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100 Business Books that have influenced 100 Business Owners (Part 10)

Ciara Ferguson
16 July 2021

Welcome to part 10 of our 100 business books that have influenced 100 business owners.

I normally open with a quote from a famous author or a famous book but I think the only appropriate quote for today’s blog is: “woah, we’re half-way there” – Bon Jovi-  as we are officially half-way there hitting 50 out of 100 books for our 100 business books that have influenced 100 business owners. Don’t forget, at the end- we will be creating an e-book containing all 100 books available for you to download so keep an eye out for that!

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Today we are starting off with Conor Meehan, Co-Founder of Nú Infusions who chose: Fully Alive: Using the Lessons of the Amazon to Live Your Mission in Business and Life by Tyler Gage. “Fully Alive tells the story of how two young American entrepreneurs built the world’s first supply chain of guayusa tea, a caffeinated Amazonian holly leaf that had previously only been consumed by indigenous communities in Ecuador. This product is the core of our business also, so naturally we were curious to learn about the industry’s origins. But apart from that, the book also provides a fascinating and inspiring perspective on how to tackle the more general challenges of starting a business. It combines lessons from starting a US energy drink company with insights from indigenous Amazonian cultures, something which sounds bizarre but which the author, Tyler Gage, manages to weave together really well. I generally like books that generate insights from real life stories, and this is a great example of that. Would highly recommend for anyone looking for a business book with a bit of an alternative approach.”

Next up, we have the book Tribes by Seth Godwin chosen by Co-Founder and Creative Director of Stola London, Poppy Fordham. “The book that has most influenced me is Tribes by Seth Godwin. He is an inspiring writer and encourages you to take risks and follow your passions. I would never have started my own business were it not for his rational arguments on fear of failure. Godwin has also installed in me the importance of marketing and standing out form the crowd. I am a fan of all his books but this one in particular provides a fascinating account of human behavior. Godwin highlights everyone has an opportunity to start a movement – to bring together a tribe of like-minded people and do amazing things. This is what led me to start Stola London and pioneer hemp pyjamas for women.”

Alan Andrews Owner of GUJI Coffee Bar said hands down the book that influenced him most was Dale Carnegie‘s How to Win Friends and Influence People. And although this book has been mentioned before- if anything I think that means you should get out there and read it! “The content is not as suspicious and crass as one might initially think. Moreover the book is full of lessons on how to listen to people, understand people’s point of view, how to become more empathetic and less reactive to situations. A great book that teaches patience and builds your resilience as an entrepreneur and business owner.”

For Ian Murphy Founder at CyberOff, the book that influenced him the most was The Cuckoo’s Egg by Clifford Stoll: “It taught me that having a keen eye and following your gut was an all important trait, not only in cyber security but also in life too. The true story of how Cliff spotted an accounting error in the use of the University’s computer system and then tracking this back to an attacker in Eastern Germany that has been using the University system to access NORAD, is as good as any spy thriller. It was also at the very beginning of my career in Security that I read it and it still amazes me today that the common inquisitiveness he showed and the trusting of his inner voice is something that is still missing amongst all these data breaches we hear of in the news. The parallels of this with running my own cyber security business, especially in trying to help others with increasing their cyber savviness with respect to developing that “gut feel” or “spidey sense” is as important now as it was back then (and probably even more so now). It also shows me that whilst we think technology has advanced by several orders of magnitude, we as the consumers of such tech are still fallible and still falling for the same tried and tested techniques. Business for me is not only expertise it is also capitalising on the opportunities that come your way and being able to decipher which of those opportunities to follow. Some will lead to dead ends, others will take you to places you never imagined, but the only I know from my experiences and from the book is that if you stop being inquisitive and asking questions, then you probably will not come across your untapped potential.”

And finally this week as our 50th book we have Now Is Your Chance: A 30-Day Guide to Living Your Happiest Life Using Positive Psychology by Niyc Pidgeon chosen by the Founder and Director of Mel Wakely Marketing, Mel Wakely Mackay herself. “I’ve been a fan of Niyc Pidgeon since I started listening to her brilliant ‘Unstoppable Success’ podcast. I wanted more, so I decided to listen to this book on Audible. Since investing in coaching myself, I’ve dug deep into gratitude as I often feel I’m in a place of scarcity and lack. This is a great book for action-takers. It’s easy to dive in and out as you want, or you can follow it consistently for 30 days. I was more of a dip in and out kinda girl. I find Niyc’s no-nonsense, no BS approach refreshing, and this book is a good way of getting you to think differently about your life, attitudes, feelings, and thoughts and how a few small tweaks can make a big difference in your life and business. Coming out of a pandemic, I think we all need as much positivity as we can get and Niyc has it in spades.”

And that’s it for this week’s installment of 100 Business Books that have influenced 100 Business Owners- enjoy!