1. Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill

“If you truly desire money so keenly that your desire is an obsession, you will have no difficulty in convincing yourself that you will acquire it. The object is to want money, and to be so determined to have it that you convince yourself that you will have it.”


2. Feel the Fear and Do it Anyway by Susan Jeffers

“By reeducating the mind, you can accept fear as simply a fact of life rather than a barrier to success.”


3. The Alchemist by Paulo Coehlo

“When you really want something, the whole universe conspires in helping you to achieve it.”


4. The Element: How Finding Your Passion Changes Everything by Ken Robinson

“We are all born with extraordinary powers of imagination, intelligence, feeling, intuition, spirituality, and of physical and sensory awareness. For the most part, we use only a fraction of these powers, and some not at all.”


5. Magic of Thinking Big by David J. Schwartz

“Success doesn’t demand a price. Every step forward pays a dividend.”


6. The Last Lecture by Randy Pausch

“My uniqueness, I realized, came in the specifics of all the dreams—from incredibly meaningful to decidedly quirky—that define my 46 years of life. Sitting there, I knew that despite the cancer, I truly believed I was a lucky man because I had lived out these dreams.”


7. Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff...and It’s All Small Stuff by Richard Carlson

“When you learn the habit of responding to life with more ease, problems that seemed ‘insurmountable’ will begin to seem more manageable.”


8. The Power of Full Engagement: Managing Energy, Not Time, Is the Key to High Performance and Personal Renewel by Jim Loehr

“The performance demands that most people face in their everyday work environments dwarf those of any professional athletes we have ever trained.”


9. Crossing the Chasm: Marketing and Selling Disruptive Products to Mainstream Customers by Geoffrey A. Moore

“‘Why me?’ cries out the unsuccessful entrepreneur. Or rather ‘Why not me?’ ‘Why not us?’ chorus his equally unsuccessful investors. ‘Look at our product. Is it not as good—nay, better—than the product that beat us out?’.... In fact, feature for feature, the less successful product is often arguably superior.”


10. Selling the Invisible: A Field Guide to Modern Marketing by Harry Beckwith

“The new marketing is more than a way of doing; it is a way of thinking. It begins with an understanding of the distinctive characteristics of services—their invisibility and intangibility—and of the unique nature of service prospects and users—their fear, their limited time, their sometimes illogical ways of making decisions, and their most important drives and needs.”


11. Influence: The Psychology of Influence and Persuasion by Robert Cialdini

“There is a group of people who know very well where the weapons of automatic influence lie and employ them regularly and expertly to get what they want. They go from social encounter to social encounter requesting others to comply with their wishes; their frequency of success is dazzling.”


12. Positioning: The Battle for Your Mind by Al Ries and Jack Trout

“Positioning is not what you do to a product. Positioning is what you do to the mind of the prospect.”


13. Buy-ology: Truth and Lies About Why We Buy by Martin Lindstrom

“If marketers could uncover what is going on in our brains that makes us choose one brand over another—what information passes through our brain’s filter and what information doesn’t—well, that would be key to truly building brands of the future."


14. Permission Marketing: Turning Strangers Into Friends and Friends Into Customers by Seth Godin

“Marketers want to get their messages in front of you. They must get their messages in front of you, just to survive. The only problem is—do you really want more marketing messages?"


15. Guerrilla Marketing: Easy and Inexpensive Strategies For Making Big Profits From Your Small Business by Jay Conrad Levinson

“Guerrilla marketing requires you to comprehend every facet of marketing, experiment with many of them, winnow out the losers, double up on the winners, and then use the marketing tactics that prove themselves to you in the battleground of real life.”


16. The Long Tail: Why the Future of Business Is Selling More by Chris Anderson

“As demand shifts towards the niches, the economics of providing them improve further, and so on, creating a positive feedback loop that will transform entire industries—and the culture—for decades to come.”


17. Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds by Charles MacKay

“We find that whole communities suddenly fix their minds upon one object, and go mad in its pursuit; that millions of people become simultaneously impressed with one delusion, and run after it, till their attention is caught by some new folly more captivating than the first.”


18. The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People: Powerful Lessons in Personal Change by Stephen R. Covey

“Sow a thought, reap an action; sow an action, reap a habit; sow a habit, reap a character; sow a character, reap a destiny.”


19. How to Win Friends & Influence People by Dale Carnegie

"The unvarnished truth is that almost all the people you meet feel themselves superior to you in some way, and a sure way to their hearts is to let them realize in some subtle way that you recognize their importance, and recognize it sincerely.”


20. Awaken the Giant Within: How to Take Immediate Control of Your Mental, Emotional, Physical and Financial Destiny! by Tony Robbins

“If you can’t, you must. If you must, you can.”


21. As a Man Thinketh by James Allen

“The dreamers are the saviors of the world. As the visible world is sustained by the invisible, so men, through all their trials and sins and sordid vocations, are nourished by the beautiful visions of their solitary dreamers.”


22. The Greatest Salesman in the World by Og Mandino

“I will live this day as if it is my last. This day is all I have and these hours are now my eternity. I greet this sunrise with cries of joy as a prisoner who is reprieved from death. I lift mine arms with thanks for this priceless gift of a new day.”


23. Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us by Daniel H. Pink

“For artists, scientists, inventors, schoolchildren, and the rest of us, intrinsic motivation—the drive to do something because it is interesting, challenging, and absorbing—is essential for high levels of creativity.”


24. The Power of Positive Thinking by Dr. Norman Vincent Peale

“Action is a great restorer and builder of confidence. Inaction is not only the result, but the cause, of fear. Perhaps the action you take will be successful; perhaps different action or adjustments will have to follow. But any action is better than no action at all.”


25. How to Lie With Statistics by Darrell Huff

“A well-wrapped statistic is better than Hitler’s ‘big lie’; it misleads, yet it cannot be pinned on you.”


26. The No Asshole Rule: Building a Civilized Workplace and Suriving One That Isn’t by Robert L. Sutton

“Two-faced backstabbers…who have enough skill and emotional control to save their dirty work for moments when they can’t get caught, are tougher to stop—even though they may do as much damage as a raging maniac.”


27. The 4-Hour Work Week: Escape 9-5, Live Anywhere, and Join the New Rich by Tim Ferriss

“Alternating periods of activity and rest is necessary to survive, let alone thrive. Capacity, interest, and mental endurance all wax and wane. Plan accordingly.”


28. The Peter Principle: Why Things Always Go Wrong by Laurence J. Peter

“Anything that works will be used in progressively more challenging applications until it fails.”


29. Crazy Bosses by Stanley Bing

“After nearly 6,000 years of evidence on the subject, one thing stands clear: The people who end up as leaders in any organization, large or small, are often the craziest guys around.”


30. 21 Dirty Tricks at Work: How to Beat the Game of Office Politics by Mike Phipps

“Dirty tricks are more than just a career-threatening nuisance; they also form part of the political backdrop to all the great recent organizational scandals.”


31. Don’t Bring it to Work: Breaking the Family Patterns That Limit Success by Sylvia Lafair

“The reason most organizational programs abort is that they fail to deal with our life patterns, which are at the foundation of workplace anxiety, tension, and conflict.”


32. Poorly Made in China: An Insider’s Account of the China Production Game by Paul Midler

“American companies…were no match for savvy Chinese industrialists who often went out of their way to manipulate product specifications to widen profit margins.”


33. Mastering the Complex Sale: How to Compete and Win When the Stakes are High! by Jeff Thull

“Customers are wrestling with mission-critical decisions, evaluating solutions that all sound the same, and struggling to achieve the value they expect, when experience has shown them that far too many solutions come packaged with a high degree of risk and a low probability of success.”


34. The Psychology of Selling: Increase Your Sales Faster and Easier Than You Ever Thought Possible by Brian Tracy

“Salespeople are the most vital people in any business. Without sales, the biggest and most sophisticated companies shut down. Sales are the spark plug in the engine of free enterprise. There is a direct relationship between the success of the sales community and the success of the entire country."


35. Strategic Selling: The Unique Sales System Proven Successful by America’s Best Companies by Robert B. Miler and Stephen E. Heiman

“A hundred years ago—even 20 or 30 years ago—it was possible, if not always easy, to close major business by calling on and satisfying a key decision-maker. Today, every piece of business entails multiple decisions, and those decisions are virtually never made by the same person. Not only do you have to contend with multiple decisions, but the people who make those decisions may not even work in the same place.”


36. Perfect Selling by Linda Richardson

“Your opening can be the most human part of the call. It can be the most personal. You can be the most awkward and uncomfortable. It can also be the most gracious and fun. It can be many of these things at once. It is always telling."


37. How to Master the Art of Selling by Tom Hopkins

“I learned a long time ago that selling is the highest-paid hard work—and the lowest-paid easy work—that I could find. And I also found out another exciting thing about selling—the choice was mine. I discovered that what I did achieve in my selling career was entirely up to me, and that what anyone else wanted wasn’t going to make much difference. The only thing that really mattered was what I did for myself, and what I gave to myself.”


38. The Little Red Book of Selling: 12.5 Principles of Sales Greatness by Jeffrey Gitomer

“It never ceases to amaze me that companies will spend thousands of hours and millions of dollars teaching people ‘how to sell,’ and not one minute or not $10 on ‘why they buy.’ And ‘why they buy’ is all that matters.”


39. Spin Selling by Neil Rackham

“The traditional selling models, methods, and techniques that most of us have been trained to use work best in small sales. For now, let me define small as a sale which can normally be completed in a single call and which involves a low dollar value. Unfortunately, these tried-and-true low-value sales techniques, most of them dating from the 1920s, don’t work today.”


40. The Richest Man in Babylon by George S. Clason

“Budget thy expenses that thou mayest have coins to pay for thy necessities, to pay for thy enjoyments, and to gratify thy worthwhile desires without spending more than nine-tenths of thy earnings.”


41. Rich Dad, Poor Dad by Robert T. Kiyosaki

“The key to financial freedom and great wealth is a person’s ability or skill to convert earned income into passive income and/or portfolio income.”


42. The Millionaire Fast Lane: Crack the Code to Wealth and Live Rich for a Lifetime by MJ DeMarko

“Show me a 22-year-old who got rich investing in mutual funds. Show me the man who earned millions in three years by maximizing his 401(k). Show me the young twentysomething who got rich clipping coupons. Where are these people? They don’t exist.”


43. Your Money or Your Life: 9 Steps to Transforming Your Relationship with Money and Achieving Financial Independence by Vicki Robin and Joe Dominguez

“Conditions have changed, but we are still operating financially by the rules established during the Industrial Revolution—rules based on creating more material possessions. But our high standard of living has not led to a high quality of life—for us or for the planet.”


44. Total Money Makeover: A Proven Plan for Financial Success by Dave Ramsey

“What I have done is packaged the time-honored information into a process that is doable and has inspired millions to act on it.”


45. Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap...And Others Don’t by Jim Collins

“Our findings do not represent a quick fix, or the next fashion statement in a long string of management fads, or the next buzzword of the day, or a new ‘program’ to introduce. No! The only way to make any company visionary is through a long-term commitment to an eternal process of building the organization to preserve the core and stimulate progress.”


46. The Black Swan: The Impact of the Highly Improbable by Nassim Nicholas Taleb

“Our world is dominated by the extreme, the unknown, and the very improbable (improbable according to our current knowledge)—and all the while, we spend our time engaged in small talk, focusing on the known, and the repeated.”


47. The Innovator’s Dilemma: The Revolutionary Book That Will Change the Way You Do Business by Clayton M. Christensen

“Because these firms listened to their customers, invested aggressively in new technologies that would provide their customers more and better products of the sort they wanted, and because they carefully studied market trends and systematically allocated investment capital to innovations that promised the best returns, they lost their positions of leadership.”


48. The Mythical Man-Month: Essays on Software Engineering by Frederick P. Brooks Jr.

“Systems program building is an entropy-decreasing process, hence inherently metastable. Program maintenance is an entropy-increasing process, and even its most skillful execution only delays the subsidence of the system into unfixable obsolescence.”


49. The Dilbert Principle: A Cubicle’s-Eye View of Bosses, Meetings, Management Fads & Other Workplace Afflictions by Scott Adams

“We’re a planet of nearly 6 billion ninnies living in a civilization that was created by a few thousand amazingly smart deviants.”


More From Inc.


Photo of woman reading courtesy of Shutterstock.