Helpful Business Resources {Books, Podcasts, & Links}

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While my degree in Exercise Science certainly helped me establish myself as a fitness pro, it lacked in business info that would help me as a self-employed fitness pro. In college, classes like marketing, management and public speaking were on my agenda to take, but I’ll be honest, I took these intro classes as night classes so I’d only have to go once a week (15 times per semester). And since you could technically miss 2 classes, I only really had to attend 13 of them – college logic that’s been biting me in the ass ever since.  Over the years of seeking out business content on my own, my colleagues have suggested many helpful resources to check out. While these don’t in any way take the place of an actual business degree or course, here are some of the books, podcasts, and TED talks that have helped me along the way: 

Books

BusinessBooks

{Playing Big} by Tara Mohr

My friend and colleague, Kara Mohr recommended I read this. I wrote about it here too. I got SO much out of this book. Like Lean In, it was great to see the research behind what keeps people (mainly women) from playing bigger in their professional lives. What I liked so much about this book was it was concise; straight to the point. In each chapter she outlines a problem, a cause, and what you can do about it. There are specific questions to ask yourself as well as actions you should take to overcome your own obstacles. It’s only 10 chapters and there’s absolutely no filler. Get it here.

{David & Goliath} by Malcolm Gladwell

While this book doesn’t really give you much to think about in terms of business, it outlines what several successful people accomplished, despite their underdog status. Any Malcolm Gladwell book is interesting but this one made me think. A lot. If you’re up against competition that’s got a much larger upper hand, how do you come out on top? Get it here.

{The E Myth: Revisited: Why Most Small Businesses Don’t Work & What to Do About It} by Michael E. Gerber

Elizabeth Ivie posted about listening to this e-book while slaving away at her own business. While this book was certainly repetitive (it could have been a lot shorter – it got to where I was skimming a lot), I did get a lot of great ideas on how to shift my mindset when it comes to business. I read this book after I sold my business earlier this year, and while I was reading it, I realized I’d committed almost every entrepreneur faux pas there was. Not necessarily on doing business itself, but on being an entrepreneur that’s created such an outstanding business model that the business runs itself, without the owner needing to be present 24/7. If you’re feeling more pressure than freedom because you own a business, you should read this. Get it here.

{Presentation Zen: Simple Ideas on Presentation Design & Delivery} by Garr Reynolds

If you deliver presentations at all and your slides are just pages and pages of listed bullet points, your presentations are the ones that bore me (and most likely your audience) to tears. My man-friend does outstanding presentations and he always touts, “You cannot read bullet points and listen to a speaker at the same time.” This book was one he recommended at a conference years ago and I bought it right after. It’s helped me make my own presentations a little more creative and engaging, in order to land my points easily. Get it here.

{Confessions of a Public Speaker} by Scott Berken

This book was as entertaining as it was informative. I believe I read this book on a long flight to Europe a couple years ago and was nearly finished with it when I arrived. It’s got hilariously embarrassing stories of the author’s (and other presenters) mishaps over the years, tips on how to work a tough room or how to get the audience involved, and simple tricks of the trade to make yourself confident and talks flawless. I kind of want to read it again… Get it here.

Podcasts

Podcast

{StartUp} by Alex Blumberg

My best friend just told me about this one a few days ago and I’m already 14 episodes in. Alex Blumberg started a company and recorded all the steps along the way. ALL of them. You listen to his talks with his wife. You hear him attempt (and fail) pitching his ideas to investors. You are with him as he attempts to find a business partner and as they brainstorm new names, because nobody likes the original one. It’s raw and fascinating… a bunch of stuff I’ve never even thought about. I’m only on Season 1, but it’s interesting to hear about what goes on behind the scenes. He also humanizes the entire process by explaining his thoughts and feelings along the way. Looking to launch your big idea? Listen to this podcast first to avoid some of the same pitfalls. Get it here.

{The Broad Experience} by Ashley Nilne-Tyte

This podcast is geared mostly toward females but has a plethora of great guests that come on the show each episode to talk about women and success in the workplace. From how to negotiate a high salary to how to off-set catty co-workers and balance family life, this podcast dives in deep to root of big career issues and how to overcome to achieve success. Get it here.

{Havard Business Review IdeaCast} by HBR

I don’t listen to a ton of these, but I like to pick and choose which talks might help me out various times. Episodes like “Become a Better Listener,” Building Healthy Teams,” and “Why Leadership Feels Awkward” are things I’m interested in listening to while I’m walking my dog. It’s always the small things that can be improved upon so your career makes strides each day. Get it here.

TED Talks

{Start With Why} by Simon Sinek

{Your Body Language Shapes Who You Are} by Amy Cuddy

{Success, Failure, and the Drive to Keep Creating} by Elizabeth Gilbert

There are millions of resources available!
I’d love to hear any you found helpful!
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