December 29, 2015Startup strategies
4 min read

4 Awesome Books on Entrepreneurship and Startups

The Lean Startup by Eric Ries

In 2008, Eric Ries proposed lean startup as a method for developing businesses and products. Based on his previous experience working in several U.S. startups, Ries suggests a combination of business-hypothesis-driven experimentation, iterative product releases, and what he calls validated learning to shorten startups product development cycles.

In 2011, The Lean Startup: How Today's Entrepreneurs Use Continuous Innovation to Create Radically Successful Businesses book was published to further promote the lean startup philosophy. The book quickly became a #2 New York Times bestseller while Amazon.com listed the book as one of their Best Business Books of 2011, and as of June 2012 the book had sold 90,000 copies.

Nowadays lean philosophy is widely popular. Several well-known high-tech companies have at one point started openly employing the lean startup philosophy, including Intuit, Dropbox, Wealthfront, Votizen, Aardvark, and Grockit. The principles of lean startup are also taught in classes at Harvard Business School and UC Berkeley and are implemented in municipal governments through Code for America. In addition, lean startup approach was taken to the United States Government by Steven VanRoekel, the Federal Chief Information Officer of the United States.

Traction: A Startup guide to Getting Customers by Gabriel Weinberg and Justin Mares

Gabriel Weinberg is the Founder & CEO of DuckDuckGo, previously the Co-founder & CEO of Opobox. Justin Mares is the former Director of Revenue at Exceptional, a software company that Rackspace acquired for 8 figures in 2013. He has previously founded two startups (one acquired, one bust) and runs a growth meetup in San Francisco.

This book introduces startup founders and employees to the "Bullseye Framework," a five-step process successful companies use to get traction. This framework helps founders find the marketing channel that will be key to unlocking the next stage of growth.

Traction is a guide to getting customers, written for startup founders, marketers, and those interested in how today's startups grow and get traction. This book shows you how the founders of several of the biggest companies and organizations in the world like Jimmy Wales (Wikipedia), Alexis Ohanian (Reddit), Paul English (Kayak.com) and Alex Pachikov (Evernote) have built and grown their startups. According to Eric Ries, bestselling author of The Lean Startup, “Anyone - founders, managers, and executives - trying to break through to new customers can use this smart, ambitious book”.

The Hard Thing About Hard Things by Ben Horowitz

Businessman, investor, blogger, and author, Ben Horowitz co-founded and served as president and chief executive officer of the enterprise software company Opsware, which Hewlett-Packard acquired for $1.6 billion in cash in July 2007.

‘The Hard Thing About Hard Things’ is based on Horowitz's posts from his blog on the Andreessen Horowitz web site which is syndicated to over 10 million readers, is considered required reading for Silicon Valley entrepreneurs, and was named one of “40 Entrepreneur Blogs You Should Be Reading” in 2011.

The Art of the Start 2.0 by Guy Kawasaki

Guy Kawasaki is well-known as Silicon Valley marketing executive and former Apple Fellow. ‘The Art of Start 2.0’ is the new version of the previous book, ‘The Art of the Start’. The latter was first published in 2004 and has obviously grown outdated by 2015. That’s why Guy Kawasaki decided to write the new version which is 64 percent longer and features Guy’s latest insights and practical advice about social media, crowdfunding, cloud computing, and many other topics.

According to Arianna Huffington, Huffington Post’s president and editor in chief, “The Art of the Start 2.0 is the ultimate entrepreneurship handbook. Kawasaki’s generous wisdom, tips, and humor reflect his successes and failures. We can all benefit from his insights.”

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