Freelancing can be hard, you may know: you are your own boss, and this is great, but this means you have to spend time building your portfolio, finding clients, delivering a service, setting up and reviewing your prices, keeping up with your taxes, and so on. All without forgetting your personal life! How to make sure you don’t get buried by your daily job and never progress and learn?
A good help comes from reading and staying updated with news about your industry., and enroll in courses to improve our skills. Another big help comes from books: reading business books is crucial for every freelancer, it gives you a different perspective on things, it helps you improve your skills. The main problem is that if you look on Amazon under “business books” or “freelancing books“, you get thousands and thousands of results: if you wanted to pick the best ones for your freelancing business, you may need weeks. And you don’t have that time!
So how do you make up your mind about what to read? You need a list of the best business books for freelancers! Bear in mind: you don’t need a gigantic list, because the longest and biggest is the list the hardest it becomes to pick one or two books.
That’s why I’ve rounded up the best of the best 10 business books we recommend for freelancers: some are more practical, others more narrative. All of them can help you put things in perspective, find a new perspective, or simply give you that extra push you need.
Table of Contents
Best Business Books for Every Freelancer Out There
All the books we recommend here, are available on Amazon, and you can also choose the Kindle edition.
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1. It Doesn’t Have to Be Crazy at Work – Jason Fried & David Heinemeier Hansson
We can confidently say that this book is one of the best ever and it’s truly a manifesto for freelancers, contractors, solopreneurs of every type. Long hours, an excessive workload, and a lack of sleep have become a badge of honor for modern professionals: the answer to better productivity isn’t more hours—it’s less waste and fewer things that induce distraction and persistent stress. It Doesn’t Have to Be Crazy at Work doesn’t tell you what to do, but shows what the authors have done and how they’ve started to implement changes that have deeply affected their professional and personal life.
2. The Freelancer’s Bible – Sarah Horowitz
Sara Horowitz is the founder of the National Freelancers Union and in this book, she gives useful advice to those new to freelancing but also to those who’ve been freelancing for a while grow and want to expand. If you’re a seasoned freelancer, you may find this book a bit “basic” but we think that also the basics must be reviewed from time to time, and seeing them with a different eye is always good and stimulating.
3. Stop Thinking like a Freelancer – Liam Veitch
Liam Veitch is a veteran when it comes to freelancing and in this book he wants not to only to address the most common problems freelancers encounter but also how to solve them. And, possible, how to avoid them. We recommend you use Liam’s book as a guide to build your own path: it’s the right mix of inspiring and educative content, so it really is suitable for multiple purposes.
4. My So-Called Freelance Life – Michelle Goodman
Michelle Goodman addresses the concerns of women exploring the freelance world but in reality, it is a useful, well written, and pleasant resource for every freelancer out there. From the most complex and common problems such as filing taxes and finding clients, to the most daily problems such as managing your working stuff and your personal life at the same time, this book is truly enjoyable. And it also comes with a plus: it’s not boring and it’s entertaining!
5. The $100 Startup: Reinvent the Way You Make a Living – Chris Guillebeau
Not all the business ideas have a future, but some of them have one, for sure. The goal of Chris Guillebeau and his The $100 Startup is to show everyone how feasible it is to bring an idea to life and make sure it works and generates an income. The book examines 1,500 businesses that started at $100 and grossed $50,000 and also focuses on the 50 most intriguing case studies. An inspirational book, for freelancers interested in passive income, but also stories.
6. The 4-Hour Workweek – Timothy Ferriss
Tim is an established name in the freelancing business, and this book is ideal for freelancers interested in learning how to use their time at the best, how to earn more, how to do what they want without having to work 80 hours a week. One of the most interesting tips is on how to eliminate 50% of your work in 48 hours using a simple economic model. Full of tricks and tips, The 4-Hour Workweek is both inspirational and practical.
7. The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People – Stephen R. Covey
The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People has been around for 25 years and still today it is one of the most inspirational books a freelancer, contractor, or solopreneur must-read. Covey gives advice on how to put in place a process to transform your life and make sure it becomes more efficient and less stressful: the seven habits require a certain mindset but implementing them in a freelancing business can result in a phenomenal growth, both personally and professionally.
8. Start with Why – Simon Sinek
Why are some people and organizations more innovative, more influential, and more profitable than others? That’s the biggest question of this book, that wants to give people the basics to create a perfect business, no matter how big it is. The goal for every business owner and freelancer is to find a reason to create a business and to become successful. This book doesn’t push everyone to create their Worldwide famous business or brand, but it push every freelancer out there to find their “why” to make sure to succeed.
9. The One Thing – Gary Keller
We all know how hard is juggling between things to do, how to find a balance, and how to be productive. In The One Thing, Gary Keller shows how easy it is to focus our energy on one thing at a time to build a better life. Each of us as “one thing” to focus on but for all of us the most important thing is to have fewer distractions and be more productive: this is the book you need to read if you want to give a better structure to your mind but also to your workflow to improve the quality of your life.
10. Company of One – Paul Jarvis
We are all sold to the idea of massive business growth to be happy, but what if this is completely wrong? Paul Jarvis focuses on why staying small is the best thing to do from a business perspective, to pursue more meaningful pleasures in life, and to avoid the headaches that result from dealing with other people. This book is not specifically addressed to freelancers but it’s a great reading and it helps to put your view in perspective, to understand what you really want and what your focus should be.
Are business books useful for freelancers?
The question “are business books useful for freelancers?” may have been popped into your mind while reading the article. So, what’s the answer? Spending time reading is never a waste of time, but we’re not all used to doing it, especially today. The question is not if business books are useful for freelancers but what are the best books a freelancer should read to generate more business also becomes better at work.
One of the things about freelancing is that you need to educate yourself to make progress continuously. And finding books that can help you learning and improving is crucial; that’s why I think that reading business books can be extremely powerful in shaping your next moves as a freelancer.
Reading a book can also become the best way to relax and empower yourself after a long way at work, so why don’t you give it a try?
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