Top 10 Entrepreneur Biographies You Should Read

Sarika Anand Sarika Anand
Nov 26, 2022 15 min read
Top 10 Entrepreneur Biographies You Should Read

Books are a wonderful source of inspiration, a condensed collection of years' worth of knowledge, a dependable companion, an escape into fantasy, and a manual for taking action. Books are no exception when it comes to the constant need for entrepreneurs and founders to adapt and learn from all available sources.

This is particularly true with business biographies, which are frequently authored by the most influential and ground-breaking figures in the industry.

Experience is the best teacher for people. Otto von Bismarck once said, "I prefer to learn from the experience of others." Reading the biographies of individuals whom you admire is a great method to do the same.

The top 10 business biographies are listed here, carefully chosen to suit all tastes.

Steve Jobs: The Exclusive Biography
Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future
Alibaba: The House That Jack Ma Built
Shoe Dog: A Memoir by the Creator of Nike
The Everything Store: Jeff Bezos and the Age of Amazon
The Snowball: Warren Buffett and the Business of Life
Sam Walton: Made In America
Onward: How Starbucks Fought for Its Life without Losing Its Soul
That Will Never Work: The Birth of Netflix and the Amazing Life of an Idea
The Ride of a Lifetime: Lessons Learned from 15 Years as CEO of the Walt Disney Company

Steve Jobs: The Exclusive Biography

Author: Walter Isaacson
Goodreads Rating: 4.16

Steve Jobs: The Exclusive Biography - Best Entrepreneur Biographies
Steve Jobs: The Exclusive Biography - Best Entrepreneur Biographies

An entrepreneur's autobiography about one of the most significant founders ever, Steve Jobs, is portrayed beautifully in this biography by Walter Issacson. Over 40 interviews with Steve Jobs, his family, and coworkers served as the basis for this biography. You understand through his journey where he received his ideas from and exactly how he overcame difficulties throughout the years. Walters demonstrates how Jobs transformed several sectors, including music, animated films, smartphones, and tablet computers.

In the twenty-first century, he saw that fusing creativity with technology was the perfect approach to generating value. He established a business that combines incredible technological marvels with imaginative breakthroughs.

Although Jobs worked with the author, he requested no say over what was published. Nothing was off bounds, he said. He urged everyone he knew to be open-minded. He was open and honest about the individuals he collaborated with and faced. The emotions, obsessions, foulness, creativity, perfectionism, and drive for dominance that defined his business style and the inventive goods that came as a result are candidly described by his friends, competitors, and coworkers. His story is both educational and warning, and it contains many valuable lessons about creativity, morality, leadership, and principles.

Buy Steve Jobs: The Exclusive Biography Here

Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future

Author: Ashlee Vance
Goodreads Rating: 4.21

Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future - Best Entrepreneur Biographies
Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future - Best Entrepreneur Biographies

Elon Musk, the businessman and developer behind Tesla, SolarCity, and SpaceX, sold PayPal, one of his online businesses, for $1.5 billion. From his turbulent beginnings in South Africa and escape to the United States to his stunning technical inventions and economic endeavours, Ashlee Vance portrays the complete grandeur and trajectory of the genius's career and life. One of the most important issues of our day is explored by Vance using Musk's story: Can the country of innovators and creators that dominated modern society for a century continue to thrive in the face of intense international competition?

He contends that Henry Ford, Steve Jobs, Thomas Edison, and Howard Hughes, constitute Musk, who he compares to all of them. Musk has devoted more of his time and resources than any other businessman alive today to envision a tomorrow that is as expansive as the innovators of the Great Era of Science-Fiction and Fantasy.

Buy Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future Here

List of All the Books Ever Recommended by Elon Musk
Elon Musk is a successful entrepreneur and founder of Tesla and SpaceX. He has learnt a lot from reading books. So, Here are 70 books recommended by Elon Musk.

Alibaba: The House That Jack Ma Built

Author: Duncan Clark
Goodreads Rating: 3.86

Alibaba: The House That Jack Ma Built - Best Entrepreneur Biographies
Alibaba: The House That Jack Ma Built - Best Entrepreneur Biographies

Duncan Clark, who was given unimaginable access to a wealth of new information and exclusive personal interviews, brings on his first-hand knowledge of key players crucial to Alibaba's rise to craft a credible, persuasive descriptive account of how Alibaba and its charismatic founder have changed the way that Chinese practise their newly found financial stability, encouraging businessmen all over the world and turning the tables on the Silicon Valley giants.

Jack Ma, a man who came from impoverished circumstances and began his career as an English teacher, developed and grew Alibaba into the second-largest Internet firm in the world in just ten years. Β The firm was valued more than Facebook or Coca-Cola after its $25 billion IPO in 2014, which was the highest ever. Hundreds of millions of Chinese consumers rely on Alibaba's eCommerce operations every day, and it also employs and pays millions of individuals.

Duncan covers important issues about the company's history, development, and prospects. How did Jack Ma create Alibaba from such humble beginnings? What accounts for his unwavering motivation and cunning advantage over his rivals? How long can the business expect to hold its position of dominance with over 80% of China's eCommerce market? Are Alibaba's goals constrained, or will the Chinese government take action to restrain them, as the business sets its eyes on the financial and media industries of the nation? And how will Alibaba expand its influence and operations in the US and other international markets as it opens offices in cities like Seattle, San Francisco, and LA?

Clark situates Alibaba's story within the broader narrative of China's economic boomβ€”the growth of corporate companies and the advancement of web usage has propelled the nation to become the second-largest economy in the world and home to the largest Internet population, which is double the size of the US. He also looks at the social and political backdrop to these significant shifts. Clark is a seasoned insider with unmatched contacts who has a profound knowledge of Chinese business philosophy. As never before, he sheds light on an improbable business giant and analyses the crucial role his company played in changing China while also strengthening its position and influence globally.

Buy Alibaba: The House That Jack Ma Built Here

Shoe Dog: A Memoir by the Creator of Nike

Author: Phil Knight
Goodreads Rating: 4.47

Shoe Dog - Best Entrepreneur Biographies
Shoe Dog - Best Entrepreneur Biographies

For the first time, Nike CEO and founder, Phil Knight, tells the inner tale of the firm's beginnings as an adventurous startup and how Nike developed to become one of the most recognisable, game-changing, and lucrative companies in the world in this honest and engaging biography.

After graduating from business school in 1962, Phil Knight loaned $50 from his father and started a company with the straightforward goal of importing high-end, reasonably priced sports shoes from Japan. Knight made $8,000 his first year by selling the shoes out of the backseat of his lime green Plymouth Valiant. Nike now has yearly sales of almost $30 billion. In the startup era, the swoosh (Nike's logo) has developed into a groundbreaking, global icon, being one of the most pervasive and well-known symbols in existence right now.

But Knight, the person responsible for the swoosh, has always been away from the public's eyes. Here, for the very first time, he shares his narrative, starting with his crossroads experience, in a book that is open, honest, brave, and humorous. After travelling the world on a rucksack at the age of 24, he made the unorthodox choice to launch his own company, one that would be lively and distinctive.

Alongside his early successes, Knight describes the numerous risks and intimidating failures that came his way to realise his objective. Above everything else, he remembers the early connections and very first partnerships and workers, a motley crew of outcasts and explorers who grew to be a close-knit family. Collectively, they developed a company that transformed it all by utilising the tremendous force of a common objective and a strong faith in the divinity of sports.

Buy Shoe Dog: A Memoir by the Creator of NIKE Here

The Everything Store: Jeff Bezos and the Age of Amazon

Author: Brad Stone
Goodreads Rating: 4.14

The Everything Store - Best Entrepreneur Biographies
The Everything Store - Best Entrepreneur Biographies

Historically, Amazon.com began by sending books to customers by mail. But Jeff Bezos, the company's imaginative creator, wasn't happy to only sell books. He envisioned Amazon as the one-stop shop with an unrestricted assortment, alluring accessibility, and game-changing cheap costs. To do this, he created a business culture of unyielding determination and confidentiality that has never been broken. Brad Stone with the help of both current and past Amazon workers as well as members of the Bezos family, provides readers with their first, extensive, bystander vision of how everything worked in the journey of Amazon.

Bezos is a private person in contrast to other top pioneers in technology like Jobs, Gates, and Zuckerberg. He distinguishes out, though, for his relentless search for new markets that have seen him steer Amazon into high-risk projects like the Kindle and cloud computing while also revolutionising shopping in the same way Henry Ford did with manufacturing. The Everything Store is a riveting, comprehensive account of the business that made one of the initial and most significant stands on the world wide web and fundamentally altered how we browse and purchase.

Buy The Everything Store Here

The Snowball: Warren Buffett and the Business of Life

Author: Alice Schroeder
Goodreads Rating: 4.13

The Snowball - Best Entrepreneur Biographies
The Snowball - Best Entrepreneur Biographies

The definitive biography of Warren Buffett, amongst the most admired individuals in the world, is available here. The renowned Omaha investor has never published a book, but he gave one writer, Alice Schroeder, an unparalleled opportunity to interview him and others who were most important to him about his career, beliefs, problems, victories, mistakes, and insights. As a consequence, the person known as "The Oracle of Omaha" has a comprehensive and emotionally engaging biography.

Buffett has never revealed his entire life narrative, even though the mainstream media follows him regularly. Warren Buffett is full of contradictions. He set out to demonstrate that a good person can come in first. He promoted honesty as an investor, CEO, board member, writer, and speaker over the years, treating his investors as partners and serving as their stewards. From the humble Omaha headquarters of his firm Berkshire Hathaway, he simultaneously rose to the position of the richest man in the world. Nothing about this is "basic".

When Alice Schroeder first met Warren Buffett, she was a skilled writer with a good eye for detail and financial acumen. She also worked as an analyst for the financial industry. He was impressed by her financial articles, and as she got to know him, she discovered that while much had been published about his investment approach, no one had gone further to examine his bigger ideology, which is intertwined with a complicated persona and the specifics of his experience. This led to his deciding to work with her on the autobiography he wouldn't ever pen down.

Buffett, before this publication, never spent endless hours conversing with a writer, answering questions, allowing them to complete visibility to his family, children, friends, acquaintances, and business partners, unlocking his archives, and remembering his early years. It was a brave thing to do, as The Snowball makes very evident. Being a mortal, his journey has had both pluses and minuses, as most journeys do. Buffett's principles and beliefs that have improved people's lives will be remembered instead of his position on the wealth scoreboard, even though his fortune is still remarkable. This story depicts why Warren Buffett is today's most remarkable example of American business success.

Buy The Snowball Here

Top 15 Books Recommended by Warren Buffett
Warren Buffett’s love of reading has profoundly shaped him as a human since he was a small kid. Find out the best books recommended by Warren Buffett here.

Sam Walton: Made In America

Author: Sam Walton, John Huey (Contributor)
Goodreads Rating: 4.11

Sam Walton: Made in America - Best Entrepreneur Biographies
Sam Walton: Made in America - Best Entrepreneur Biographies

Here is a remarkable success tale of a man whose empire was established by hard work rather than deception.

In Sam Walton's own words, this is "a tale of risk-taking, work and effort, and business; of understanding where you wish to go and getting prepared to do whatever it requires to achieve that goal. It's also a tale about adhering to your principles and trusting in your ideas even when others might not."

It tells the tale of how Sam Walton transformed Walmart, the biggest retailer in the world, from a single discount store in a struggling textile town. He never lacked the common touch while reigning as the unquestioned merchant monarch of the late 20th century. Here, Walton shares his remarkable tale in his unique terms. Genuinely modest yet always confident in his goals and successes, Walton expresses his ideas in a straightforward, plain manner.

Buy Sam Walton: Made In America Here

Onward: How Starbucks Fought for Its Life without Losing Its Soul

Author: Howard Schultz, Joanne Gordon
Goodreads Rating: 3.85

Onward - Best Entrepreneur Biographies
Onward - Best Entrepreneur Biographies

Starbucks' president and chairman, Howard Schultz (now interim CEO), decided to resume his role as CEO in 2008, 8 years after he had backed away from the regular management of the business and taken on the role of chairman. Schultz was committed to assisting Starbucks in getting back on track, reestablishing its essential principles, and regaining its economic health since he believed the company had wandered off course.

In Onward, he and fellow writer, Joanne Gordon, tells the incredible story of Howard's comeback and the company's sustainable change under his management, demonstrating how Starbucks once more successfully achieved sustainability and profitability without losing compassion amid one of the most turbulent economic periods in history.

The book zooms in to reveal, in engrossing detail, how one firm battled and remade itself in the midst of everything. providing readers with a glimpse of a period of history that left no organisation unaffected. The fast-moving story gives readers an insight into Schultz's mind as he learns to accept his limits and his changing management style while being pushed by the pressure that arises on a daily basis as disputes. The fascinating, honest tale Onward charts the development of both a business and a businessman.

Schultz's core leadership principle, Onward, is that success is not just about winning, but also about winning the right way. In the end, he gives readers what he works so hard to convey every day: a sense of optimism that, no matter how difficult things become, the future may still be just as successful as the past, or perhaps more successful, depending on how success is defined.

Buy Onward Here

That Will Never Work: The Birth of Netflix and the Amazing Life of an Idea

Author: Marc Randolph
Goodreads Rating: 4.21

That Will Never Work - Best Entrepreneur BiographiesΒ 
That Will Never Work - Best Entrepreneur Biographies

The amazing unseen tale of how Netflix evolved from a vision to a business is recounted in the style of Phil Knight's Shoe Dog, and it is all narrated by co-founder and former CEO, Marc Randolph.

Brick-and-mortar video storefronts previously reigned supreme. Late fines were commonplace, video streaming was unknown, and the mass acceptance of DVDs appeared to be about as far off as flying automobiles. In fact, when Marc Randolph had an idea in 1997, these were the generally recognised rules of the nation. It was a straightforward ideaβ€”using the internet to rent moviesβ€”but it was one of several, much worse recommendations that Randolph would make to Reed Hastings on their daily journey to work, including those for customised baseball bats and a shampoo delivery company.

But Hastings was fascinated, so the two created a business, with Hastings serving as the main financier and Randolph as the CEO. Netflix's success now that it has more than 150 million users seems predestined, yet the most revolutionary start-up of the twenty-first century started with very few supporters and disaster at every step. Marc Randolph's impactful journey illustrates how anyone who possesses toughness, sound intuitions, and persistence can transform the world, even with a suggestion that many folks assume will never function. From having to persuade his own mom to become an investor to the guest house conference hall that functioned as the initial office, to server crashes on launch day, to the now-legendary meeting when Netflix proposed Blockbuster Inc. to acquire them.

But more than simply the insider account of one of the most recognisable corporations in the world is revealed. It offers solutions to a number of our most essential inquiries about taking chances in the company or in life. It is chock-full of counterintuitive topics and written in writing that makes you want to binge. Where do you start? How do you handle failures and dissatisfaction? What is your approach to success? What is success, exactly?

That Will Never Work is not just the quintessential follow-your-dreams tale but also one of the greatest illuminating business tales of modern times, covering topics like idea development, team building, and understanding when to let go.

Buy That Will Never Work Here

The Ride of a Lifetime: Lessons Learned from 15 Years as CEO of the Walt Disney Company

Author: Robert Iger
Goodreads Rating: 4.42

The Ride of a Lifetime - Best Entrepreneur BiographiesΒ 
The Ride of a Lifetime - Best Entrepreneur Biographies

In this book, the former CEO of The Walt Disney Company, Robert Iger, discusses the principles and concepts that have helped him redevelop one of the most adored companies around the world and motivate those who work there, with the help of fellow writer Joel Lovell.

Amid a challenging period, Robert Iger was appointed CEO of The Walt Disney Company in 2005. The company's morale had declined, the market was more fierce, and technologies were evolving more quickly than they ever had.
Iger says, "I realised there was nothing to be achieved from fighting over the old days." "The future was all that mattered, and I thought I knew exactly where Disney needed to go," he said.

Three concepts stood up clearly:

  • Produce the best content Disney is capable of.
  • Instead of resisting innovation, welcome it and employ it
  • Think larger, think globally, and strengthen the brand recognition of Disney in other countries.

Twelve years later, Disney is the biggest and most reputable media business in the world, with 21st Century Fox, Pixar, Marvel, and Lucasfilm among its brands. Iger is regarded as one of the most creative and successful CEOs of his time, and the company is now worth about five times what it was when he joined it.

Buy The Ride of a Lifetime Here

Conclusion

Many entrepreneurs believe that reading and understanding the stories of the people they look up to has helped them in their journey to success. The above list includes some of the best business biographies of top entrepreneurs, which are sure to help you learn different mantras for your success.

FAQs

What are business biographies?

Business biographies refer to the portrayal of the stories of entrepreneurs as well as the formation and growth of powerful corporations.

Which are the best business biographies to read?

The best business biographies of top entrepreneurs are:

  • Steve Jobs: The Exclusive Biography
  • Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future
  • Alibaba: The House That Jack Ma Built
  • The Everything Store: Jeff Bezos and the Age of Amazon
  • The Snowball: Warren Buffett and the Business of Life

Is there a biography of Elon Musk?

Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future by Ashlee Vance is a popular biography of Elon Musk, published in 2015. Power Play: Tesla, Elon Musk, and the Bet of the Century by Tim Higgins is another biography of Elon Musk.

Must have tools for startups - Recommended by StartupTalky

Great! Next, complete checkout for full access to StartupTalky.
Welcome back! You've successfully signed in.
You've successfully subscribed to StartupTalky.
Success! Your account is fully activated, you now have access to all content.
Success! Your billing info has been updated.
Your billing was not updated.