub-title – Why Most Small Businesses Don’t Work and What to Do About It. There’s something of a hokey feel to some of the introductory material here, but once the author gets down to business it’s pretty much solid gold throughout.
Gerber’s take on the lessons franchising offers to small businesses in terms of systematization is worth the admission price alone. He’s also particularly good on the traps that face businesses in their early stages, and the psychological minefield that many owners have to tiptoe through on their way to success.
- Work the System by Sam Carpenter
We’ve mentioned this one on the blog before, but it’s more than worth bringing up again. Carpenter’s core message is a stark one, but if you can take it fully on board it has the potential to be truly transformational in your business – you simply have to systematize.
In the author’s case, it was a particularly hard-won lesson as he struggled through decades of chaos and confusion in his professional and personal life before the penny fully dropped. There’s sure to be more than a few painful moments of recognition for most small business owners as they read his story.
- The 22 Immutable Laws of Marketing by Al Ries and Jack Trout
Marketing is an area of business area where it’s all too easy to get suckered into handing over your hard-won cash to smooth-talking practitioners and end up with very little to show for it. A little knowledge goes a long way when it comes to avoiding that scenario and this classic title will get you up and running with the core concepts of the discipline in record time.
- Commonsense Direct & Digital Marketing by Drayton Bird
Where the previous title will get you conceptually clued in on marketing, this one is all about detail and delivery. Drayton Bird has decades of hard-won experience behind him leading direct marketing campaigns for some of the biggest names in the business and he brings it all to bear in this classic title.
Written in an engagingly no-nonsense tone, this book will give you pretty much everything you need in order to be able to plan, execute and analyse marketing campaigns across all media, both on and offline.
Ongoing education is a necessity for all small business owners and putting together a carefully cultivated collection of third-party wisdom goes a long way towards helping you successfully grow your business over time. If you haven’t already come across our recommended titles, there’s no better time to pick up a copy than today!