20 Best Business Books for Accountants and Bookkeepers

We talk a lot about closing the books. What about opening them?

We asked Receipt Bank partners to share the books that have shaped their approach to business. What do you think should be on every accountant’s book-shelf?

1. Stuffocation: Living More with Less, James Wallman

The book explains how we end up with too much clutter in life and how a different approach of working smarter and valuing experiences more in life rather than owning things improves our happiness and productivity. It encourages entrepreneurship and working to suit an experimentalist way of life.

2. The Subtle Art of Not Giving A F*ck, Mark Manson

Helps keep you calm and focused on the bigger picture.

3. Selling to Serve, James Ashford

Provided insight into how to give more value to your clients and get them buying more from you.

It’s helped us think about how we sell to our clients, our pricing and service.

4. How To Win Friends and Influence People, Dale Carnegie

This book changed how I talked and work with people and helped shape my interactions in a way that helps others and yourself.

5. The Numbers Business, Della Hudson FCA

Has helped so many novice bookkeepers/accountants set up their own practice. Good advice throughout.

6. Shoe Dog: A Memoir by The Creator of NIKE, Phil Knight

This is a true testament to the struggles and emotions you go through as a business-owner.

7. The Lean Startup, Eric Ries

Many of my clients, including myself, are currently or have been a startup. This is a great introduction to business.

8. Start With Why, Simon Sinek

It really helped me focus on my values and why we’re in business rather than what we do. This helped us look at the direction of our firm and how we want to grow in future.

Watch Simon’s brilliant TED talk here.

The Receipt Bank Library, London

9. 4 Hour Work Week, Timothy Ferriss

Inspired me to become self-employed and realise that it’s all about the small victories that get you to where you want to go.

This #1 New York Times best-selling author shows you how to live anywhere and escape the 9-5. If you enjoy this, you might also like Will Farnell’s take.

10. The E-Myth and E-Myth Revisited, Michael E. Gerber

It gave me a true understanding about what I needed to focus on and how to build a business.

This book modelled how to set up our firm in a franchise-type scenario. When I read it back in 2008, it changed the trajectory of our firm moving forwards.

11. The Digital Firm, Will Farnell

Some great ideas and inspiration.

Join Will Farnell at an upcoming Virtual Masterclass on June 18th, where he’ll explore how you can integrate tech, people and processes.

12. Profit First, Mike Michalowicz

While the concept of the book isn’t necessarily groundbreaking, one concept stood out. I’ve used it in helping talk with many clients. Do you have a business or a job? If it’s a job, you might as well as do it for someone else without all the stress of running a business.

Catch his blog post on seizing the day, the why and how of Profit First here.

13. The Power of Habit, Charles Duhigg

It has helped to reshape the way I approach a behaviour that I want to change (or start). How to make starting (or stopping) habits easy.

Read this post to find out the daily habits of other successful accountants.

14. Traction, Kevin Pierce

We have implemented the Entrepreneurial Operating System discussed in the book and have experienced some really positive signs since establishing this.15. The Chimp Paradox – The Acclaimed Mind Management Programme to Help You Achieve Success, Confidence and Happiness, Steve Peters

It is mentally challenging when running a business, therefore if you can control your own emotions and responses, you can then proceed to control your business.

16. Relentless: From Good to Great to Unstoppable, Tim S. Grover

I really liked this book because it explains that there are steps to becoming the best you. And it requires you to push yourself beyond what others are doing to get you there.

17. You Can Heal Your Life, Louise L. Hay

She taught me that I have choice, choice to even get out of bed in the morning. So if I am choosing everything why would I choose anything but being positive.

18. The Travels of A T-Shirt in The Global Economy, Pietra Rivoli

By focusing on one white t-shirt, this is a great illustration of the people and places involved in international trade.

19. Principles, Ray Dahlio

Ray Dalio does a great job explaining how continuous improvement can be implemented in an organization, and how criticism can be used to build rather than break down.

20. Value Pricing, Harry Macdivitt

It helped me learn about how adding value to clients is key in pricing

If you’re looking to perfect your value pricing and deliver a stand-out service, here’s another for your reading list: the ultimate guide to pricing cloud services.

21. Flying Solo: How To Go It Alone in Business

After deciding to leave the security of corporate life or go it alone, I had a reasonably clear idea of what I wanted to do but plan how to do it. I found Flying Solo at the perfect time to helped visualize my goals. It reinforced that I do know what I am doing and have the foundation necessary to get there.

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