I know it’s difficult sometimes to sift through the wide array of excellent business books that are out there, so I often recommend books that I feel have had a significant effect on the growth of Momentum Public Affairs (including The Campaign Coach program), in hopes that fellow entrepreneurs, business colleagues, young professionals and students can gain the same benefit from them that my companies and clients have. These books stand out among the many that I read, and I hope you enjoy them.

We also are looking at the same mountain of material that you are, so if you have suggestions on books that helped take your business or professional life to the next level, feel free to share!

The Compound Effect

by Darren Hardy

I have probably recommended this book more than any other I’ve read over time, as its message is tangible, and easy to implement. The concept is simple – and you’ve heard it before – if I offer to give you either $10,000,000 or a penny that will double every day for a month, which one do you take? You take the penny and sweat it out for 29 days before you eventually blow the $10 mil out of the water by the end of the month. The editor-in-chief of SUCCESS magazine, Hardy’s premise is where else in your life can you make small, incremental and non-threatening changes to your daily habits that will yield amazing results in the long run? Your savings? Your time management? Your marriage? I’ve put it into practice on multiple occasions, and it works every time – because the approach is manageable, encouraging, and sets you up for success. Highly recommended – buy it, read it and use it! Get it on Amazon!

The 4-Hour Work Week

by Tim Ferriss
I’ve recommended to anyone starting a business, or looking for that next phase of their lives that will get them out of the 9-to-5 doldrums (or, 9-9 these days, it seems for so many), to read Tim Ferriss’ 4-Hour Work Week. Ferriss, as anyone who listens to his podcast or watches his television show knows, intertwines practical, real-life steps you can take to grow your business and achieve the kind of freedom that entrepreneurship brings, with inspiring stories of real people, like you and me, who have taken their lives, their passions and their work to higher levels. Expect to be inspired, but also expect to be challenged. Ferriss has built a reputation of challenging himself (Newsweek called Tim “the world’s best human guinea pig”), and because of that, doesn’t offer much patience for someone who isn’t willing to push through barriers. I know that I would not have taken some of the chances I’ve taken – and my business wouldn’t be where it is today – without having read this book (multiple times). Get it on Amazon!

Talk Like Ted

by Carmine Gallo
So many of the resources you can get to help you learn to be a public speaker focus on the actual act of public speaking – overcoming the fear of putting yourself “out there.” Carmine Gallo’s book is not about how to be a public speaker, but how to be a great storyteller. The kind of speaker that people pay money to hear. I found Talk Like Ted to be incredibly valuable not only for public speaking, but for any form of communication where you need to provide value for your attendees, listeners, followers, etc. There is an art to effective public speaking, and using real-world examples from the Ted Talks library, Gallo walks you through how to connect with your audience in a meaningful and memorable way. I’ve found myself incorporating Talk Like Ted’s themes not just in my own presentations, but across all of my communications channels. Get it on Amazon!

Smarter, Better, Faster

by Charles Duhigg
As the title of Charles Duhigg’s (The Power of Habit) next book suggests, Smarter, Better, Faster is all about taking your life, business, relationships and whatever else is important to you to the next level. As he does so well, Duhigg uses real world examples, engaging storytelling and what he calls the “science of productivity” to demonstrate that emphasis on things like focus, innovation and goal-setting is the recipe for true success. This book isn’t about time management, or finding a better way to check items off of your to-do list. It’s about advancing the things that important to you to advance in a big way, by doing things, well, smarter, better and faster. Very inspiring book. Get it on Amazon!

Walt Disney: An American Original

by Bob Thomas
It’s no secret to anyone who knows me that I’m a big Walt Disney fan – and it’s not only because of the Haunted Mansion or the monster cinnamon roll at Gaston’s Tavern. The brilliance of a man’s vision that thrives more than a half-century after his death can only be fully appreciated knowing the story of how Disney got to where it is today. Bob Thomas, a former journalist who also penned biographies for Bing Crosby, Fred Astaire and William Holden, interviewed dozens upon dozens of people close to Walt Disney to put together an inspiring story of how an unschooled cartoonist from Kansas City became one of the most influential figures of the 20th century and beyond. If you have a vision for your business, knowing Disney’s story will help you understand what it takes to see it through. It helps, of course, if you’re a fan of Mickey Mouse. Get it on Amazon!