Getting through trying times isn’t easy, but you’re never the only one doing it. By looking at how others have dealt with similar difficulties, you can forge a path forward.
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5 min read
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For many, 2020 has felt like a year of endless upheaval and change — two themes not poised to go away anytime soon. Not a single aspect of society has gone untouched by recent events, and business is no different.
Being a great entrepreneur doesn’t just mean making money when times are good. Great business leaders thrive during difficult moments, but that doesn’t make tough times any easier. If you’re hoping to learn how to weather the storm, gathering other perspectives is always helpful.
No one book will be able to tell you the secret to getting your business through uncertainty, but here are eight that can help.
1. Be the Go-To: How to Own Your Competitive Market, Charge More, and Have Customers Love You For It by Theresa M. Līna
In times of uncertainty, consumers stop taking risks and instead gravitate toward classic “go-to” brands — but how do those brands achieve that status in the first place? Be the Go-To is a deep dive into how various companies became “go-to” brands in the past and what businesses in today’s ever-volatile market need to do to achieve that same status.
2. Healing Hacks: Bring Your Body Back to Nature by Ian Hart
No matter how much entrepreneurs want to devote themselves to their businesses, they are, at the end of the day, human. If entrepreneurs want to be able to face down the challenges their business might face, they need to take care of themselves as well as their business.
Healing Hacks is Ian Hart’s story of personal and professional success followed by inexplicable medical disaster — and the inspiring healing process that followed.
3. Change (the) Management: Why We as Leaders Must Change for the Change to Last by Al Comeaux
Far too often, businesses in dire need of change focus on the small stuff. While there’s nothing wrong with an occasional readjustment, sometimes the only real solution is a top-down restructuring. Change (the) Management brings the conversation about change back to the leaders at the heart of it all, focusing on ways that radical change can help companies through any number of different issues.
Related: How to Thrive on Change
4. The Master Identity Thief: Testimony and Solutions of an Expert Witness by Dartanyon A. Williams
Dartanyon A. Williams was just 23 years old by the time he had established a multimillion-dollar crime syndicate — and he was behind bars not long after. The Master Identity Thief is Williams’ story of how he shifted his criminal skills toward different goals, exposing harrowing truths about white-collar crime and corporate greed in the process.
5. Sacred Economics: Money, Gift, and Society in the Age of Transition by Charles Eisenstein
Sacred Economics might not focus on the bleeding edge of the business world, but that doesn’t make its contents any less valuable. Charles Eisenstein tells the story of how societies built on hunting and bartering turned toward capitalism and how those who prospered got to where they are today. In a time when the economy seems to be undergoing an endless transition toward something new, it helps to look back at history to forge a path forward.
6. Average Sucks: Why You Don’t Get What You Want (and What to Do About It) by Michael Bernoff
Good entrepreneurship isn’t all about strategy and networking — sometimes, it’s just about knowing who you truly are. Michael Bernoff’s new book strips away the language found in most business guides to focus on the essential: What do you bring to the table as an entrepreneur? It might be more difficult to find an answer to that question than you think, but Average Sucks will help you do so.
7. Banking on Digital Growth: The Strategic Marketing Manifesto to Transform Financial Brands by James Robert Lay
With each passing year, the business world becomes increasingly digital. But most traditional financial institutions like banks and credit unions are still woefully unprepared for the future. Banking on Digital Growth is a how-to guide for understanding the place of finance in the digital economy, and James Robert Lay’s insights will be able to broaden the perspective of even the most stubborn traditionalists.
8. Darkness Visible: A Memoir of Madness by William Styron
Just as entrepreneurs need to take care of their health, they need to put the same attention toward their mental state. Legendary novelist William Styron’s chronicle of his own depression, Darkness Visible, is never an easy read, but always a necessary one. Styron’s willingness to lay bare his own pain and vulnerability can show readers that coming to terms with your own issues is the only way to move forward.