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June 18, 2024

12 Inspirational Books for Business Women in 2024

12 Inspirational Books for Business Women in 2024

Choosing just 9 books as the most inspirational books for business women to read in 2022 is much harder than it sounds. There are thousands of books to choose from, so we picked our list based on 4 characteristics. The topic of the book, the credibility of the author, the reviews of the book on Amazon, and the relevance to business women.

How We Choose Our Books?

Most of our team members at Advantage have read each book listed below. I only put books on the list that are recommended by our illustrious team of marketers, writers, publishers, and PR.

  1. Topic of the book– each book needs to add value to business women across the world. From building the right mindset in business to creating a more diverse workforce, our list of 10 books covers everything you’d need to be the best leader you can be. 
  2. Author credibility- If an author isn’t a subject expert, nobody is going to read the book. Instill trust in your customer base and nothing does that more than credibility in your field.
  3. Amazon book reviews– We try not to take someone else’s word for it, but if the reviews are good, the book follows suit. We look for books with at least 4 stars, but prefer 5 star ratings.
  4. Relevance to Women- Simply put, if a book doesn’t apply specifically to women, then we didn’t include it in the review.

Which Books Do We Recommend?

1. #KeepGoing: From 15 Year-Old Mom to Successful CEO & Entrepreneur

Why Read it: Mari Tautimes is one of the brightest examples of perseverance amid adversity. I’ve traveled the world through military service and as an “Army brat” (child of a soldier), and I’ve met people of every creed, nationality, orientation, and socioeconomic status. To this day, I’ve met no one that hasn’t gone through adversity in their lives. 

It would have been easy for Mari to throw in the towel of life and use her teen mom status as a crutch. Instead, she took accountability and grabbed life by the horns. Instead of allowing her circumstance to guide her, she discovered a 7 step process that has catapulted her from novice business woman to CEO of a multi-million dollar company.

Reading #KeepGoing can help you identify what’s most important in your life and how to focus your attention on those things. Even though I can’t relate to her specific experiences as a woman, I learned how to clearly form a plan for my future from her 7 steps. 

2. Times Up

Why Read It: As a man, it’s easy to say, “it’s not my problem” when women and underrepresented ethnic groups don’t get hired for jobs. I work hard for what I have and try to keep my head down, just like the rest of the population. However, books like Time’s Up forces us to open our eyes to the inequalities of corporations. 

There are a lot of books that are clearly created to divide men and women, but Patricia Lenkov uses peer-reviewed statistics to illustrate the point of diversity. The best part about this book is it’s coming from one of the largest hiring firms in the world. 

Patricia Lenkov is the founder and CEO of Agility Executive Search and offers the rare perspective of hiring executives. She thoroughly explains the characteristics she looks for in an executive and why it’s so important for added diversity in the executive pool. 

I learned that by having more diversity in the executive positions for companies, it naturally improves the overall diversity of the corporation. Diversity provides more perspectives and provides a better understanding of the world economy. Nobody knows this better than Patricia Lenkov. 

3. The Demotivated Employee

Why Read It: How many people have worked in a dead-end job that felt like you’re sacrificing your soul to get out of bed in the morning? If you haven’t had that experience, count your blessings because you’re one of the lucky few. In fact, only 53% of workers in 2022 are satisfied with their job, according to a new poll by Virtual Vocations, a job placement agency. 

The Demotivated Employee by Dr. Tara Peters and Dr. Cathy Bush has cracked the code to provide the best possible work environment for your team. One of the most overlooked aspects of business is establishing the correct company culture. Dr. Peters and Dr. Bush explained all the different reasons employees could feel unmotivated and not producing at the desired rate. 

Advantage Media and Forbes Books titles stacked on desk

The thing I learned the most from this book is the importance of communication within a corporation. If you’re a CEO or manager and feel like your company could have higher performance in OKRS and BPRs, The Demotivated Employee is the answer. 

4. Taming The Sabertooth

Why Read It: Stress is part of everyone’s life, regardless of your role, job, or responsibilities. Some of us work for billion dollar corporations and some stay at home to take care of kids. We all have stressors in our lives that often dictate decisions we make, even if they’re not the best decisions. Tracey Grove offers some valuable advice on how to deal with stress and overcome it.

The thing I was most impressed about was how relative her advice is for everyone, not just those in business. She explains what the fight-flight-or freeze response is and how to use it to make better decisions by controlling the surrounding stress.

I was intrigued by Taming The Sabertooth, first because it’s an outstanding book title and cover. Second, I have experience dealing with the fight-flight-freeze response to severe stress in active combat as a former soldier. I couldn’t agree more with how Tracey breaks down our body’s response to fear and how to overcome it. 

5. Just Change

Why Read It: Tynesia Boyea-Robinson is the President and CEO of Reliance Methods and author of Just Change. I was immediately attracted to this book as a former educator (high school history teacher). Tynesia is a proven difference maker in sustainable education, employment, and health opportunities.

The case studies and empirical evidence used in Just Change provide community leaders and investors with opportunities to invest with measurable statistics. Her passion for social change and equality is inspiring to learn about. 

As someone who’s been in disadvantaged communities, I could sense her authenticity and awareness of the issues affecting our urban communities. My favorite part is the tools she explains have been used in hundreds of communities across the country to provide a better life for all. 

6. Discovering Your Dawn

Why Read It: Each book on this list resonates with me, but Discovering Your Dawn is the type of motivation and perspective that I believe we could all use. Discovering Your Dawn is about the life-story of Katherine Miracle and how she overcame catastrophic loss in her life. 

Katherine really resonated with me about her experience with toxic relationships and losing close friends and family. We all have tragedy in our lives and I agree with Katherine that it’s all about how you get back up and react to loss that shapes your character. 

Reading Discovering Your Dawn has shown me alternative methods of dealing with personal and work relationships. I’ve often struggled with relationships in my life and it feels good knowing that I’m not alone. I highly recommend reading this book to gain a unique perspective on how one woman deals with adversity to be a multi-million dollar CEO.

Discovering Your Dawn by Kathrine Miracle

7. The Big Turnaround

Why Read It: The Big Turnaround is a must-read book for success in any corporation. I view myself a lot like the main character in her book, Darcy Holtzman. Darcy is much more successful as a CFO of the largest office supply dealership, called Burgess Industries. 

I love how Darcy noticed something wrong in her company (poor leadership) and took control of her own destiny by leaving the company. I think about all the times I’ve been working for bad bosses and toxic coworkers and wanted nothing more than to get out of my desk and quit. 

The reason I love this book is Ellen’s advice on how to deal with toxicity at the workplace and still overcome the obstacles in your way. After reading The Big Turnaround, I wish I had read this when I was 20 years old. 

Ellen’s able to explain the many contentious topics that have put a strain on the continuity of her business. She offers actionable advice on how to avoid conscientiousness in the workplace. 

8. Stories & Heart  

Why Read It: Sharon Price John is the CEO of Build-A-Bear and one of the newest authors at Forbes Books. In her book, Stories & Heart, Sharon recounts her life story, guiding you through the lessons learned throughout the journey. 

Sharon’s stories, from the time she learned to climb pine trees as a child to the time she became a CEO, are captivating. She ties together each story with a call to critical thinking and one question.  

Each chapter offers a piercing question for you to answer, called “Question From The Heart.” These questions force you to think about your life’s goals, biases, perspectives, and the possibilities of implementing change in your life. 

Sharon discusses how a change in perspective can change your life, but also advice on how to create your own story. Each chapter includes a “Create Your Own Story” section as a stepping stone to launch your ideas. 

Chapter four was my favorite chapter in the book because Sharon shares her story of overcoming imposter syndrome. Many of us struggle with the idea of failure, often telling ourselves that it’s not worth the risk.

Sharon states, “You need to have enough faith to take definitive action toward the goal far before there is any proof whatsoever of its potential achievement.” 

Sharon teaches you that trying to calculate the percentage of success versus failure is counterintuitive. By asking yourself, “What’s the worst that could happen?” By doing this, you’ll cut through the doubt and think logically about the situation. 

9. Get It Together     

Why Read It: Puja Rios is a first-generation American who has become the Chief Revenue Officer of Frame.io. She started learning her knack for entrepreneurship at thirteen from her father. Get It Together: A Winning Formula for Success from the Boss You Need is Puja’s story of how to become the best leader you can be. 

There are hundreds of leadership books, but Puja’s direct, often blunt straight talk sets her apart. How many of you have/had a business leader that only wanted to hear the good news? How many times has a leader asked “how is your family” or tried to connect with you on a personal level? Puja learned that in order to become a successful entrepreneur and business leader, she had to connect with her team. 

One quote that stood out to me was how she runs her weekly meetings with her 140 employees: “I tell my teams what they want to hear, what they need to hear, and what they can’t stand to listen to.” 

Yet she doesn’t stop there; Puja expects her employees to do the same with her. Honesty is integral to Puja’s leadership style, helping cultivate an atmosphere of integrity and open dialogue. Many leaders only want to hear what they want to hear, not what they can’t stand to listen to. Accountability leads to a level of clarity that will empower your workforce to find their passion.

Puja educates leaders on how to gain (or regain) perspective in their lives by finding a safe space to think outside of work. Puja states, “The art of working hard includes giving yourself time and space to think.” Whether it’s taking your kids to the park, or laying on a beach, you must find a space outside of work. 

Puja teaches you how to create manageable goals, identify your why, and how to stay disciplined with micro steps. She uses a strategy she calls “The Five-By-Five Strategy” for lead generation that has helped her create new and recurring revenue streams.  

Puja provides exercises and practical assignments throughout the book to keep you engaged and help you grow as a leader. I found her assignments helpful and even adapted her 4 Pillars of Revenue Growth into my goals in life and business.

10. Lift Off: 12 Things to Know Before Selling Your Business

Why Read It: Sharon B. Heaton is one of the country’s leading Small Business Advocates (SBA), helping empower women entrepreneurs. With over 30 years of Mergers and Acquisition experience as a lawyer, CEO, founder and more, Heaton has a trove of information to share. She does just this in her Forbes Books title, Lift Off: 12 Things to Know Before Selling Your Business.

Heaton’s impressive background adds depth to her straightforward advice, helping readers navigate the ins and outs of selling their business. In Lift Off: 12 Things to Know Before Selling Your Business, Heaton walks you through the entire sales process, providing clarity on common questions. Questions include: How do I get paid?; Is my company sellable?; Who will buy my company?

This read offers in-depth details to help you determine if selling is right for you. You’ll also gain insight into handling the M&A journey and preparing for potential pitfalls. By following her guidelines, you can discover how much your business is worth and how to get the best deal possible.

Her down-to-earth tone and depth of knowledge make an enjoyable read that’s sure to guide you through this notable season.

11. Push Play: Gaming for a Better World

Why Read It: Dr. Songyee Yoon’s recent release, Push Play, offers readers a fresh outlook on a globally male-dominated sector — gaming. With a PHD from MIT, Yoon’s success in STEM is an encouragement to women looking to rise in the STEM field.

Through the read, Dr. Yoon tackles diversity and equity in gaming. She weaves her experiences as a woman in STEM with inspiring stories from the gaming industry. She argues that gaming innovation doesn’t just create fun, it paves the way for a more just world for everyone.

As a business leader, you may not have considered gaming as a method for creating thriving business teams. Dr. Yoon outlines how you can leverage gaming that can support diverse, communicative, and engaged teams that supports a more productive workplace.

12. Valley Girls: Lessons From Female Founders in the Silicon Valley and Beyond

Why Read It: Kelley Steven-Waiss is a cloud software veteran, founder of Hitch Works, and B2B tech advisor who helps CEOs drive growth, known for promoting women in tech.

In a space notorious for negative stereotypes and cultural biases against women, Steven-Waiss shares her journey to beating the odds with her own big idea in her book Valley Girls.

In this inspiring read, Steven-Waiss offers a roadmap for women at every stage of their entrepreneurial or intrapreneurial journey. Enjoy straightforward insights on how to navigate early setbacks, pitch venture capital, manage the post-funding stage, handle stress, and more.

Interested in learning about other members that represent the Best In Business? Check our 9 Books To Inspire Life-Long Learners. ForbesBooks and Advantage Media work with some of the brightest and boldest businessmen and women. If you think you have what it takes to represent the best in business, I encourage you to reach out and take our 5 minute assessment.  

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