INc. magazine recently published an article listing 25 top CEOs and the books that each recommends.
Successful CEOs never stop learning. Personal growth is almost as important as hard work in building a winning business. Many entrepreneurs accomplish this through workshops, conferences, and even a few continuing education courses. However, for a busy entrepreneur, being away from the office for a few days can lead to other problems.
The Remains of the Day
Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos lists Kazuo Ishiguro's The Remains of the Dayamong his favorite books, citing its ability to teach readers about life and regret.
The Boys in the Boat: Nine Americans and Their Epic Quest for Gold at the 1936 Olympics
As Morgan Stanley's chairman and CEO, James Gorman finds inspiration in this story of determined amateurs who accomplished great things.
The End of Power
When Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg kicked off his goal to read a new book every two weeks, he started with this book, a study in how leadership has evolved over the past 100 years. HEre is an extract summary from Amazon:
Mark Zuckerberg's inaugural pick for his "Year of Books" challenge, The End of Power updates the very notion of power for the 21st century. Power, we know, is shifting: From West to East and North to South, from presidential palaces to public squares, from once formidable corporate behemoths to nimble startups and, slowly but surely, from men to women. But power is not merely dispersing; it is also decaying. Those in power today are more constrained in what they can do with it and more at risk of losing it than ever before.
In The End of Power, award-winning columnist and former Foreign Policy editor Moisés Naím illuminates the struggle between once-dominant megaplayers and the new micropowers challenging them in every field of human endeavor. Drawing on provocative, original research, Naím shows how the antiestablishment drive of micropowers can topple tyrants, dislodge monopolies, and open remarkable new opportunities, but it can also lead to chaos and paralysis. Naím deftly covers the seismic changes underway in business, religion, education, within families, and in all matters of war and peace. Examples abound in all walks of life: In 1977, eighty-nine countries were ruled by autocrats while today more than half the world’s population lives in democracies. CEO’s are more constrained and have shorter tenures than their predecessors. Modern tools of war, cheaper and more accessible, make it possible for groups like Hezbollah to afford their own drones. In the second half of 2010, the top ten hedge funds earned more than the world’s largest six banks combined
Former Oracle CEO Larry Ellison felt particularly inspired by Vincent Cronin's biography on Napoleon, feeling inspired by the way a man of modest means accomplished great things.
10. Business Adventures
Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates read Business Adventures at Buffett's recommendation and says the 1969 collection of Wall Street tales remains his favorite business book to date.
13. The Art of War
In his book Behind the Cloud, Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff describes how he applied the concepts in The Art of War to beat competitors through the element of surprise.
18. The Ascent of Money
When Coca-Cola executive Muhtar Kent wants inspiration, he turns to this book, which bills itself as "a financial history of the world."
21. My Inventions: The Autobiography of Nikola Tesl22. The Checklist Manifesto: How to Get Things Right
Twitter and Square founder Jack Dorsey hands this book to new hires at Square and quotes from it often.
24. The World Is Flat
JP Morgan's Jamie Dimon has a long recommended reading list, but this book is at the top of the list.