Vacations, sunshine, bug spray, sunscreen, longer days, blooming flowers. There are dozens of staples and traditions that remind us of summertime. For many business owners, summer marks the season for reflection and recharge. It’s a time that we dedicate to assessing the first half of the year and planning for Q3 and Q4.

In addition to many of the summer staples listed above, all business leaders love a good summer reading list. That’s why the team at Kenwood Management has put together a list of our favorite books which are packed with insightful business knowledge that you can apply directly to your operation — perfect for a relaxing summer read.

The Go-Giver, Bob Burg

“The Go-Giver” by Bob Burg is a favorite of Kenwood Management and one that we have highlighted many times in our previous content. The ideas and philosophies discussed in the book have become foundational principles on which our operations have been built. In the book, Burg outlines five laws that every business and owner should follow:

  1. The Law of Value — Your true worth is determined by how much more you give in value than you take in payment.
  2. The Law of Compensation — Your income is determined by how many people you serve and how well you serve them.
  3. The Law of Influence — Your influence is determined by how abundantly you place other people’s interests first.
  4. The Law of Authenticity — The most valuable gift you have to offer is yourself.
  5. The Law of Receptivity — The key to effective giving is to stay open to receiving.

“The Go-Giver” discusses each of these five laws in-depth and explains how they can be applied to achieve stratospheric success.

Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less, Greg McKeown

"Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less" by Greg McKeown is the perfect book for any business owner who feels overwhelmed, overworked, and stretched too thin. In this book, McKeown explains how you can achieve more by doing less. While it sounds like an impossibly difficult task to achieve, “Essentialism” provides actionable exercises you can complete in order to realize this critical goal.

McKeown’s website explains it best, “By applying a more selective criteria for what is essential, the pursuit of less allows us to regain control of our own choices so we can channel our time, energy and effort into making the highest possible contribution toward the goals and activities that matter.”

If you are looking to regain control or find balance in your business and life, “Essentialism” is the ideal book for your summer reading list. The book has received high praise from some of the nation's most prominent business leaders, such as Steve Harvey, Jeff Weiner, Adam Grant, and Daymond John.

The Obstacle is the Way, Ryan Holiday

“The Obstacle is the Way” by Ryan Holiday is a #1 New York Times Bestseller. The book's timeless advice can be applied to any adversity or difficulty in life or business. The book draws its inspiration from the ancient Greek philosophy of stoicism. A stoic focuses on leveraging the pain and adversity of their journey to overcome obstacles in the way. As the philosopher Marcus Aurelius stated 2000 years ago: “The impediment to action advances action. What stands in the way becomes the way.”

Throughout the book, Holiday shows examples of how American business leaders utilized this philosophy of stoicism to overcome impossible challenges. Feeling stuck in a rut? Is there an obstacle in your way that seems unbeatable? Ryan Holiday and “The Obstacle is the Way” should be at the top of your summer reading list.

The Hard Thing About Hard Things: Building a Business When There Are No Easy Answers, Ben Horowitz

Building and running a business is hard. Ben Horowitz, author and one of the most respected entrepreneurs in Silicon Valley, dives into this topic in his book “The Hard Thing About Hard Things: Building a Business When There Are No Easy Answers.”

This critically acclaimed book explains the difficulties that come with running a business. From firing employees to scaling your business and developing a CEO mentality, Horowitz discusses it all. No matter if you’re a veteran entrepreneur looking for advice or a new entrepreneur aspiring to become a business owner, “The Hard Thing About Hard Things” is an insightful summer read to add to your list.

The Personal MBA: Master the Art of Business, Josh Kaufman

“The Personal MBA: Master the Art of Business” by Josh Kaufman offers a “world-class business education in a single volume.” Getting an MBA is an expensive and lengthy process. This book offers a consolidated approach, teaching you the principles you need to know in order to run a smooth and successful business operation.

Looking to advance your knowledge of the core business fundamentals? Would you like to sharpen your business skills? Kaufman’s “The Personal MBA” will save you thousands of dollars in tuition while providing a memorable and concise reading experience. Add this book to your summer reading list and learn the principles it takes most people a lifetime to master.

If you enjoy one, or more, of these books, we would love to hear your feedback. All Summer long, the Kenwood Community remains active. Please let us know what you think. Happy summer!

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