2020 has been a tough year for most sectors, especially with regard to business growth. With 2021 approaching, the outlook is brighter; vaccinations are beginning to be rolled out and the future of businesses seems more promising. In fact, it may be the one of the best times to concentrate on growing your business. As the world emerges from what has effectively been a hibernation, people are going to be hungry to get on with normal life. This will create opportunities for the entrepreneur wanting to stimulate business growth.

With this in mind, along with opportunities for growing your business beckoning, we thought that it would be a good time to review some reading matter that will help you achieve your goals in 2021. The following is our recommended reading list to help make sure that 2021 is a year of growth.

Deep Work

by Cal Newport
Deep Work by Cal Newport

If you are someone that struggles to remain focused on a task or goal, then this book is a must-read. Cal Newport’s book is a masterpiece on how to separate the wheat from the chaff.

In this book, the author sets out to give you the tools you need to thrive in the business environment, by not just remaining focused on your main goal, but by doing so without losing sight of the bigger picture.

It is a no-nonsense approach to the work ethics and focus techniques that any entrepreneur can benefit from. In it, he takes you through a four-rule training program that explains in detail just how to achieve the goals you have set out for yourself.

It is a dry subject that the author makes interesting by giving real world examples that are both engaging and insightful – and may surprise you, too!

A highly recommended read for those who find it difficult to set goals and stick to them.

The Power of Broke

by Daymond John
The Power of Broke by Daymond John

Let’s face it: this year has been hard for a huge number of people, and a lot of us aren’t as well off as we were a year ago. For many people, their dream of starting a business has been left in tatters by circumstances that were completely out of their control.

Sound familiar?

In his book, The Power of Broke, Daymond John explains how to take this adversity and turn it into a positive. John is one of the stars of ABC’s Shark Tank, and speaks from experience. The book explains how, rather than being a disadvantage, being broke can actually be turned on its head and become the driving force that leads to success.

In these difficult times John explains how to turn scarcity into riches; a thoroughly good read regardless of your circumstances.

Grinding it Out, The Making of McDonalds

by Ray Kroc
Grinding it Out, The Making of McDonalds by Ray Kroc

This is not a book that is new to 2021, but is still a highly recommended read for any budding entrepreneur. Kroc must be one of the most revered entrepreneurs of all time: he was the man who took a hamburger restaurant and turned it into the global brand that is McDonalds.

If you want to get inside the mind of a true entrepreneur and see what makes them tick, then this is the book for you. Not only that, but the tips and tricks you can glean from reading this are unsurpassable. If you sometimes struggle to see the road ahead and want to obtain some inspiration from someone who has ‘been there, done that’, then this book is perfect.

And of course, there is the fact that it is simply a stunning read. 

Shoe Dog, A Memoir by the Creator of Nike

by Phil Knight
Shoe Dog, A Memoir by the Creator of Nike by Phil Knight

A tale similar to Ray Kroc, this book sets out to tell the story of how Nike became the biggest sports brand in the world. Phil Knight details the roadmap he took; from selling cheap Japanese imported shoes from the back of the van, to being a business that sells $30 billion worth of products each year.

For those seeking inspiration, there is no finer read. The obstacles he overcame to reach this level of success are as relevant in today’s age as they were when Phil set up his company over fifty years ago.

Bill Gates has gone on record to say that this is one of his five favorite books, and we can’t give a better recommendation than that.

The Passion Economy: The New Rules for Thriving in the Twenty-First Century

by Adam Davidson
The Passion Economy: The New Rules for Thriving in the Twenty-First Century by Adam Davidson

We have all heard it: the tale of a collapsing job market as robots and computers take over our jobs and businesses. Not so, argues Adam Davidson in his groundbreaking book. In this book, Davidson argues that contrary to popular belief, there has never been a better time to take advantage of what the modern world has to offer and turn it to your fiscal advantage.

The book cites examples of people who have done just that (and it isn’t what you expect!): from Amish farmers to accountants, it details how to thrive in the modern world.

A must-read for budding entrepreneurs in the 21st Century.

Tiny Habits

by BJ Fogg
Tiny Habits by BJ Fogg

This is a New York Times bestseller, and it is easy to see why. I’m sure we’ve all been there: the start of a big project, the glimmer of light at the end shining no brighter than a candle-flicker, embarking on a painful, seemingly-endless road.

BJ Fogg explains how to turn that goal, and the road to it, into one and the same thing: a task not to be dreaded, but to be embraced. If you feel that you are overwhelmed by what is coming, then this book explains how to break it down and enjoy the journey to success.

Start With Why

by Simon Sinek
Start With Why by Simon Sinek

Ted Talks are amongst some of the most popular videos on the internet. They cover a huge range of subjects and a lot of them are inspirational. Simon Sinek’s Ted Talk speech is the third most watched of all time, and this book is based on that talk.

This book covers the ‘Why Factor.’ Why are some businesses more successful than others? Why are some people influential, yet others with equally grand ideas are unheard of?

These are crucial questions for entrepreneurs wanting to get to the top and the answers may well surprise you.

This is our last, but by no means least, book recommendation for 2021.

Have any other books on your reading list for the new year? Let us know in the comments!

This article originally published on GREY Journal.