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3 Books Small Business Owners Should Read

Rieva Lesonsky
3 Books Small Business Owners Should Read

There is so much small business owners need to know to operate at peak performance. Luckily we live in the Information Age with plentiful resources. To help you sift through some of the data, every week we’re going to look at three business books and the lessons you can learn from reading them.

Brilliance in Failure: A Leader’s Learning Journey ($14.99)

By Christian A. Brickman

I love this book. Partly because it underscores one of my core beliefs—that failure is a powerful teacher and we shouldn’t hang our heads in shame when we fail.

Realistically, maintains author Christian Brickman, who’s had quite an illustrious career (he’s currently the President and CEO of Sally Beauty Holdings), “failure is almost inevitable.”

Brickman draws on a lot of personal experiences, copping to plenty of failures on his path to the top. And Brickman shares a lot of wisdom here as well, in the form of tips, lists, pointers and advice.

This book is written in a storytelling tone. It’s as if you’re sitting across from Brickman getting one-on-one coaching from a brilliant business success.

An Entrepreneur’s Manifesto ($24.95)

By Steve Mariotti

There are not many people I admire more than Steve Mariotti, the founder of the Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship (NFTE), which educates at-risk youth about becoming business owners.

It’s hard not to admire a person who starts his book by writing, “The purpose of this book is to start a revolution. An Entrepreneurship Revolution.” Mariotti believe entrepreneurial education is “the most practical way to address so many of the ills plaguing the world economy today.”

Mariotti has been instrumental in this battle and this book, which is a great mix of education and motivation that will surely inspire you to join the fight.

Louder Than Words: Harness the Power of Your Authentic Voice ($27.95)

By Todd Henry

These days, when it’s essential for entrepreneurs to build an audience, having an authentic voice is of critical importance. That is what will help you stand out from the crowds of other businesses clamoring for consumers’ attention.

Author Todd Henry, who calls himself “an arms dealer for the creative revolution,” fills the book with strategies, true stories and exercises so you can work on developing your own authentic voice. He warns successful business leaders that it’s all too easy to become complacent, especially after experiencing some success.

Henry’s business is to help people (and companies) generate brilliant ideas. His advice here will help you do the same.

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Author information

Rieva Lesonsky

Rieva Lesonsky is CEO of GrowBiz Media, a media and custom content company focusing on small business and entrepreneurship. Email Rieva at, follow her on Google+ and, and visit her website,, to get the scoop on business trends and sign up for Rieva’s free TrendCast reports.