Running a business can be a daunting task. Maybe you started out with a dream of turning your passion into a lucrative business. Along the way, you discovered that there is more to being in business than actually doing business.

Being in business does not really have to be a continuously uphill battle. You can face every challenge in your business and conquer. The secret is to learn through reading books by people who have passed through the same stage and are now successful. This will give you the courage and energy you need to grow your business successfully.

Top business owners, billionaires, and extraordinarily successful individuals ascribe much of their achievements and the ability to make the right decisions in life to the lessons they learned through reading books.

Hear what some of them have to say:

I really had a lot of dreams when I was a kid, and I think a great deal of that grew out of the fact that I had a chance to read a lot.” Bill Gates

I insist on a lot of time being spent, almost every day, to just sit and think. That is very uncommon in American business. I read and think. So I do more reading and thinking and make less impulse decisions than most people in business. I do it because I like this kind of life.” Warren Buffett

Books were my pass to personal freedom. I learned to read at age three, and there discovered was a whole world to conquer that went beyond our farm in Mississippi.” Oprah Winfrey

It is difficult to become a business guru overnight. But you can make a commitment to read for 30 – 45 minutes every day. Books contain years of lessons and stories compiled into hours of reading which will put you in the top few percent of business owners in the country.

It is said that the average millionaire in America reads at least one business book in a month. If you read at least one book per month and get one idea that will help your business to grow and move forward, instead of failing, you will have twelve new ideas that will help grow your business in a year.

Did you know that 96% of businesses fail in ten years?

When you compile your twelve ideas in a year for 10 years, you will have 120 new business ideas. This will greatly enhance your business chance of surviving rather than closing up.

Did I hear you say “Hmmm, I will like to read, but there is no time and I don’t even know what to read or where to start?

Finding the time to read is hard. It may be difficult for you to sit down and read through a book. What you can do is to, first of all, choose a reading material.

When choosing books to read, make sure they are books that can actually help you to grow your business. Below are types of books you can start reading:

  1. How-to-books
  2. Memory improvement and learning books
  3. Classics
  4. Biographies of successful people
  5. Career-related books
  6. History books
  7. Self-help books
  8. Leadership books
  9. Psychology books
  10. Health related books

It is easy to quickly read how to books, but it takes a lot of time to read classics and biographies. Start with a book that will not take much time to read and finish. You can start reading it chapter by chapter – i.e. a chapter a day. You can use your break time at work, when commuting to work, on the plane when you travel, etc.

Here is a list of 33 books every entrepreneur needs on their reading list right now. You can start with that right now.

You can also listen to audio versions or podcast of books to help you gain more knowledge. A notable book podcast you can join is the book of the day show by Tai Lopez. He gives you the best business education from the world’s top entrepreneurs.

Below are some good tips for you to get the best out of your reading material:

  1. Find a comfortable place to read: It is advisable you lie down to read and not sit (except if you are in the office). Dan Lieberman said that our bodies are not designed to handle sitting for long periods of time. So, when you want to read, look for a comfortable place where you can lie down and put your feet up.
  1. Have a bookmark, pen and a notebook: As you read your book, you will come across concepts or ideas you will like to retain in your brain. Marking it and writing it down in your notebook will help you to remember it.
  1. Have an end goal: You must know what you want to learn by reading a book. It may be to learn how to manage your business growth or learn how to make the right decision for your business. You need to have an end game goal to make your reading worthwhile.
  1. Set a timer on your device: Use your smartphone or device to set a specific timeframe you want to read. For instance, it can be for 30 or 45 minutes per day. This will enable you to focus on reading for that time and not get distracted.

5. Read smarter and not harder: It is not about the volume of books you read, but about retaining what you read in your brain. You have to read the books again and again, so that the ideas you get from them are implanted into your brain. You will still need to refer to it again and again.

The key to success in business is growing in knowledge and skills. As a business owner, you need to devote at least 30 minutes or more every day to reading books. This will set you apart from your competition because most people do not read. When you read every day, it puts you in the top 5% of the crowd.