As a business leader, we’d like to suggest a new way to improve your business – open a book. Reading is one of the quickest, simplest, and most inexpensive ways a business owner can scale up.
“Today a reader, tomorrow a leader,”
~ Margaret Fuller.
How can reading books change your business?
Reading stops you becoming a dinosaur.
The world may continue to spin at a thousand miles per hour, but the business world is moving faster than ever. There are new trends, new approaches, new markets. One way to keep up to speed is to read. There are new books out all the time, looking at the latest developments in the business world and giving new perspectives on how we work. By reading these you’ll be party to fresh, relevant ideas and views that will stop both you and your business from becoming stale.
A book is a mind-expanding subject.
By reading you’re topping yourself up with a wealth of useful information. This not only gives you an advantage over your competition, it allows you to speak with authority and confidence to your colleagues and your customers on the latest topics. It goes further than that. Readers have been proven to be better decision-makers than non-readers. Is it any wonder that so many successful business owners are also readers. Bill Gates makes a point of reading at least 50 books a year. And he did okay for himself.
You learn from others’ mistakes.
An error in business can be very costly indeed. Instead of making that mistake, why not read about how other business owners have dealt with adversity, so you can avoid the banana skin they slipped up on. There are many great warts-and-all biographies from successful business owners who talk about the good and the bad decisions they made. For the cost of their book, you not only tap into their genius, you’re arming yourself with the tools to help scale your business.
You can improve your interaction with colleagues.
A book helps you consider the viewpoints of others. You may not agree with what they say, but it will help you to be more open-minded to different approaches and new ideas. This can only help you deal with colleagues at work. Research has shown that reading fiction can improve your level of empathy. If you’re stuck in the “it’s my way or the highway” mentality, reading can open up a more conciliatory way of working.
Book yourself a brain boost.
It helps memory loss.
We all lose grey matter as we get older. The brain weighs about three pounds, but after the age of 20, we lose about one gram of brain mass every year. Wouldn’t it be good to hold on to it for a bit longer? Reading has been proven to slow down memory loss. It’s a case of use it or lose it. And if you’ve got a business to run you need all the brainpower you can get.
It boosts your creativity.
Fresh ideas are the life-blood of any business. But are you likely to have these eureka moments if you spend all day stuck in endless meetings, or with your head buried in a laptop? Opening a book opens up your mind to a world of new possibilities. Books are jump-leads for your brain, a cost-effective way to find that creativity your business needs.
It feeds your curiosity.
Readers, by nature, are curious. They will seek out new writers and different views on life. The know-it-all, on the other hand, will soon find out that they don’t know it all and come crashing down. Being curious is vital to being successful. The business leader who’s is curious is always on the look-out for new and better ways of working. Sooner or later, they’ll find them. Nothing feeds curiosity like a book.
It helps your mental health.
As a business owner, it’s vital that you find time to de-stress. Losing yourself in a book is the perfect antidote to the fire-fighting, non-stop hamster wheel of daily business life. Research by Dr David Lewis revealed that reading for as little as six minutes per day can reduce stress levels by 60%, by lowering your heart rate, easing muscle tension and changing your state of mind.
You clearly must like reading, having gotten this far into the blog, and with summer here, what better time to pack away a few juicy business titles and secure yourself a lounger in the shade.
Our holiday reading recommendations.
Here is a selection of books worth getting your nose into. They all look at business life from a different perspective, but each one will hopefully open your mind and help you scale your business. And that’s not a bad way to spend a few hours.
The Power of Moments by Chip Heath and Dan Heath
How to create powerful, memorable moments that will generate lasting memories and emotions. How you can create them in your business and personal life.
The Tao of Warren Buffett by Mary Buffett and David Clark
A book with countless insights and Buffett’s smartest funniest and most memorable sayings. Easy to remember and dip in and out of.
Rise of the Robots by Martin Ford
Technology is changing our world, industries of the future, our labour pools and employment opportunities at a faster and faster pace. Can you keep up with the change?
Strategy on a Page by Deri Llewellyn-Davies
We saved the best till last. Amazon best seller and quoted as the best book on strategy, written by BGIs fearless adventurer and founder Deri Llewellyn-Davies.
And if you think Jeff Bezos has got quite enough money, you can always visit your local bookshop.