best business books

10 of the Best Business Books to Read This Summer

Members of the Young Entrepreneur Council share with you their suggestions for the best business books to read this summer.

1. Originals: How Non-Conformists Move the World by Adam Grant


Adam Grant is Wharton School’s top-rated professor, and in this book he explores how we can become more original in business. He does an impressive amount of research to help identify what it takes to disrupt an industry and be successful at doing something new. It’s a really great handbook for entrepreneurs, creatives and anyone trying to buck a trend.

– Mattan Griffel, One Month


2. Momentum: How to Propel Your Marketing and Transform Your Brand in the Digital Age by Shama Hyder

Richard Lorenzen

I just finished reading Shama Hyder’s second book, Momentum. Whether you are new to digital marketing or a veteran, everybody will gain nuggets of wisdom from this book. It’s a great go-to guide on analytics, content, social media and how to integrate it all together.

– Richard Lorenzen, Fifth Avenue Brands



3. #AskGaryVee: One Entrepreneur’s Take on Leadership, Social Media, and Self-Awareness by Gary Vaynerchuk

Nick Braun

I just finished Gary Vaynerchuk’s latest gem #AskGaryVee, and it’s the perfect summer read. It’s fun and quick but loaded with great stories and tactical advice. It’s a book you can pick up and put down at your leisure and will light a little fire in your belly.

– Nick Braun,



4. Never Eat Alone: And Other Secrets to Success, One Relationship at a Time by Keith Ferrazzi

Joe Landon

Every summer, I re-read Keith Ferrazzi’s Never Eat Alone to remind me the importance of building strong relationships and to inspire me to be bold and unafraid when pursuing my professional goals.

– Joe Landon, Space Angels Network



5. Ego is the Enemy by Ryan Holiday

Brandon Laughridge

Wunderkind Ryan Holiday’s newest book has to be on the top of an entrepreneur’s reading list. Holiday’s insights from his time running marketing for American Apparel are always shocking and relevant to the modern business world. I’m excited to see what Ego uncovers, as it explains how we can cope with what is often our greatest obstacle — ourselves.

– Brandon Laughridge, PolicyZip


6. Creativity, Inc.: Overcoming the Unseen Forces That Stand in the Way of True Inspiration by Ed Catmull and Amy Wallace

Nanxi Liu

ummer is a great time for lighter reading, so I’d turn to Creativity, Inc., the funny, inspirational and honest narrative of the story behind the success of Pixar. This book inspires my management style at Enplug, which is to hire great people and then get out of their way. It also shares some great mental models that teams can use to tackle long, challenging projects.

– Nanxi Liu, Enplug


7. Overwhelmed: Work, Love, and Play When No One Has the Time by Brigid Schulte

Jennifer Mellon

Overwhelmed: Work, Love and Play When No One Has the Time by Brigid Schulte is the best business book for any founder. Finding leisure time when our lives our overwhelmed with juggling partners, work and families is critical to our happiness and success. Finding leisure time this summer, even for a long weekend, should be critical for every player on your team, and you as a founder.

– Jennifer Mellon, Trustify


8. Deep Work: Rules for Focused Success in a Distracted World by Cal Newport

Nick Akey

Nothing says summer like droves of college students frantically partying to drown out the uncertainty of what their future holds. Deep Work is the book to settle their fears. It lays out a clear path to a fulfilling career by focusing on the single skill that separates leaders from followers. Read it, and then give away a copy to a terrified college student.

– Nick Akey, MakerSquare

9. Sprint: Solve Big Problems and Test New Ideas in Just Five Days by Jake Knapp, John Zeratsky, and Braden Kowitz

Nicole Munoz

Jake Knapp, John Zeratsky and Braden Kowitz are design partners at Google Ventures, so they have a deep and interesting take on innovation. In Sprint, they talk about their experiences at Google and a very unique problem-solving method.

– Nicole Munoz, Start Ranking Now



10. Wired to Create: Unraveling the Mysteries of the Creative Mind by Scott Barry Kaufman

Anthony Pezzotti

Wired to Create offers a glance into the messy minds of highly creative people, along with presenting engaging examples of artists and innovators throughout history. Each chapter explores one of the 10 attributes and habits of highly creative people where topics such as mindfulness, daydreaming and solitude are explored.

– Anthony Pezzotti,





Young Entrepreneur Council

Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC) is an invite-only organization comprised of the world’s most promising young entrepreneurs. In partnership with Citi, YEC recently launched BusinessCollective (, a free virtual mentorship program that helps millions of entrepreneurs start and grow businesses.

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