12 business books to help you level up your career

12 insightful books to help you rethink your career

In Reading Lists by G.G. Andrew

12 business books to help you level up your career
Great Resignation or not, people these days are reimagining their employment in exciting new ways. Whether you’re new to the business world or are a seasoned pro, there’s always room to grow — to network smarter, increase your client base, or turn your passion into profit. Written by successful CEOs and other inspiring authors, the books and audiobooks below will give you the tools, knowledge, and motivation to take the next step in your business endeavors.

If you’ve dreamed of starting your own business but have been wary of the financial risk, give this audiobook a listen. It offers a blueprint for starting your company from the ground up as well as practical strategies for staying financially healthy while making progress toward your goals. One of the most surprising tips? Don’t quit your day job.

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As the first Black female CEO of a Fortune 500 company, Ursula Burns has a wealth of experience to draw from. In this memoir, she shares her inspiring career path, from a humble childhood to earning a degree in engineering, rising in corporate America, and becoming CEO of Xerox — breaking barriers along the way.

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If you hate networking, you’re not alone. This guide helps take the sting out of corporate connecting by showing you how networking is a process of building relationships that can actually be enjoyable. You'll be so grateful for the many tips on smoothing out conversational awkwardness, you might take this book to your next business luncheon.

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Amazon Unbound by Brad Stone

Everyone knows Amazon is a huge success story. But this New York Times bestseller lays out how it got there, intertwining the company’s roots with that of its famous founder, Jeff Bezos. Informative and inspiring, this book examines what it took for Amazon to expand — and keep expanding — to an unprecedented degree.

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Radical Candor by Kimberly Scott

A must-read for managers, this bestseller helps you cultivate healthy relationships with your co-workers by developing the skills of honest conversation. With experience managing others at both Google and Apple, Scott breaks down how these open conversations allow us to give feedback, learn from mistakes, make decisions, and so much more.

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Hot Seat by Jeff Immelt

Former General Electric CEO Jeff Immelt takes a look at his triumphs and his mistakes in this revealing book. Taking charge just a week before 9/11 and still at the helm during the Great Recession in 2008 and other high-profile situations in the years that followed, Immelt faced many challenges at General Electric. From his example, you’ll observe what it takes to be a leader — including the importance of decision-making, communication, perseverance, and timing.

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You're Invited by Jon Levy

In this recently-released New York Times bestseller, behavior scientist Jon Levy teaches you how to create valuable connections. Levy himself experienced the power of connecting while creating a community of influencers through the simple act of preparing and sharing a meal. Here he shares what he’s learned, and the benefits to workers both in and out of the office.

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Crushing It! by Gary Vaynerchuk

If you're looking to hone your personal and professional brand, look no further than Crushing It! With advice gathered from dozens of successful influencers, you’ll discover how to leave your mark on the digital world, no matter which social platforms you’re on. Even Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson found the book useful, calling it “a must-have for all individuals who want to be the best at what they do.”

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Can you learn about leadership and company culture from studying Genghis Khan or Japanese Samurai? You can in this fascinating book, which uses historical and modern examples to show how the power of organizational culture can make or break a company’s success. Along the way, you’ll see how to shape your current work culture through your own behavior.

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The Mom Test by Rob Fitzpatrick

This fun, actionable book starts with a simple idea: Never ask family or friends if your business idea is good, because they won't tell you the truth. The people you should be asking are your customers. This guide shows you how to do this, from choosing potential customers to learning how to approach them, and which questions you should be asking.

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The Creator's Code by Amy Wilkinson

Think you don't have what it takes to create and lead a company? Think again. Based on interviews with 200 business leaders, this book distills the six most important skills that lead to success, all of which you can improve: spotting opportunities, focusing on the future, making quick decisions based on observations, learning from failure, building networks, and practicing generosity.

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Creative, Inc. by Joy Deangdeelert Cho and Meg Mateo Illasco

If you're in a creative field, this guide written by two freelance professionals deserves a place on your desk. In it, you'll find valuable advice on portfolios, earnings, marketing, legal aspects, clients, and even work/life balance. Just as helpful are the interspersed interviews with artists sharing what they’ve learned — stories which are guaranteed to inspire you to make your own dreams come true.

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About the Author: G.G. Andrew

G.G. is a freelance writer as well as an author of romance and women's fiction. A Texas transplant, she lives outside Houston with her husband and two sons, both of whom are on the autism spectrum. In her spare time, she enjoys browsing bookstores, yoga, paper crafts, themed food, swimming, and anything related to Halloween. She's probably drinking tea right now.
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