Reading about business can give you a leg up in your industry, or just provide timeless advice for conducting yourself in the workplace.
Whether you run a company, work for one, or work for yourself, these 20 books are guaranteed to teach you something new. Scroll down to see which books made the list.
Disclosure: Jeff Bezos is an investor in Business Insider through hispersonal investment company Bezos Expeditions.
Yahoo had been through hell and back before Marissa Mayer, at the age of 37, took the helm of the company in 2012. Just her presence gave many employees hope for the future of Yahoo, but many also doubted she could actually save the internet company -- which has encountered turbulence of late.
Insightfully written by INSIDER editor-in-chief Nicholas Carlson, 'Marissa Mayer and the Fight to Save Yahoo!' traces Mayer's journey from Google exec to Yahoo CEO, and her transformation of Yahoo from an old-fashioned content company to an innovative tech company.
A business reporter for the New York Times and a devoted practitioner of meditation for two decades, Gelles shares the reasons why mindfulness meditation may be the key to happier employees, more efficient companies, and less stress in the office.
Companies from General Mills to Patagonia to Google have adopted mindfulness practices and have seen reduced health-care costs among employees, and better leadership outlooks among upper management.
18. 'Empire of Deception: The Incredible Story of a Master Swindler Who Seduced a City and Captivated the Nation' by Dean Jobb
In 1923 Leo Koretz, a charismatic and fast-talking attorney in Chicago, vanished completely -- but not before swindling hundreds of people out of millions of dollars.
A story almost too incredible to believe, 'Empire of Deception' recounts the history of one of the longest frauds in history -- 'one that out-ponzied Charles Ponzi himself' -- and the dark, seductive side of business.
Today, KIND bars have become the poster child of the healthy snack bar trend, boasting natural ingredients that also taste good. But when Daniel Lubetzky first started the company back in 2004, most people didn't think a tasty and nutritious energy bar was possible.
Now the fastest-growing maker of healthy snacks in the country, KIND lives by a 'not-only-for-profit' business model that Lubetzky developed over the course of his incredible upbringing and history.
16. 'Becoming Steve Jobs: The Evolution of a Reckless Upstart into a Visionary Leader' by Brent Schlender and Rick Tetzeli
Schlender and Tetzeli take an in-depth look at what made Apple cofounder Steve Jobs such a visionary: He may have been seen as an arrogant genius by both his admirers and his competitors, but Jobs was a lot more complex than that, as the authors demonstrate through old interviews with Jobs himself as well as with other executives in and outside of Apple.
Through the history of Apple's iconic products, Schlender and Tetzeli tell a compelling and humanising story of one of the most famous innovators in recent history.
15. 'Data and Goliath: The Hidden Battles to Collect your Data and Control Your World' by Bruce Schneier
In 'Data and Goliath,' security expert Bruce Schneier delves into the world of digital surveillance: how your information is discovered, who's finding it, and how it's used.
But he also offers a solution to the violation some feel by the government and other entities' access to their personal information without compromising security. Schneier breaks down the issue simply and logically, taking an even look at both sides of the coin.
'You already have everything you need for an amazing career,' writes Jon Acuff. 'In fact, you've had it since day one.'
After 16 years in corporate America, Acuff shares what he's learned about creating the career you want by establishing a 'career savings account' that gives you the ability to call a do-over whether you're 22 or 62.
13. 'Future Crimes: Everything Is Connected, Everyone Is Vulnerable and What We Can Do About It' by Marc Goodman
A New York Times and Wall Street Journal best-seller, 'Future Crimes' exposes how vulnerable you make yourself simply by going online.
Like 'Data and Goliath' author Bruce Schneier, Marc Goodman is also a security expert who writes a book so conspiratorial it reads like science fiction, when in fact the risk is very real and deeply rooted.
12. 'Triggers: Creating Behaviour That Lasts -- Becoming the Person You Want to Be' by Marshall Goldsmith and Mark Reiter
What factors can derail us in life? At work? Are they environmental? Personal? Professional? Or some combination of the three?
Step by step, Marshall Goldsmith goes through the process of defining triggers, why they make us react the way they do, how to identify ours, and how to change our responses to them in order to become the best versions of ourselves.
Slaughter's viral 2012 Atlantic article 'Why Women Still Can't Have It All' proved an important conversation piece about how difficult many women find it to balance work and children -- Slaughter included, as she learned when she left her job at the US State Department to be with her family.
'Unfinished Business' is a continuation of this conversation, in which Slaughter also offers a vision for how men and women can each achieve work-life balance.
Everyone from Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and Microsoft cofounder Bill Gates to New Jersey Governor Chris Christie have been taking steps for years to reform public-education systems across the country -- but it hasn't always worked.
Russakoff writes a refreshing modern history of public education that will appeal to teachers, students, parents, and anyone with an interest in the future of learning.
While some forms of technology are intended to make workers' jobs easier, others could replace workers altogether. If you've ever heard someone joke that a robot will be doing their job in a given number of years, how real is the fear behind the joke? And how likely is it for the fear to be actualized?
Martin Ford's book discusses the implications and the pros and cons of technology in the workforce.
8. 'Work Rules!: Insights from Inside Google That Will Transform How You Live and Lead' by Laszlo Bock
As the head of the people operations department at Google, Laszlo Bock has collected a plethora of tips on how to attract the best talent, give and receive feedback, and learn from your employees.
Bock incorporates psychological theories, strategy, and creativity to create success for yourself and inspire it in others.
While researching economics, Richard Thaler realised that the biggest factor in economic change is human behaviour (particularly human error).
In order to change the way people think about economics and the world, Thaler, a professor at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business, examines the biases we succumb to when making decisions, particularly decisions that could be considered 'misbehaving' -- behaving in a way that is, according to Thaler, inconsistent with the idealised model of behaviour at the heart of economic theory.
6. 'Team of Teams: New Rules of Engagement for a Complex World' by General Stanley McChrystal and Tantum Collins
Is there a way to combine power and size with speed and agility? General Stanley McChrystal seems to think so.
After decades commanding US Military forces, McChrystal applies his tactics to other large-scale organisations, showing how the strategies he and his colleagues learned in the military are transferrable to companies, nonprofits, and other entities.
Robert B. Reich, a public policy professor at the University of California at Berkeley, examines one by one the shrinking middle class, wealth disparity, and how capitalism in its current form is failing in the United States.
There's hope, he argues, but raising the minimum wage and pouring more money into education reform alone isn't going to do the trick. Reich's passionate book calls for stricter, more decisive action to reverse the damage done.
Why are some people better at making predictions than others? That's the question Tetlock and Gardner attempt to answer in their New York Times bestseller.
The authors draw on years of research and interviews with so-called superforecasters, some of whom are regular people (a ballroom dancer, a filmmaker, and a retired handyman, for example) with a talent for prediction far beyond even capabilities of 'experts.' 'Superforecasting' tries to dissect how they do it and whether it's innate or teachable.
Bloomberg technology reporter Ashlee Vance provides an unfiltered look at the life of Tesla and SpaceX CEO Elon Musk -- one of the most innovative and, as Vance seems to describe him, most diffcult people to work with.
Vance spoke with 300 people to compile the biography, including Tesla and SpaceX employees and even Musk himself. The book received some pushback from Musk regarding a couple of quotes he claims he never said, but the best seller is still an incredibly eye-opening peek into the life of one of the most fascinating people in business.
When social scientist Brené Brown set out to discover what people -- everyone from Fortune 500 CEOs and military leaders to teachers and artists -- have in common when they get back up after falling down, it turned out that it was emotion and their ability to make themselves vulnerable that informed a successful recovery process.
Brown's book is a warm guide to embracing one's mistakes and setbacks and getting up again regardless.
Author and journalist Elizabeth Gilbert came out with her best seller 'Eat Pray Love' in 2007, in which she took a life-changing journey across Indonesia, India, and Bali to discover herself.
Now, in 'Big Magic,' Gilbert provides intimate details into her creative process, including the attitudes and habits she's adopted to find success -- and ways that others can create the same for themselves.
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