My career has been one atypical journey so far. After college, I was rejected from a dietetic internship (twice) and decided to open my own business a few months afterward. It’s taken me several years to build DeLacy Wellness, and in early 2016, I had absolutely no clue what I was doing. While Google was helpful for basic questions like “how to file for an LLC”, I needed deeper guidance on how to build a cohesive brand, how to market, and even, how to attract customers. Luckily, I met a fellow entrepreneur, Chris, who pointed me in the right direction with some suggestions. After starting my first audiobook “The 4 Hour Work Week” by Tim Ferris, I was hooked. I found several other audiobooks that had the answers and the inspiration I was looking for. Regardless of whether you own your own business, are thinking about leaving your job, or are happily employed at your current job, I want to share these resources to inspire anyone at any point in their career. Here are five of the amazing audiobooks (and podcasts) that inspired me to get to where I am today.
The Pumpkin Plan by Mike Michalowicz – This audiobook is not only informative, but an enjoyable listen as well. It addresses issues that many first time businesses face, like figuring out how to systematize your business processes, how to create something that your customers will love, and how to scale your business so that it works for you instead of the other way around. The practicality of the information in The Pumpkin Plan can be used for growing whatever business you might have by focusing on what is bringing you money while cutting out what is costing you money. Between the humor, carefully crafted metaphors, and the useful knowledge it offers, I really enjoyed this audiobook, and it’s one I recommend to anyone who asks me for entrepreneurial advice.
Start with Why by Simon Sinek – I love this audiobook so much that it was my June book club pick! Start with Why is a bit more esoteric, so it’s great for those of you who are content with your current job and just want to be re-inspired. For anyone who is considering starting their own business, I implore you to listen to it! This audiobook will help you solidify the deeper meaning behind your brand, and ultimately will point you in the direction that you’d like it to go. Whether you are a sole-proprietor or have employees, it emphasizes unification to ensure that what you think, say, and do are all in alignment. If you don’t have time to listen to the whole thing, at least watch Sinek’s TED talk “How Great Leaders Inspire Action”. He is so compelling that every time I listen to either of these, I become inspired that I just want to sit down and plan the next 5 years of my brand…no joke!
How I Built This With Guy Raz (Podcast) – As a long-time NPR listener, I was thrilled when they created this podcast in 2016. The episodes of “How I Built This” feature well-known companies like Yelp, Peloton, Zappos, and more. Even though some of these businesses are not remotely related to DeLacy Wellness in offering, the stories are all interesting as they share each unique journey that those entrepreneurs took. I find this podcast incredibly inspiring, because most of the innovators admit to struggling with their business at one point or another. It’s a great reminder that big companies once started off small, and I find this motivating whenever I feel I’ve hit a business “road bump”. These podcasts are shorter than audiobooks and, of course, more anecdotal (which I prefer), so they’re great to listen to on your commute or while at the gym.
Profit First by Mike Michalowicz – You’ll notice yet another audiobook by Mr. Michalowicz! He sure knows what he’s talking about when it comes to business, or at least I think so. Profit First isn’t as fun or lively as The Pumpkin Plan, but it contains the nitty gritty information you need to truly run a profitable business. The core message mirrors the title; money is the foundation of business and baking profit into your business is crucial to be successful. This audiobook drills in the importance of generating profit in order to keep your business alive, providing tips on how to eliminate unnecessary expenses as well as how to even set up your business bank accounts for a cash-management system. If you don’t feel comfortable with finances, this book is definitely the place to start before building your business.
Good to Great by James C. Collins – The last audiobook on my list is all about discipline, a concept which I am passionate about (check out my blog on discipline after this)! Good to Great is another audiobook that can be helpful no matter where you are in your career as it teaches fundamental lessons surrounding discipline. The consistency of hiring the correct people, keeping them focused, avoiding distractions, and understanding your business’s goals is what takes a company from “good” to “great”, and this audiobook outlines these ideas in a way that all ties back to discipline. If you feel like you (or your business) needs to get whipped into shape, I think you’ll enjoy this one as much as I did.
For time’s sake, I’m stopping at five of my favorite business audiobooks, but there are so many more that have inspired me throughout the years. Have you listened to any of these? If so, comment your thoughts below, I’d love to hear about them! Additionally, if you have your own favorite entrepreneurial audiobooks or podcasts let me know so I can listen to them and maybe even feature them on the Bodypeace app! Until next time!