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What’s The Best Thing Santa Could Bring You?

As business owners one of the best things we can do is invest in ourselves.

What do I mean, invest in yourself?

As a business owner, arguably the most important asset in your business is YOU! It is therefore crucial that you invest both time and money on yourself and your own development as both a leader and a business owner.

That means keeping informed, learning new skills, developing existing ones, honing leadership skills, learning strategy.

For those business owners who place an importance on developing themselves, they gain a competitive advantage over those who don’t.

So how to invest in yourself and develop your skills as a business owner?

There are of course many ways. A whole range of conferences, training courses, business exhibitions and shows, podcasts and business magazines exist to help you learn new skills around leadership, marketing, sales, strategic thinking, personal development and so on.

Reading books is another way.

Invest in yourself by reading great business books. These days that can of course be electronically, but I have to say I still love the feel and smell of a good old-fashioned book!

So, this Christmas why not invest in your business skills and add a book or two to your Christmas wish list.

And if Santa doesn’t leave you one under the Christmas Tree, go out and buy it yourself!!

Of the books I’ve read this past year, here’s four I highly recommend.

  1. Think Simple by Ken Segall

Ken Segall worked alongside Steve Jobs at both NeXT and Apple for twelve years. During that time, he saw first-hand how Steve Job’s obsession with simplicity was the key to Apple’s success.

But it is not just Apple, in the book Ken Segall also examines other companies and leaders from a wide range of business sectors and industries, and chronicles how in an increasingly complicated world, simplicity and keeping it simple in your business can set you apart from your competitors.

  1. Strategy and the Fat Smoker by David Maister

David Maister is a leading business consultant who prior to launching his own consultancy firm served on the faculty of Harvard Business School.

In our business life (and in our personal life) we often know what we should be doing. We also know why we should be doing it. And we usually know how to do it.

The hard bit is actually doing it. Doing what is obvious and good for your business. The problem however, is we often get side-tracked by short termism. We sacrifice the important for the urgent.

This book shows that just because something is obvious that doesn’t make it easy, and that real strategy lies in devising ways to ensure that compared to others, we actually do more of what we know we should be doing!

  1. The E-Myth Revisited by Michael Gerber

This is a classic book. I’ve read and re-read it several times and always get something new every time I read it.

Michael Gerber states that the E-Myth or entrepreneurial myth is that most people who start small businesses are by definition entrepreneurs.

And he then goes on to state that there is a fatal assumption, which is that just because an individual understands the technical work of a business, that the individual can successfully run a business that does that technical work.

Or to put it another way, let’s say for example, you are a graphic designer and you start a graphic design business. Just because you are a great graphic designer, does not necessarily mean that you will run a great graphic design business.

Gerber explores the reasons why, provides solutions and explains the vital distinction between working ON your business and working IN your business.

  1. Winners and How They Succeed by Alastair Campbell

How do sports stars succeed? How do entrepreneurs thrive and prosper? Were they born winners or is it something we like they can all develop?

Alastair Campbell talks to many successful people – politicians, sportsmen and women, top managers, entrepreneurs to discover what it takes to be a winner.

How do they tick? What do they do differently? What mindset do they have? Campbell examines and considers these and many other questions and as a result sets out a blueprint for winning that we can all follow, be it in business or indeed any walk of life.

Books are a great way of investing in yourself and any of these four books will provide great ideas and strategies you can go off and apply in your business.

So remember, all you have to do is add the book you want to your Christmas wish list and then ask Santa!

In the meantime, we at Funding Track wish you a very Happy and Peaceful Christmas and a prosperous New Year.