This article originally published on September 26, 2015.
When Daymond John was in elementary school in Queens, N.Y., he had to read books four times over to retain what they said. Now, at 46, he says he still has to reread them several times -- often two to three times each -- for the information to really sink in.
The sharp-dressed Shark Tank star and veteran investor/entrepreneur doesn’t habitually reread books as a result of being too busy or distracted the first go-round. He chalks it up to being dyslexic, something he only discovered as an adult with the onset of texting and social media.
“Because I’m dyslexic, I’ve had to read books many times,” he says. “That’s why I focus on reading ones that are high-impact and incredibly useful, full of important lessons that I can apply to my life and business.”
Despite how challenging reading is for the multi-millionaire celebrity business mentor, he forces himself to do it regularly, soaking up pearls of wisdom from contemporary and past thought leaders and leveraging them to up his game.
We recently caught up with the Infusionsoft and Shopify brand ambassador on the Sony Pictures Culver City, Calif., set of Shark Tank, where we asked him which books had the greatest impact on his life and career. Remaining humble, the FUBU co-founder didn’t seize the opportunity to plug his own books, though he easily could have (other Sharks did). He didn’t even mention them. Instead, and without a moment to prepare ahead of time, he quickly rattled off the names and authors of six books that forever changed him and that he thinks all entrepreneurs will benefit from reading, too.
“They’re smart choices not only for hopefuls, but for seasoned business pros as well,” he says. They are: