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Best Business Books: Suggested Reading, Recently Read, & Up Next

Certain influential business books will surface during conversations with business partners and clients. We’ve compiled this page of the best business books, ones we often suggest, those we’re currently reading and suggested to us next up to read. Hope you find our resource helpful!

Suggested Reading

Execution: The Discipline of Getting Things Done

Larry Bossidy, Ram Charan, Charles Burck (with)

Why do we suggest this book? Written in the late 1990s by a duo comprised of a Silicon Valley consultant, a former GE executive, and Allied Signal CEO, this book provides a framework for building your organization, systems, and culture for optimal performance. While the book draws upon examples from Fortune 500 companies, the lessons learned are equally valuable for startups and solopreneurs as for large companies.

The Motive: Why So Many Leaders Abdicate Their Most Important Responsibilities

Patrick Lencioni

Why do we suggest this book? Lencioni has written many seminal texts on leadership and management so you can take your pick on which to choose from. However, in the tech world, there are many who become accidental CEOs or see that role as a reward, not an obligation. In a short two-hour read, the author details the duties of a CEO in the form of a discussion between two leaders and suggests the CEO’s 5 key management responsibilities.

FYI: For Your Improvement, A Guide for Development and Coaching

Michael M. Lombardo

Why do we suggest this book? This book is the bible for people managers looking to provide empowering feedback and develop future stars. We used this book at Dell when doing performance reviews for maximum impact. The book outlines “competencies” and “career stallers”. Good leaders will use this resource to outline the capabilities a successful employee needs to have in the role, provide examples of positive and negative traits, and is provided remedies to develop these competencies for positive, personal growth.

Recently Read

Wisdom at Work: The Making of a Modern Elder

Chip Conley

Why do we suggest this book? Our firm specializes in the tech industry which has an implicit bias against older leaders unless they have deep pockets to invest or a stellar CV and are able to cast a spell and enthrall others with stories of their exploits. Conley in this book highlights the blind spots that many young founders experience and how mid to late-career executives can provide mentorship, and leadership to these organizations while also learning and staying relevant in their careers.

Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap… and Others Don’t

James C. Collins

Why do we suggest this book? Good To Great examines what it takes for ordinary companies to become great and outperform their competitors by analyzing 28 companies over 30 years, who managed to make the transition or fell prey to their bad habits. Either through osmosis or by coincidence, we adopted the name of our firm based on his explanation of the ‘flywheel effect’.

The Challenger Sale: Taking Control of the Customer Conversation

Gino Wickman

Why do we suggest this book?What’s the secret to sales success? If you’re like most business leaders, you’d say it’s fundamentally about relationships-and you’d be wrong. The best salespeople don’t just build relationships with customers. They challenge them.


Gino Wickman

Why do we suggest this book? Gino Wickman is the creator of EOS (Entrepreneurial Operating System). For those that have never worked in a large company and struggle with planning and executing in a smaller business, this book lays out a process for creating your mission and 1,3 and 10 year objectives, along with a framework to align your management team to execute those plans.

The Checklist Manifesto: How to Get Things Right

Atul Gawande

Why do we suggest this book? Checklist Manifesto is a complement to the execution book mentioned above. If you want to get work done, easier, faster, and with fewer errors, this book, written by a practicing doctor shows that checklists are often the key to exceptional performance.

Up Next

The Battle for Your Brain: Defending the Right to Think Freely in the Age of Neurotechnology

Nita A. Farahany

Why is this on our list to read? We had the pleasure to hear Ms. Farahany speak at a recent business conference and appreciate her insights on the inevitability of AI as a business tool, but also the responsibility of society to govern its use.

Happiness is a Serious Problem

Dennis Prager

Why is this on our list to read? In this unique blend of self-help and moral philosophy, talk-radio host Dennis Prager asserts that we’re actually obligated to be happy, because it makes us better people. Achieving that happiness won’t be easy, though: to Prager, it requires a continuing process of counting your blessings and giving up any expectations that life is supposed to be wonderful.

The Disruption Mindset

Charlene Li

Why is this on our list to read? “Many companies make disruption their goal. They believe that if they develop the right innovation, they will disrupt their markets forever and drive the kind of growth worthy of a magazine cover story. But as bestselling author Charlene Li explains, that’s not how disruption works. Disruption doesn’t create growth; instead, growth creates disruption.”

The Rise of America: Remaking the World Order

Martin Katusa

Why is this on our list to read? We’re political science and macroeconomic analysis junkies here at Flywheel Advisors. How could you not be enticed by the following book summary?

“Doom and gloom is the predominant sentiment in America. It has become widely accepted within the investment, political, and media sectors that America is on the decline and that China will drive the global agenda in the 21st century.
To which I say, not so fast. This book carefully examines the trends and actual hard data from the economic, geopolitical, financial, and demographic spheres and comes to an inescapable conclusion: America’s future has never been brighter.”

Converted: The Data-Driven Way to Win Customers’ Hearts

Neil Hoyne

Why is this on our list to read? Suggested to us by a business partner during a conversation about customer experience, this book “offers a simple, research-backed playbook that anyone can use to find their best customers and develop relationships that last.”