Holiday reads for small business owners

JULIAN SMITH
Last updated 05:00 10/01/2013
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Julian Smith selects six books to give business owners inspiration for 2013.

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One of the real joys of the summer break is having time to get some serious reading done. Without the pressures of work, and with long patches of sunshine and free time, summer is an excellent time to catch up on books you’ve been meaning to read.

For small business owners, reading during the holidays is opportunity to relax and to get new ideas and inspiration.

Here are some great reads for business owners over the summer break:

1. Synchronicity: The Inner Path to Leadership

By Joseph Jaworski

It's fast becoming the Bible for CEOs who have embraced the concept of servant leadership and authenticity. Jaworski, a highly successful businessman in his own right, recounts his journey and insights around leadership. Central to the book is the concept of synchronicity – where you can unlock opportunities by being authentic to yourself and your values.

2. Managing your mind: The mental fitness guide

By Gillian Butler and Tony Hope

This is an essential read for 'A-type personalities' or stressed out business leaders looking for practical, honest advice on how to improve their mental fitness. It's full of tips on how to manage time, sleep better, improve your relationships and keep things in perspective. 

3. The new capitalist manifesto: Building a disruptively better business

By Umair Haque

Recommended to me by an economist, this book introduces the concept of “disruptive change” and proposes a 5-step model for developing a sustainable business in the 21st century. It's a fairly cerebral read for those happy to wade into some economic theory, laced with a social conscience.

4. The Hobbit

By J.R.R. Tolkien

Now that New Zealand is Middle Earth, it’s probably a good idea to know what all the fuss is about. If a deep dive into the world of fantasy doesn’t float your boat, the hardback edition makes an excellent door stop!

5. Made in New Zealand

By Chris Mirams and Ross Land

Made in New Zealand is a stunning book that celebrates the Kiwi culture by saluting notable and interesting New Zealanders. It shares their insights and perspectives on how being a Kiwi has influenced and shaped them. It's full of extraordinary photography and is an inspirational read. 

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6. Practical beekeeping in New Zealand: The definitive guide

By Andrew Matherson and Murray Reid

Okay, so I do have an agenda with this recomendation, because I'm a novice bee keeper, I now know that New Zealand needs more bees and beekeepers. This book is an excellent local guide to all you need to know to have a honey factory running in your backyard. And for business owners, beehives are a fascinating study of a collaborative society and a well run organisation. 

Julian Smith (@JulianTSmith) is the general manager for MYOB in New Zealand.

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