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6 Inspiring Summer Reads for Entrepreneurs Put up that hammock. Make some lemonade. And dig into these inspirational reads.

By Jess Ekstrom

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

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Looking to start lining up your summer reads? I've compiled a book list I've found has helped with my company but also contains entertaining reads. So, go grab some lemonade, find a hammock and relax with a book (or Kindle) that will make you think differently about your business:

Related: 9 Brilliant Business Books You Can Read in an Afternoon

The Promise of a Pencil: How an Ordinary Person Can Create Extraordinary Change, by Adam Braun: I'm going to guess that your initial reaction when searching for books on business is not going to be picking up a book about a non-profit.

However, through his story Braun shows how he created his organization with the mind of a business (even firing volunteers at times). If you think only for-profit entrepreneurs can show best business practices, read this book and think again.

Delivering Happiness: A Path to Profits, Passion and Purpose,. by Tony Hseih: If you want to be inspired to create an infectious company culture and have top of the line customer service, look no further. The CEO of Zappos walks you through his entrepreneurship journey, starting off with how he sold his first company to Microsoft for a casual $265 million before he built the empire that is Zappos.

Zag: The Number One Strategy of High-Performance Brands, by Marty Neumeier: This book inspired me to write about striving for different instead of more. Neumeier writes about finding the "white space" to fill instead of building off something that's already been done.

Related: Must Reads for Leaders: 10 Invaluable Books for Moving Hearts and Minds

Rework, by Jason Fried: This was the first business book I ever read, but it's one that I reference the most. Rework is direct, and to the point with a new lesson in every chapter. From hiring, to firing, to ignoring competition: This isn't a book you'll read and pass to a friend. You'll keep it in your office for reference later.

Leading Imperfectly: The Value of Being Authentic for Leaders, Professionals, and Human Beings, by James Robilotta: Being a leader isn't about doing everything right or "perfect." It's about the connections we build with others. As a business owner, you need to inspire a team of followers. Ribilotta shows how to have meaningful conversations and forces you to look inward as a leader. Plus, he's hilarious, so you'll also be entertained.

Start With Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action, by Simon Sinek: Even though this is technically a "leadership" book, it also heavily influenced our marketing. We don't show customers just what we sell, we show them why we sell it.

Related: 6 Business Books That Will Revolutionize Your Business and Change Your Life

Once in a while, you come across a book that makes you see almost everything differently after you read it. This was that book for me.

Jess Ekstrom

CEO and Founder of HeadbandsOfHope.com, Speaker and Author.

Jessica Ekstrom founded Headbands of Hope when she was a senior in college in 2012. She created the company to bring joy back to kids who have lost their hair and help fund childhood cancer research. Headbands of Hope has given tens of thousands of dollars to childhood cancer research and has donated headbands to every children's hospital in the United States.

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