Inspiration and the good-old-fashioned ‘Quest for Knowledge’ are crucial at many points within one’s entrepreneurial journey.
Most need it in spurts; some need a constant flow…but everyone needs it at some point. To quench that proverbial thirst for everything, today’s entrepreneur is spoiled for choice like never before.
Gone are the days (so they say) of reading hard copies and manually correlating information. If you were truly keen to find out about anything, you had to find the information somewhere. The mission was on, be it via encyclopaedias (pre-Wikipedia), printed trade journals, or professorial discourses peppered with lessons from upbringing and general living; Correlation was King. It still is vital– but Google, Search, and online retail giants have absolutely changed the means by which anything can be a catalyst to that lightbulb moment. Of course with information virtually at our fingertips comes the challenge of deciphering and rummaging through tonnes of data (and heaps of rubbish). It’s a double-edged sword on the information highway with entrepreneurs today. With this project, we’re looking at inspiration coming from a book that has inspired an Entrepreneur; The perfect catalyst blend for a young entrepreneur, a seasoned startup…or even a serial entrepreneur.
I had to be part of this project.
I helped launch #CuratedBookshelf because Inspiration is infectious.
There are tonnes of books that promise inspiration and are ‘highly recommended’ by various websites. But who has the time to look through Amazon’s Top 100 Hot New Releases or Top 100 Most Wished For? And that’s just when searching for ‘Marketing Bestsellers’.
I love Amazon as much as the next person, but just search for ‘Small Business and Entrepreneurship’. It will generate more than 5,000 titles. How do you find that gem of a book that holds the key to your next creative spark? Relying on algorithms and ‘what’s popular’ may not always be the best, so we created “A Curated Bookshelf”.
To the entrepreneur about to take that proverbial leap into being a startup, I am ecstatic for you…you may not fully grasp just yet how good you have it. Just a decade or so ago, mentors and business schools looked at startups as small enterprises, rather than as entirely different entities than large corporations, as they are today. Entrepreneurship and startups are the subject of much academic research, professional discourse and stories.
Tonnes of it. Here’s a little bit about mine:
The #CuratedBookshelf idea came to me because I can’t bear to read a Kindle (I just love the drama of books too much).
I made a rather natural transition from working as an MTV show Segment Producer into various entrepreneurial pursuits once upon a time. The long hours in between concept storyboard and getting the Video Editor to render certain effect sequences meant, well, a lot of time waiting. And Waiting Time often meant it was time to read books while trying not to die of utter impatience. I soaked up business books. Inspiration came from every type of book, from “The Alchemist” to “Seven Habits of Highly Effective People“; and Marketing was succinctly represented by “Positioning” and “The Big Idea.”
In those days I could walk into a Barnes & Noble and get stacks of fantastic books in one visit. Back then it was easy to decipher which bestseller book would help you through your particular educational journey. Today not so much. Have you seen some of the largest Barnes & Noble book sellers recently, or the Waterstones in Mayfair London? I seriously get lost in them. Literally. I was part of startups in New Zealand and Manila, and happily herald the flags of ones in Britain. Books are made for sharing, this I know. And who better to ask than those whose businesses rock?
For our #CuratedBookshelf project, I asked some of the most remarkable entrepreneurs
I’ve met recently:
What book moved you enough to recommend it to anyone at the entrepreneurial ‘Tipping Point’ …or someone well entrenched within their startup journey. I’m big on spreading this not-so-random act of kindness, so please join the conversation by recommending a book in LinkedIn, Facebook or in Twitter – simply include #CuratedBookshelf in your post.
Here are some of the early tweets, I’ll try to update them over the next few days…
— Transmit Start-Ups (@TransmitStartUp) September 15, 2013
— EntrepreneurshipLife (@StartUp_Life) September 3, 2013
#curatedbookshelf Think fast and slow – Daniel Kahneman. When planning, launching & executing projects make sure you engage System 2 brain!
— Yiuwin Tsang (@yiuie) July 11, 2013
— Rob Shaw (@robshaw99) July 8, 2013
#curatedbookshelf – “Positioning” by Jack Trout and Al Ries is always a classic
— Sara Caitlin (@projectmindbend) July 4, 2013
— Nuno Dhiren (@ndhiren) July 8, 2013
@KMarketingNinja I would share Clive Woodward ‘Winning’ totally inspiring and well worth a read. Have been fortunate to hear him speak too!
— Deborah Gemmell (@DebsGemmell) July 5, 2013