Books · Creative Direction

can anyone recommend books to read on ideas to setting up a startup ?

Janvier Wete I'm a London based filmmaker and very ambitious

April 24th, 2017

Looking for good books to read on how to go from an idea to setting up a start up (digital startup), also books that taps on the philosophical reasons why successful startups has worked


merci x

Vlad Khomutov Founder @ Fast Venture, Founder @ Propel Digital, Co-Founder @Webreel, Co-founder @Fitland

April 24th, 2017

Hi Janvier,


A book is not going to help you find an idea more than watching fitness videos on Youtube is going to help you get ripped.


I've been launching startups for 20 years and if I could go back in time and give advice to my younger self, it would be this:

  • Focus on what you're good at, instead of looking for "one big idea" - it's a lot easier to build a business around what you're good at, than brainstorm your way into it. If you look at Olympic athletes - many of them are teenagers or in early 20's, already at the top of the world, because they were focusing on getting better at their sport from early age. Business and fitness are based on the same principles.
  • Build a consulting business around your area of expertise. This will help you create cash flow and will get you to practice your craft with many people on many projects. Practice makes perfect.
  • When you have a solid cash flow business, you can scale up, automate, or productize - in other words, free up your time, while still making money. At that point, you can focus on creating other businesses that solve more critical problems. You won't be under any financial pressure, which frees up your mind to make decisions based on what brings more value, instead of what brings short term gains so you can pay rent.

Philosophically, an entrepreneur is someone who sees a problem and takes an action to solve it. You have to be motivated by helping others. This creates massive value = massive revenue.


Every business needs to deal with people (customers, investors, employees), time, and money. If you want to be good at business, any business, read books about:

  1. Understanding people. Psychology, history, dating, communication, sales - anything that tells stories about how people deal with each other. As a leader, you need to have incredible understanding of your customers and have the right skills to lead others. Your employees and your company culture is a mirror of who you are.
  2. Managing time, prioritizing, delegating - anything that helps you learn how to make meaningful decisions regarding the best use of time.
  3. Managing money.

Hope this helps and good luck on your journey!

Jon DeMersseman My tools help professionals manage their careers.

April 24th, 2017

I recommend the following:


The Lean Startup by Eric Reis

The Creator's Code by Amy Wilkinson

The Advantage by Patrick Lencioni (Not startup specific, but valuable)

Zero to One by Peter Thiel

The Hard Thing about Hard Things by Ben Horowitz

Hooked by Nir Eyal


sarma bkp Over 17 years of IT-Technology experience

April 24th, 2017

Please read the book called Lean Startup by Eric Ries. Must read book for all entrepreneurs.

Akinwale Oluwakemi Blessing Cofounder and CEO of Blizz Mobile Hub(Electronic and Communication Engineers)

June 25th, 2017

I recommend zero to one

By PETER thiel

Dane Madsen Organizational and Operational Strategy Consultant

August 26th, 2018

If you want philosophy about any company, read "Start With Why" - Simon Sinek. You can get a taste for it with his TED video. As Vlad states, no book will help you to the functional or process steps of embarking on this field. Ergo, like any great athlete, it is the love of the game you must embrace. If your reason to be in this is to be rich, stop now and go back. Your tag line says you are ambitious; ambition only gets you so far. Passion for building things is critical. You should also read "Smash Your Brand" by Martin Lindstrom. Branding is not about logos. Branding is about every part of the DNA of the company you build and how it will reflect your leadership.

Rifat Kazi Finance professional with a Passion for Fitness

Last updated on April 24th, 2017

The Lean Startup by Eric Ries- is for your 1st question

Good to Great and Great by choice by Jim Collins for your 2nd. Jim Collins book focuses on how famous business have been able to constantly survive challenging environment and prevail.

Barath Surendran Cofounder & CEO @Techemate - techemate.com

June 25th, 2017

Smartups: Lessons from Rob Ryan's Entrepreneur America Boot Camp for Start-Ups - by

Rob Ryan

Safwan Khan Founder of Startupily | App & Website Dev | Write for Influencive ,Besomebody, Thrive Global

August 25th, 2018

think and grow rich

the lean startup

zero to one

the $100 startup

Chris Dages Knowledgeable in every element of business. Best suited as CFO/COO for start-ups.

August 25th, 2018

yup, start with "The Soul of Money", it's not so much about "start-ups" as it is about money and the control it has over people and how to better align it with your core values. It'll help ensure what you do choose to pursue is more in line with your values to create long-standing success rather than a short-term attempt at a money grab. Of course there are many others, I'd start here though, to get your mind right.

Glyn Caddell I want to teach math and test prep to the world

April 24th, 2017

Not a book, but Y-combinator is posting lectures on YouTube. definitely worth watching.