Books on startups and startup methodology

Thanks to Michael Ugor, a few ideas on startup books to buy:

“Life is too short to read bad books” – There are many crappy books out there that claim to tell you “the secrets of running a successful  startup”  I got personally fooled by some of the self-proclaimed expert authors and catchy titles in past.
 
Since then I became extremely picky about what I chose to read. To find the books, I’ve spent days scouring sites like Quora for recommendations from top tech entrepreneurs and investors as well as personal blogs of entrepreneurs like Marc Andreessen to find out what what he reads and recommends the most.
 
And we’ve collated the list of some of the top books you simply have to read if you are into startups and care about your education and skills.
 
1. The Four Steps to the Epiphany by Steve BlankThe essential book for anyone bringing a product to market, writing a business plan, marketing plan or sales plan. Step-by-step strategy of how to successfully organize sales, marketing and business development for a new product or company.

 

2. Rework by Jason FriedRework shows you a better, faster, easier way to succeed in business. Read it and you’ll know why plans are actually harmful, why you don’t need outside investors, and why you’re better off ignoring the competition. The truth is, you need less than you think.

 

3. Lean Startup by Eric RiesMost startups fail. But many of those failures are preventable. The Lean Startup is a new approach being adopted across the globe, changing the way companies are built and new products are launched.

 

4. The Art of the Start by Guy KawasakiGuy Kawasaki explains how to transform ideas into action, offering a step-by-step approach to launching great products, services, and companies and demonstrating how managers can unleash a creative approach to business at established companies.

 

5. Hackers & Painters: Big Ideas from the Computer Age by Paul GrahamPaul Graham on importance of beauty in software design, how to make wealth, heresy and free speech, the programming language renaissance, the open-source movement, digital design, internet startups, and more.

 

6. Information Rules: A Strategic Guide to the Network Economy by Carl Shapiro and Hal VarianDurable economic principles can guide you in today’s frenetic business environment. Technology changes. Economic laws do not.

 

7. Do More Faster: TechStars Lessons to Accelerate Your Startup by Brad Feld and David CohenCollection of advice that comes from individuals who have passed through, or are part of, Techstars accelerator.

 

8. The Thank You Economy by Gary VaynerchukWe are living in the ‘Thank You Economy’ thanks to social media and other forms of instant communication. This book is about building loyalty, trust, and repeatable business.

 

9. The Innovator’s Dilemma by Clay ChristensenDisruptive vs. Sustaining Technologies. Professor Clayton Christensen of Harvard Business School describes a theory about how large, outstanding firms can fail “by doing everything right.”

 

10. The Entrepreneurial Guide to Customer Development by Brant Cooper and Patrick VlaskovitsCustomer Development is a four-step framework for helping startups discover and validate their customers, product, and go-to-market strategy, developed by Steve Blank and an integral part of Eric Ries’ Lean Startup methodology.

 

11. Venture Deals: Be Smarter Than Your Lawyer and Venture Capitalist by Brad Feld and Jason MendelsonAn engaging guide to excelling in today’s venture capital arena by managing directors at Foundry Group.

 

12. The Monk and the Riddle by Randy KomisarIf you can’t see yourself doing this business for the rest of your life, don’t start it. In other words, angel investor Randy Komisar wants to see passion and purpose in business, not just spreadsheets and a by-the-numbers business model.

 

13. Delivering Happiness by Tony HsiehCEO of Zappos explains how he created a corporate culture with a commitment to service that aims to improve the lives of its employees, customers, vendors, and backers.

 
 

And just for fun I’ve embedded below a slideshare on the top 10 mistakes entrepreneurs make. The only #thinslicing point I’d make is to make point #10 into #1 – getting feedback from customers in response to a prototype/MVP:

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