The Top 7 Books For Startup Founders

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YouTube Transcript: English (auto-generated)

00:00

hey i’m going to show you the top seven

00:01

books that every startup founder has to

00:04

read right now

00:05

[Music]

00:11

hey my name is russell brunson and this

00:13

is the very first in a video series for

00:15

our new entrepreneur funnel hacker book

00:17

club every once in a while i’m gonna be

00:18

bringing you guys out brand new videos

00:20

going over some of my favorite books and

00:22

today i’m gonna go over the top seven

00:23

books for startup founders now those who

00:25

don’t know me i am a founder of a

00:27

startup called click funnels we’ve grown

00:29

dramatically over the last seven years

00:31

uh from zero to over 100 million dollars

00:32

in sales and people always ask me what

00:34

books did you read along the way to help

00:36

you to grow this company and so that’s

00:38

what we talked about today is the top

00:39

seven books for you if you are startup

00:41

founder you’re trying to launch a new

00:42

software company a new supplement or a

00:43

new product whatever it is these are the

00:45

books i’d recommend you read first

00:47

you probably heard that most startups

00:48

fail and the reason why is not because

00:50

the entrepreneurs aren’t passionate

00:52

because they don’t have the insight or

00:53

the knowledge to actually execute what

00:54

they’re trying to do and that’s why

00:56

these books are so important because it

00:57

takes your passion gives you some

00:59

knowledge and gives you the tools to

01:00

actually execute on your vision now

01:02

obviously you can learn stuff in school

01:04

and you can learn ton of stuff like real

01:05

world application out there doing the

01:07

thing but books are special books are

01:09

like a shortcut uh tony robbins to talk

01:12

about it’s like taking a decade of an

01:14

author’s life and compressing it down

01:15

into a day and so you get this ability

01:17

to really shortcut your success by

01:19

finding a book learning from someone

01:20

who’s already done it shortcutting your

01:21

success and compressing decades into

01:23

days

01:24

all right now the very first book you

01:25

should read is my book traffic secrets

01:27

just kidding you totally should read

01:28

that but today’s first book is called

01:30

remote now remote is written by the

01:32

founders of base camp the reason why

01:34

this book is so important because right

01:36

now we’re in economy we’re in an age

01:38

where everybody has to work remote now

01:40

we read this book here uh right when we

01:42

launched click funnels and we were about

01:43

to get everybody to move to boise and

01:45

get a big huge office then this book

01:46

came out we read it and we decided you

01:48

know what let’s not work in a huge

01:50

office let’s let people work from home

01:51

and right now clickfunnels has over 400

01:53

employees working from home and when the

01:55

covet hit and everyone had to break up

01:56

things never had to go remote it didn’t

01:58

slow us down even a little bit because

01:59

we already have these principles so for

02:01

today if you’re trying to build a

02:02

company this is how you start you don’t

02:04

start by taking on money and buying a

02:06

building you start by going remote it’s

02:08

cheaper it’s faster and it’s an easier

02:09

way to get your startup off the ground

02:11

and this is the blueprint to show you

02:12

how to do that what’s crazy when we read

02:14

this we didn’t realize how important

02:16

this thing was going to be seven years

02:17

later when everything hit the fan what’s

02:19

crazy this book came out in 2013. before

02:22

zoom was cool before zoom was even a

02:23

company and for crying out loud they

02:25

gave you the the book it’s called remote

02:28

office not required and after you read

02:29

this you’d be like man actually having

02:31

an office is going to hurt our

02:32

productivity we get less done so that’s

02:33

why this is so timely and so important

02:35

for you guys because it literally is a

02:36

blueprint to show you how to work remote

02:38

with amazing teams and still get stuff

02:40

done that’s how basecamp grew as big as

02:42

they have that’s how clickfunnels has

02:43

grown as well now one of my favorite

02:44

quotes from the book remote is the

02:47

ability to be alone with your thoughts

02:48

is in fact one of the key advantages of

02:50

working remotely when you work on your

02:52

own far away from the buzzing swarm at

02:54

headquarters you can settle into your

02:55

own productive zone you can actually get

02:57

work done the same work you couldn’t get

02:59

done at work yes

03:01

so if you’re thinking about a startup

03:03

and you want to work remote because you

03:05

kind of legally have to right now get

03:07

this book it’s the first one to read

03:09

it’ll show you exactly how to do it

03:10

it’ll save you a ton of money and a ton

03:11

of time

03:13

all right book number two is called shoe

03:15

dog by phil knight i’ve got here on my

03:16

phone because i listened to the

03:17

audiobook of this one because such a

03:19

great story now most people don’t think

03:21

about nike as a startup but there was a

03:23

time when it was and phil knight when he

03:24

wrote this book each of the chapters is

03:26

titled the year like 1973 1974 1975 and

03:30

so on and so forth some of my favorite

03:31

things about this book is um you had a

03:33

chance to see an empire built from the

03:35

ground up step by step by step um you

03:37

watched him as he took these crazy risks

03:39

where he’s literally flying to china and

03:40

tokyo all these places try to get shoes

03:43

back before the internet before things

03:44

were happening where all the

03:45

correspondence happened through mail and

03:47

you’re wiring you know money and not

03:49

being able to hear back from them for

03:50

three or four weeks so they you know

03:51

sent you a letter back and just all the

03:53

craziness he had to go through to create

03:54

a company back before entrepreneurship

03:56

was cool before it was easy and it was

03:58

super inspiring to hear his story it

04:00

gave me faith and hope in what’s

04:01

possible for me when you see what was

04:03

possible for him on top of that there

04:05

are some really cool lessons here uh

04:06

that i learned personally um about my

04:08

family

04:09

one of phil knight’s sons actually

04:12

hated nike so bad that he refused to

04:14

wear nike shoes and in the in the book

04:17

his son uh actually ends up passing away

04:19

and he said that one of his biggest

04:20

regrets in life is that he never learned

04:22

uh how to figure out the puzzle of his

04:23

of his son for me at the time of me

04:26

reading this i was really struggling and

04:27

still am i’m completely honest with one

04:28

of my teenagers and uh it really gave me

04:31

motivation to to to step back say look i

04:33

can build a company that does billions

04:34

of dollars in sales but if his biggest

04:36

regret was figuring out um the puzzle of

04:38

the sudden and what’s my regret gonna be

04:40

and it made me really want to spend more

04:41

time trying to figure out my kids and

04:42

help serve them in a way that helps them

04:44

because you have no idea how long

04:46

they’re going to be here for and so that

04:47

was one of my biggest takeaways and

04:48

lessons from the book shoe dog when i

04:50

first read the book i didn’t know what

04:51

the title shoe dog meant and a shoe dog

04:53

is somebody who’s obsessed with shoes

04:55

they’re obsessed with how they work how

04:56

they feel how they look like all those

04:58

type of things and so when phil that was

05:00

creating this like he became obsessed he

05:01

worked with people who was obsessed his

05:03

coach his track coach was obsessed he

05:05

literally cut the shoes apart and

05:06

reselled them together and all sorts of

05:08

crazy things he was the one who like

05:09

went and poured the the rubber into the

05:11

waffle iron that created the first uh

05:13

souls for the nike airs and just crazy

05:15

things like that and so i’m always

05:17

looking just like phil knight was

05:18

looking for people obsessed with shoes

05:19

you know in my world i’ve been looking

05:20

people who are obsessed with funnels we

05:22

call my funnel dogs or something but for

05:24

your business like who are the people

05:25

that are obsessed with with the products

05:27

and services that you sell find those

05:29

people and get proximity to them one of

05:30

my favorite quotes in this book is when

05:32

phil knight said i tell men and women in

05:34

their mid-20s not to settle for a job or

05:36

profession or even a career seek a

05:38

calling even if you don’t know what that

05:40

means seek it if you’re following your

05:42

calling the fatigue will be easier to

05:44

bear the disappointments will be the

05:45

fuel and the highs will be like nothing

05:47

you’ve ever felt

05:48

so you want to think big for your

05:49

startup and see a vision of what the

05:50

future could look like get shoot out all

05:52

right book number three is called lost

05:54

and founder by rand fishkin this

05:57

honestly is one of my favorite books of

05:59

all time rand was the founder of moz.com

06:02

he tells the story in here about

06:04

everything he went through when he was

06:05

when he was creating moth and he took on

06:07

money and what that looked like and how

06:09

having a venture back company how it

06:11

spiraled him into depression and a whole

06:12

bunch of problems and things like that

06:14

now this book is near and dear to my

06:15

heart because when we launched click

06:16

funnels we were in about a year and a

06:18

half two years and we’re thinking about

06:19

taking on money everyone kept telling us

06:21

go raise money talk to the vcs talk to

06:22

the private equity companies we were

06:24

going to and rand actually came to boise

06:26

and gave a presentation to a small group

06:27

about a hundred entrepreneurs and i had

06:29

a chance to hear them tell the story

06:30

about how they raise funds how they how

06:32

they grew their company and then

06:33

afterwards i had a chance to pull him

06:34

aside and ask him uh how it was and he

06:37

told me the truth he told me how hard it

06:38

was how you know what he actually made

06:40

as a as an owner of this company um the

06:42

depression he went through all sorts of

06:44

things because he told me that in in

06:46

person we decided not to take on money

06:48

and we haven’t ever since then and later

06:50

this book came out we actually told the

06:51

entire story of how it worked how he

06:53

grew the company and why he would never

06:54

have done it again and so for anyone

06:56

who’s in that phase where you’re trying

06:57

to bootstrap something you’re trying to

06:58

grow and you’re like should i take on

06:59

money should i not take on money this

07:01

book right here will show you the

07:03

perspective of what happens if you do

07:04

decide to take on that money what that

07:06

looks like how to prepare yourself and i

07:08

think more importantly on the flip side

07:10

hopefully like me it’ll convince you you

07:12

should try to focus on bootstrapping

07:13

your company because it’s a better way

07:14

to control the company keep it your own

07:16

anyway this book was just so powerful

07:18

for me and i hope you have a chance to

07:20

read it as well one of my favorite

07:22

quotes from this book

07:23

is short and sweet it’s the great

07:24

founders don’t do what they love they

07:26

enable a vision book number four is

07:29

behind the cloud by mark benioff now who

07:31

is mark benioff he is the founder of a

07:33

little company you may have heard of

07:34

called salesforce they built this

07:36

company into like a 20 billion year

07:38

company it is insane and behind the

07:40

clouds is actually the playbook that

07:42

mark created showing how they launched

07:45

salesforce i always look at salesforce

07:46

as this huge software company but when

07:48

they started they were the first people

07:50

ever to do software as a service

07:51

platform they were disrupting an entire

07:53

industry this book is literally written

07:55

like a playbook like as if this is your

07:57

football playbook was like play number

07:58

one we did this play number two play

08:00

number three some of these plays are

08:01

crazy it wasn’t like they went and

08:03

bought ads on facebook it was like they

08:04

found their competitors events and they

08:06

went and found all the taxis in the town

08:08

and they hired the taxi drivers to wear

08:11

salesforce clothes and signs and all

08:13

sorts of crazy things and they picketed

08:14

it outside of um outside their

08:16

competitors events and all sorts of

08:17

crazy things they did to get the message

08:19

out about their product and their

08:20

service initially i remember reading

08:22

this i felt like mark benioff was cut

08:24

from the same cloth as me this playbook

08:26

that i grew salesforce was exciting for

08:27

me and especially look at it now as you

08:29

know somebody’s built one of the biggest

08:30

companies in the world to look back at

08:32

what they did when they first started

08:33

when they’re grass roots in it and this

08:35

book will give you tons and tons of

08:37

plays that you can use to execute and to

08:39

grow your startup as well one of my

08:40

favorite quotes from behind the cloud

08:42

mark betty off said seize the

08:44

opportunity in front of you imagine

08:46

invent disrupt do good i know that you

08:49

must be passionate unreasonable and a

08:50

little bit crazy to follow your own

08:52

ideas and to do things differently but

08:54

it’s worth it life grows relative to

08:56

one’s investment in it

08:57

all right book number five i’m a little

08:59

bit nervous to share this with you

09:00

called crossing the chasm now this is

09:03

the actual book if you read it it’s

09:05

really deep i couldn’t understand about

09:07

a third of the words in the book but the

09:09

good news is is there’s a cliff note

09:11

version that i also got on my phone

09:12

called crossing the chasm book summary

09:14

and this one is amazing now crossing the

09:17

chasm as you start growing your company

09:18

there’s many different phases you take

09:20

somebody through right initially it’s

09:21

going to be your early adopters are

09:22

going to come and find out about your

09:23

product and then the innovators are

09:25

going to come in and then there’s this

09:26

chasm like how do you get from the

09:28

people who are excited about your

09:29

product your service to get it into the

09:30

hands of everybody in the world and that

09:32

chasm is one of the hardest things to

09:34

actually step through and get to on the

09:36

other side and so what i want to

09:38

recommend this book is because as you’re

09:39

building your company what you

09:40

understand the first focus is getting

09:42

the innovators and the early adopters

09:43

and getting those people into your

09:44

product or service and then you have to

09:46

transition your marketing your product

09:48

or service to be able to cross the chasm

09:50

if you can do that that’s when your

09:51

business goes from hundreds of millions

09:53

of dollars in sales to billions of

09:54

dollars in sales and so understanding

09:56

that uh when you’re when you’re building

09:58

your startup will help you to know where

09:59

you’re going and the vision the mission

10:01

of your company and so i recommend

10:02

getting crossing the chasm get the cliff

10:04

note version because it’s so much easier

10:06

to understand but this book is amazing

10:08

as well one of the reasons why this book

10:09

has been so useful for click funnels

10:11

right now is that we’ve gone through

10:12

those first two phases of growth and

10:14

over the last 12 months or so the big

10:16

question we’re asking is how do we cross

10:17

the chasm we got the early innovators we

10:19

got the early adopters we got those

10:21

people how do we cross the chasm how do

10:22

we have to shift our marketing how do we

10:23

shift our business how do we shift the

10:25

actual software in the product and so

10:27

it’s come down to us redesigning our

10:28

entire business now that we’re trying to

10:30

make that leap how do we have read this

10:32

book prior to that we probably made some

10:33

different decisions earlier on that we

10:35

made this transition easier so if you’re

10:37

just getting started it’s important

10:38

because it can help you see those things

10:39

and if you’ve already grown now your

10:41

point where you’re trying to cross the

10:42

chasm this book will give you the

10:43

blueprint and the game plan to do that

10:44

one of my favorite quotes from here is

10:47

to get an early market started it

10:48

requires an entrepreneurial company with

10:50

a breakthrough technology product that

10:52

enables a new and compelling application

10:54

a technology enthusiast who can evaluate

10:56

and appreciate the superiority of a

10:57

product over current alternatives and a

10:59

whale healed visionary who can foresee

11:01

an order of magnitude improvement from

11:03

implementing the new application now

11:05

real quick guys that was actually one of

11:06

the simpler quotes okay that was a

11:08

mouthful right that’s how most the book

11:10

is but if you think about it you read it

11:11

a few times it is actually pretty

11:13

amazing book number six and this is

11:15

probably an unlikely one for most of you

11:16

guys who are starting businesses book

11:18

number six is extreme ownership now this

11:21

one is so important on so many levels

11:23

for you or for me as the leader as the

11:25

entrepreneur if you don’t understand

11:27

this principle and you blame your team

11:28

or blame other people you are going to

11:30

struggle you have to learn how to take

11:31

extreme ownership of everything that’s

11:33

happening inside your company on top of

11:35

that you need to teach your management

11:36

team your leaders your managers this

11:38

exact same philosophy in fact i believe

11:40

in this so much not only did i buy this

11:41

book for myself i bought it for my

11:43

entire company we took it we shipped it

11:45

to everyone said everyone needs to read

11:46

this book this is part of your job it’s

11:48

one hour a day until you finish it

11:49

you’ve got to be reading this book

11:50

because we need everybody at every

11:52

single level inside of our company

11:53

taking extreme ownership on everything

11:55

that they do if they do that you will be

11:57

amazed at how your company will blossom

11:58

and it’ll flourish but it starts with

12:00

you as the entrepreneur leading this

12:02

charge taking extreme ownership the

12:03

problems are your fault the good things

12:05

are your fault like everything is your

12:06

fault when you understand that and you

12:08

believe it you realize if there’s a

12:09

problem it’s not that my team sucks or

12:11

my person it’s always you you are the

12:13

problem take extreme ownership when you

12:15

do that it gives you the ability to

12:16

actually change things and shift things

12:18

and make them better this book was one

12:20

of my favorite books not just from a

12:21

business standpoint but personal

12:22

development as well and it’s one that’s

12:24

going to help you to grow your company

12:25

to grow yourself and to change the world

12:27

even faster when we shipped this out to

12:29

everybody we had 300 employees at the

12:30

time we spent 8 000

12:32

getting this message out to our team

12:34

that’s how valuable and how important it

12:35

was to us and how valuable and important

12:36

it should be to you as well one of my

12:38

favorite quotes from uh from this book

12:40

is

12:41

the test is not a complex one when the

12:43

alarm goes off do you get out of bed or

12:45

do you lie there in comfort and fall

12:46

back asleep if you have the discipline

12:48

to get out of bed then you win you pass

12:50

the test if you’re mentally weak for

12:52

that moment you let the weakness keep

12:54

you in bed then you fail though it seems

12:56

small these weaknesses translate to more

12:57

significant decisions but if you

12:59

exercise discipline that too translates

13:01

to more substantial elements of your

13:03

life

13:04

and the last book number seven in this

13:06

series

13:07

is a book called blue ocean strategy one

13:10

of the problems that most businesses

13:12

have is that they get into a market and

13:13

they become a me too okay in this book

13:15

it talks about there’s a blue ocean

13:17

which means that you’re out there

13:18

fishing there’s nobody else around right

13:20

and then there’s a red ocean the red

13:21

ocean means there’s a whole bunch of

13:22

people all fighting over the same fish

13:24

right and the waters are bloody because

13:26

there’s so many people all competing

13:27

here now most businesses go and they

13:28

find where’s the red ocean where’s

13:30

everybody competing where can i jump in

13:31

and that’s how they do it and the

13:33

problem is that you’re fighting amongst

13:34

the scraps with everybody else the power

13:37

when you create a new company is

13:38

creating a is finding a blue ocean or

13:39

creating a blue ocean where you’re the

13:40

only one fishing that ocean we launched

13:42

click funnels we were the only funnel

13:44

building software there was on the

13:45

planet that’s made it so simple for us

13:46

to go out and get market share quickly

13:48

how do we come and launch as an

13:49

autoresponder company or a payments

13:51

company or um a crm or marketing

13:53

automation there are tons of people in

13:55

all those spaces but nobody was in the

13:57

sales funnel market so we were the very

13:59

first we walked into blue ocean and it

14:01

gave us the ability for years to get in

14:03

there to grow our company before anybody

14:05

else came and tried to fish out of our

14:06

waters that’s the power of really

14:08

understanding this blue ocean strategy

14:10

it makes growing your company so much

14:11

simpler in the very beginning and gives

14:13

you more ability to grow and scale over

14:14

time as well

14:15

one of my favorite quotes from blue

14:17

ocean strategy is blue ocean shift is a

14:20

systematic process to move your

14:22

organization from cutthroat markets with

14:24

bloody competition what we think of as

14:26

red oceans full of sharks to wide open

14:28

blue oceans or new markets devoid of

14:30

competition in a way that brings your

14:32

people along

14:34

so there you go there are my top seven

14:35

books for startup founders how many guys

14:37

would like these books and i can throw

14:39

in my book as well as traffic secrets

14:40

that means like these eight books

14:42

actually shipped to your house i’m not

14:44

counting my phone i’ll get the physical

14:45

version i can send you my phone but if

14:47

you would like these this we’re gonna do

14:48

we’re gonna do a contest in the

14:50

description down below there’s a link

14:51

where you can enter the contest it’s

14:52

gonna show exactly what to do and one

14:54

lucky winner is gonna get all of these

14:56

books get a comment you gotta like you

14:57

subscribe do all the things but then

14:59

click on the description and join the

15:00

contest and you may be the lucky person

15:02

who’s gonna get a copy of all these

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