Must-read books from small-business leaders

Bob Metcalfe
Ethernet inventor, 3Com founder, recipient of the National Medal of Technology in 2005

Must read: “Atlas Shrugged,” by Ayn Rand
“I’ve read the book five times and I’m getting ready to read it again. It encourages you to have a confident belief in individual freedoms, to be aware of the clever corruptions of government and to generate and exchange values… [The book also advises that] when you have to choose between freedom and equality, choose freedom.”

Debbie Fields Rose
Founder, Mrs. Fields’ Cookies

Must read: “Man’s Search for Meaning,” by Viktor E. Frankl, and “The Little Engine That Could,” by Watty Piper
“I read ‘Man’s Search for Meaning’ when I was 18 and, looking back today, I realize how much this book has affected my zest for life, shaped my positive attitude and encouraged me to never give up. ‘The Little Engine That Could’ is an all-time favorite with me. I know that one of the greatest ways to achieve anything is to believe you can do it.”

Harvey Mackay
Chairman, Mackay Envelope Company, New York Times best-selling author of “Swim With the Sharks Without Being Eaten Alive”

Must read: “How to Win Friends and Influence People,” by Dale Carnegie
“It’s a world-class classic that has stood the test of time. Knowledge does not become power until it is used, and every concept in philosophy inside this book can be used instantly.”

Gary Heavin
Founder and CEO, Curves International

Must read: “The Secret Kingdom,” by Pat Robertson
“[Robertson’s] book illustrates 10 principles or values that the Bible teaches, and it helped me find the way to true success in business and in life. It reinforced my belief that I was, and still am, endowed with the seeds of greatness; we all are.”*

Nolan Bushnell
Founder, Atari, Chuck E. Cheese and uWink, a new digital entertainment company

Must read: “One Billion Customers,” by James McGregor
“The book talks about China’s transformation process and some of the unique processes that China requires for doing business... Every company needs a China strategy.”

Michael Bloomberg
Founder, Bloomberg L.P., Mayor of New York City

Must read: “Bloomberg by Bloomberg,” by Michael Bloomberg
“My favorite business book would, of course, be my 1997 autobiography that attempted to answer the question ‘What does Daddy do?’ for my daughters.”

Jerry Greenfield
Co-founder, Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream

Must read: “Business As Unusual: My Entrepreneurial Journey” and “Body and Soul: Profits with Principles—The Amazing Success Story of Anita Roddick & The Body Shop,” both by Anita Roddick, and “The Soul of a Business: Managing for Profit and the Common Good,” by Tom Chappell
“These books are written by two pioneering entrepreneurs—Anita Roddick founded The Body Shop and Tom Chappell founded Tom’s of Maine—and would give any reader a good understanding of socially responsible business.”


More from our partners