8 Books to Help Entrepreneurs Become Strong Leaders

You're a strong visionary, no doubt about it. Here's how you can become a great leader, too.

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By Peter Daisyme

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You have an entrepreneurial spirit and drive, it's true. But do you have the right combination of leadership chops to succeed? That's the question every founder needs to answer honestly.

Being the best leader you can will set your company apart from others. You'll be able to share your vision with your team. You'll have no trouble delegating tasks to everyone you've hired. Best of all, you'll be able to act with empathy. As a recent EY Consulting survey shows, 89% of workers believe that empathy is a necessary component of true leadership.

You don't have to take a course to learn the lessons and tools that will improve your ability to lead, though. Delving into any of the following books written by "been-there, done-that" leaders can give you an instant education.

1. Dave Gerhardt — Founder Brand

Great leaders tend to be great storytellers. They gain buy-in from investors, staff, customers, and peers through engaging narratives. While this can seem like a talent that you either have or you don't, it's actually a teachable skill. And marketing master Dave Gerhardt is ready to be your instructor.

Gerhardt has helped many entrepreneurs find their voice. In Founder Brand, he explains how to position your unique story as the basis for your corporate brand. That way, your organization will have a constant north star to guide it through the startup and early years. As an added benefit, Gerhardt includes ways to leverage social media and other key marketing platforms to ramp up the saturation of your personal tale.

Related: The Future Storyteller of Our World Is You

2. Dr. Thomas Epperson — InnerWill

Our society has moved toward a penchant for purpose. Employees want to be guided by a leader who stands for something and has a vision. Yet it's tough to convey your values if you haven't taken the time to outline them.

Dr. Thomas Epperson's latest work, InnerWill, will help you name and claim your passion. A long-time leadership coach, Epperson concentrates his book on helping readers identify their motivators and values. Once you've pinpointed your values through purposeful self-awareness, Epperson outlines how to ignite your human potential so you can lead with confidence and authenticity.

3. Chris Prangley — The Tech Sales Warrior

As the founder of your business, you can expect to be a key player on your sales team. However, you may be new to selling, especially in competitive markets. Author Chris Prangley understands. He's reached sales superstardom in the tech world and is ready to share his best tips in The Tech Sales Warrior.

With each chapter, you'll find out all the habits Prangley credits with allowing him to move at lightning speed. By folding these behaviors into your leadership decisions, you'll be able to build stronger relationships with all stakeholders. You may even want to buy extra copies of this work to share with everyone on your sales team to crush quarterly projections time after time.

Related: 10 Ways to Maximize Your Sales Team's Performance

4. Manny Khoshbin and Rich Mintzer — Driven

Real estate entrepreneur Manny Khoshbin shares his story of perseverance that will make you believe in the American Dream all over again. Driven: The Never-Give-Up Roadmap to Massive Success goes beyond Manny's personal ride through the entrepreneurial journey to deliver the habits, mindset, and insights aspiring entrepreneurs need to turn dreams into reality.

5. Jackie Insinger — Spark Brilliance

When you're first launching your business, you can spend time guiding your employees. As your company grows, you'll have less and less contact with staff members. Yet as Jackie Insinger discusses in Spark Brilliance, you can avail yourself of ways to spark the desire to commit acts of extraordinary achievement throughout your team -- even when you're not around.

Insinger relies heavily on her executive coaching background to present a guidebook that you can use right away. After all, something as simple as cultivating a psychologically safe workplace could have a tangible effect on performance and productivity. So start sparking a little brilliance today.

Related: 5 Signs You Need an Executive Coach (and 5 You Don't)

6. Dr. Jon Finn — The Habit Mechanic

Self-improvement is a must for any leader. Nevertheless, it can be tough to figure out what to keep and what to change about yourself. No need to stress about it. Dr. Jon Finn spent 20 years putting together The Habit Mechanic, the toolkit and manual for life designed for achievers like you.

This isn't just another self-help book, though. Finn's approach to personal transformation leans on principles from neuroscience, behavioral science, and psychology. Elevate your Super Habits. Gain a sense of work-life balance. Become the leader your employees and brand need.

7. Dr. Travis Corcoran — RESTORING REASON

Sometimes, it can be hard to know who to trust -- even when you're looking in the mirror. That's why you'll appreciate RESTORING REASON. In his work, Dr. Travis Corcoran explores how to use reason and classical philosophical thinking to trust yourself to solve any problem.

You can be sure that life will hand you obstacles every day as the leader of an organization. Use Corcoran's suggestions to make sense of what matters and what doesn't. Logic isn't relegated to the numbers that your data management system reveals. Logic can serve as a powerful force to assist you in making big and small corporate decisions.

Being in charge has its pitfalls and roadblocks, that's for sure. Regardless, you can meet the challenges of leading head-on when you have dependable, proven recommendations from those who have been down the entrepreneurial road before you.

8. Charlena Berry — Breaking the Stigma

Is your entrepreneurial experience leading you into an industry with a tarnished reputation or a difficult to comprehend mission? If so, Breaking the Stigma belongs on your bedside or desktop reading table.

Cannabis Business Growth founder Charlena Berry wrote this book after tackling the obstacles inherent in the cannabis sector. Through trial and error, as well as a plucky attitude, Berry prospered despite the odds. You'll be inspired by her journey. You'll get plenty of insider details on how to overcome all types of negativity, too. As a result, you can build up your resistance to naysayers and lead with self-assurance.

Peter Daisyme

Entrepreneur Leadership Network Contributor

Co-founder of Hostt

Peter Daisyme is the co-founder of Hostt, specializing in helping businesses host their website for free for life. Previously, he was co-founder of Pixloo, a company that helped people sell their homes online, which was acquired in 2012.

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