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The Personal MBA - A DIY approach to Business Education

The Personal MBA (PMBA) is a project designed to help you educate yourself about advanced business concepts.

Substantially increase your knowledge of business on your own time and with little cost, all without setting foot inside a classroom.

The PMBA is more flexible than a traditional MBA program, doesn't involve going into massive debt, and won't interrupt your income stream for two years. Just pick up one of these business books, learn as much as you can, discuss what you learn with others, then go out into the real world and make great things happen.

See http://personalmba.com/ for more information.

Started in 2005, the reading list is updated regularly.

The 2008 version has 77 recommended books, plus another 16 books suggested as a supplement, for a total of 93 books.

At a normal reading pace, it should take up to two years to read all these books.

You can find a lot of these books at your local library or other sources for free. If you choose to start buying to build your personal library, it would be in the range of $1,400.00 by shopping around to Amazon, eBay, and others.

Here it is -- The Personal MBA Recommended Reading List (2008 Edition) --

Quick Start

01 10 Days to Faster Reading by Abby Marks-Beale
02 StrengthsFinder 2.0 by Tom Rath
03 Lead the Field by Earl Nightingale
04 The Art of Exceptional Living by Jim Rohn

Productivity & Effectiveness

05 The Effective Executive by Peter Drucker
06 Getting Things Done by David Allen
07 Bit Literacy by Mark Hurst
08 The Creative Habit by Twyla Tharp
09 The Path of Least Resistance by Robert Fritz
10 The Simplicity Survival Handbook by Bill Jensen
11 Cut to the Chase by Stuart Levine
12 The Unwritten Laws of Business by W.J. King
13 Making Things Happen by Scott Berkun
14 Results Without Authority by Tom Kendrick

Psychology & Communication

15 How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie
16 Crucial Conversations by Kerry Patterson, Joseph Grenny, Ron McMillan, and Al Switzler
17 On Writing Well by William Zinsser
18 Presentation Zen by Garr Reynolds
19 Made to Stick by Chip and Dan Heath
20 Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion by Robert B. Cialdini
21 Sources of Power: How People Make Decisions by Gary Klein
22 Secrets of Consulting by Gerald M. Weinberg
23 Deep Survival by Laurence Gonzales

Design & Production

24 Product Design and Development by Karl Ulrich and Steven Eppinger
25 The Design of Everyday Things by Donald Norman
26 Universal Principles of Design by William Lidwell, Kritina Holden, and Jill Butler
27 Getting Real by 37signals
28 The Goal by Eliyahu Goldratt
29 Lean Thinking by James Womack and Daniel Jones

Marketing, Sales, & Negotiation

30 All Marketers Are Liars by Seth Godin
31 Indispensable by Joe Calloway
32 Getting Everything You Can Out of All You've Got by Jay Abraham
33 The Sales Bible by Jeffrey Gitomer
34 The Ultimate Sales Machine by Chet Holmes
35 SPIN Selling by Neil Rackham
36 Bargaining For Advantage by G. Richard Shell
37 3-D Negotiation by David A. Lax and James K. Sebenius

Entrepreneurship

38 The New Business Road Test by John Mullins
39 Bankable Business Plans by Edward Rogoff
40 Ready, Fire, Aim by Michael Masterson
41 The 4-Hour Workweek by Timothy Ferriss
42 The Art of the Start by Guy Kawasaki
43 How to Make Millions with Your Ideas by Dan Kennedy
44 Getting Started in Consulting by Alan Weiss

Management & Leadership

45 First, Break All The Rules by Marcus Buckingham & Curt Coffman
46 12: The Elements of Great Managing by Rodd Wagner & James Harter
47 What Got You Here Won't Get You There by Marshall Goldsmith
48 Growing Great Employees by Erika Andersen
49 Hiring Smart by Pierre Mornell
50 Judgment by Noel Tichy & Warren Bennis
51 The New Leader's 100-Day Action Plan by George Bradt, Jayme Check, & Jorge Pedraza
52 The Halo Effect by Phil Rosenzweig
53 The Essential Drucker by Peter F. Drucker
54 Ethics for the Real World Ronald Howard & Clinton Korver

Strategy & Innovation

55 Purpose: The Starting Point of Great Companies by Nikos Mourkogiannis
56 Competitive Strategy by Michael Porter
57 Blue Ocean Strategy by W. Chan Kim and Renée Mauborgne
58 Seeing What's Next by Clayton M. Christensen, Erik A. Roth, Scott D. Anthony
59 Learning from the Future by Liam Fahey & Robert Randall
60 Innovation and Entrepreneurship by Peter F. Drucker
61 Myths of Innovation by Scott Berkun
62 Green to Gold by Daniel Esty & Andrew Winston

Finance & Analysis

63 Essentials of Accounting (9th Edition) by Robert N. Anthony and Leslie K. Breitner
64 The McGraw-Hill 36-Hour Course in Finance by Robert A. Cooke
65 How to Read a Financial Report by John A. Tracy
66 Turning Numbers Into Knowledge by Jonathan Koomey
67 Show Me The Numbers by Stephen Few
68 Marketing Metrics by Paul W. Farris, Neil T. Bendle, Phillip E. Pfeifer, and David J. Reibstein
69 Web Analytics: An Hour a Day by Avinash Kaushik
70 The 80/20 Principle by Richard Koch
71 How to Lie with Statistics by Darrell Huff

Personal Finance

72 Your Money or Your Life by Joel Dominguez & Vicki Robin
73 The Millionaire Next Door by Thomas Stanley & William Danko
74 The Lazy Person's Guide to Investing by Paul Farrell
75 The Boglehead's Guide to Investing by Taylor Larimore et al
76 Work Less, Live More by Bob Clyatt
77 It's Not About The Money by Brent Kessel

SUPPLEMENT 1: Business History

78 Money and Power: The History of Business by Howard Means
79 Brand New by Nancy F. Koehn
80 Founders at Work by Jessica Livingston
81 Citizen Marketers by Ben McConnell & Jackie Huba
82 The Book of Business Wisdom by Peter Krass
83 The Book of Leadership Wisdom by Peter Krass
84 The Book of Management Wisdom by Peter Krass
85 The Book of Entrepreneurs' Wisdom by Peter Krass

SUPPLEMENT 2: Business Reference

86 Business: The Ultimate Resource from Basic Books
87 The Streetwise Small Business Book of Lists edited by Gene Marks
88 Every Manager's Desk Reference from Alpha Books
89 Finance for the Non-Financial Manager by Gene Siciliano
90 The Copywriter's Handbook by Robert Bly
91 Principles of Statistics by M.G. Bulmer
92 Law 101 by Jay M. Feinman
93 2008 Business Reference Guide by Tom West

Conclusion

To quote Josh Kaufman on the Personal MBA Manifesto --

Top MBA programs don't have a monopoly on advanced business knowledge: you can teach yourself everything you need to know to succeed in life and at work. The Personal MBA Recommended Reading List features only the very best business books available, based on thousands of hours of research. So skip b-school and the $100,000 loan: you can get a world-class business education simply by reading these books.

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