Summer Must-Reads for Successful Business Owners

Summer 2015 is here and family trips are just around the corner. With your family home from school and busy with summer activities, you should make time for yourself, too. This is my favorite time to get into a good book. When you're in business for yourself, you have the freedom to carve out time in your day to bone up on how to run your business while basking in the shade of your backyard, with the background sounds of your family soaking up summer. If you aren't sure of what good books you can read now to help your business, I decided to give you a few of my favorites in different categories. Let's begin:


If you could use some help getting more customers, there are some great recent reads for you to pick up. Staying on people's minds is essential in marketing, and you'll learn how in Jacky Fitt's How to Get Inside Someone's Mind and Stay There.

If you're trying to learn how to DIY public relations, add The Little Book of Big PR: 100+ Quick Tips to Get Your Small Business Noticed by Jennefer Witter to your Kindle wishlist. And if social media still stupefies you, reading my own How to Become a Social Media Ninja: 101 Ways to Dominate Your Competition Online will make you an expert before your pedicure dries.

Starting a Business

If you want to start a business this summer and don't have time for months of planning, invest in Dan Norris' The 7 Day Startup: You Don't Learn Until You Launch. And Guy Kawasaki's always got great advice: in his book, The Art of the Start 2.0: The Time-Tested, Battle-Hardened Guide for Anyone Starting Anything (written with Lindsey Filby) he teaches you to use cutting-edge tools and strategies to start something great today.


If you're like me, you could always use more tips to be more efficient. I like The 21 Minute Entrepreneur: The 21 Minute Morning Ritual That Will Double Your Productivity Forever And Set Your Day Up For Success by R.M. Conan for its easy rituals you can add to your routine. And if you have trouble focusing on the tasks at hand, Jamie Smart can help in The Little Book of Clarity: A Quick Guide to Focus and Declutter Your Mind.

All-in-One Small Business Tips

If, rather than reading different books for every aspect of your business, you'd rather read one that encompasses everything you need to know, check out my book, Become Your Own Boss in 12 Months. I did my best to include everything you need to start and grow a business, from building out a life plan to marketing strategies to hiring employees. There's also great advice on launching a successful crowdfunding strategy, building a great website, developing your content strategy and leveraging social media. 


Who couldn't use more money for their business? Crowdfunding: Funding: Beginner's Guide -- Find Funding Fast & Fly! (Crowdfunding, Funding, Funding a Startup, Grants, Kickstarter, Crowd Funding, Business Loans, Small Business Finance) by Marlon Cage will teach you what you need to know about crowdsourcing your financing so that you can grow your business.

Robert Kiyosaki, of Rich Dad, Poor Dad fame, has a new inspirational book that can help you figure out your leverage military leadership in your business: 8 Lessons in Military Leadership: For Entrepreneurs. And if you need some help doing your own accounting, pick up a copy of Bookkeeping for Dummies by Lita Epstein.

What's on your list? I want to hear from you! Shout-out a few of your favorites so I can add some new books to my list.  

This article was originally published under the title SmallBizLady's Summer Reading List 2015: 11 Must-Read Books to Grow Your Business at

Melinda F. Emerson, SmallBizLady  is America's #1 small business expert. She is an author, speaker and small business coach whose areas of expertise include small business start-up, business development and social media marketing. She writes a weekly column for the New York Times, publishes a resource blog, which is syndicated through The Huffington Post. She also hosts a weekly talk show on Twitter called #SmallBizChat for small business owners. As a brand, she reaches 1.5 million entrepreneurs a week on the internet. As CEO of Quintessence Multimedia, Melinda develops audio, video and written content to fulfill her mission to end small business failure. Forbes Magazine named Melinda Emerson one of the #1 Woman for Entrepreneurs to follow on Twitter. Melinda has been featured on MSNBC, Fox News, NBC Nightly News and in Fortune, The Washington Post, USA Today, Wall Street Journal and Black Enterprise. She is the bestselling author of "Become Your Own Boss in 12 months; A Month-by-Month Guide to a Business That Works," and the ebook How to Become a Social Media Ninja; 101 Ways to Dominate Your Competition Online.