Business Education:
Personal Development Books

We're recommending personal development books because the stronger a business owners personal foundation, the stronger the business will be.

"Formal education will make you a living; self education will make you a fortune" Jim Rohm

Very often when a business is encountering difficulties or it's become static, the underlying reasons are related to personal development issues.

And for that reason, an investment in your personal development is also an investment in the business.

Not all business coaches will be able to coach you on these areas so, if you have a well established business and you know the nuts and bolts of running a business, you may need like to consider hiring a personal or leadership coach instead.

Recommended reading:

The Success Principles (Jack Canfield)

Jack Canfield is a success coach and extremely prolific author of personal development books. This book distills all of his ideas about how to be successful in life and its full of self improvement tips. It's the kind of book to keep on your book shelf and keep dipping in to over time for inspiration. Difficulty rating: Medium

The Secret Code of Success (Noah St John)

This book is worth a look since it flies int he face of many 'success' books and looks into why many traditional success advice doesn't work (eg. affirmations).

The Best Year of Your Life (Debbie Ford)

Debbie Ford is a New York Times best selling author and highly regarded coach. This book describes the ways we hold ourselves back from achieving our dreams and talks about overcoming excuses, self-defeating behaviors, negative self-talk and all the other ways we stop ourselves from living our best lives. It's an easy to read and practical book. Difficulty rating: easy

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People (Stephen R. Covey)

This Covey Seven Habits book is probably one of the best known personal development books amongst business owners. It includes a whole chapter on getting a grip of your time. Difficulty rating: hard going for some.

Who Moved My Cheese (Dr. Spencer Johnson)

This is a business book but it's really about how we as humans react and deal with change. It takes about 30 minutes to read but the message will stay with you forever. Using a fable it shows how two mice and two 'little people' handle a changing environment and highlights how we mere humans resist change and cause our own problems. Difficulty rating: easy

The Dip (Seth Godin)

Again, this is not strictly a personal development book but it has a profound message for business owners. All projects and businesses have highs and lows. Sometimes the lows are dips, sometimes they're dead-ends. Dips are just a part of the ride and need to be pushed through but dead-end projects are better abandoned early on so you don't waste time and energy. This book challenges you to know the difference and recognize it early on. Difficulty rating: Easy

Unlock Your Personal Potential (Richard Bisiker)

This personal development book is a 'self-coaching workbook' that covers self improvement topics such as boundaries, values, finding more energy, simplifying your life etc. It is full of self improvement tips. This are some of the basic steps contained within Coach University's Personal Foundation courses (also available to the public via telephone classes). Difficulty rating: Easy

Fierce Conversations (Susan Scott)

If communication skills are an area you want to work on, this book is a great place to start. Susan Scott shows how to have truthful conversations out in the open rather than around the 'water cooler' and the effects it has on business. A fascinating book. Difficulty rating: Easy

Scott has also written a follow-up book called 'Fierce Leadership' and her company Fierce Inc. delivers training programess. Go to for more information.

Recommended courses: University

The world's biggest coach training school also offers some of it's Personal Foundation courses to the public. All of their courses are delivered via telephone so they're easy and convenient to attend.

NLP (Neuro Linguistic Programming)

NLP courses are now widely available and are particularly good for improving communication skills.

Landmark Education

This international organisation runs personal development programmes in cities around the world. Check out where they operate near you.

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