Finding your next great read can be a thrilling adventure in the vast and enchanting world of literature. Whether you're an avid bookworm, an occasional reader, or just someone seeking a literary escape, the quest for the perfect book is a journey we can all relate to. With countless genres, authors, and timeless classics to choose from, the sheer abundance of options can be overwhelming. To help you out, we have compiled a list of the top 10 best books to read. Whether you're seeking an unforgettable story to lose yourself in, a source of inspiration, or a glimpse into a new perspective, our list has something special in store for you.Without further ado, let’s get into the list:
The ‘Essential Business Storytelling Handbook' emphasises the crucial role of storytelling in engaging consumers and offers real-world examples to illustrate effective narrative strategies.
The book emphasises the importance of selecting the right social media platforms for brand promotion, targeting the appropriate audience and understanding where they are most active.
It highlights the need for brevity in content in the age of short attention spans.
The book underscores the value of consistency in storytelling. For example, the book discusses the Amul mascot's remarkable storytelling legacy.
The book suggests that attaching micro-stories to data points can enhance engagement.
It mentions the T Brand Studio of The New York Times as a prime example of leveraging paid content effectively.
The book also encourages amplifying the voices of women in storytelling.
This book is one of the best books to read if you are aiming to enhance your storytelling skills, captivate an audience as a CEO, or improve your writing abilities. It is a comprehensive guide, offering standalone chapters on storytelling techniques, complete with practical exercises.Listen to More Book Reviews: From the Bookshelves of Forbes India
2. Beyond Possible
Author: Nirmal Puja
Price: Rs 650
Year of publication: 2020
Coming next in our list of the top 10 best books to read is the book 'Beyond Possible,' Nirmal Puja gives a gripping account of how he conquered all the world's 8,000-metre 'death zone' peaks within just seven months.
After a stint in the armed forces, Nirmal decided to pursue his love for mountaineering as a full-time endeavour. His vision was to push the boundaries of human capability, elevate the names of Nepalese climbers on the global stage, and ignite awareness regarding global warming.
He conquered all 14 of the world's highest peaks in six months and six days.
Raising the required capital to fund such an undertaking was a significant hurdle, but people supported him after noting his progress.
Nirmal underscores the importance of pursuing one's passions with unwavering dedication and cultivating a positive mindset.
Despite the inherent danger, he views mountaineering as a relentless pursuit of self-improvement.
He champions sustainable mountaineering and urges fellow mountaineers to raise awareness about global warming.
If you are looking for a dose of inspiration to chase your dreams (not just mountaineering, it can be anything at all) and cross hurdles that seem unscalable today, this book might be just the thing for you.
3. Xiaomi: How a Startup Disrupted the Market and Created a Cult Following
Author: Jayadevan P.K.
Price: Rs 399
Year of publication: 2021
Xiaomi formally entered the mobile phone manufacturing industry in August 2011. Subsequently, it has risen to become the leading smartphone manufacturer in India, which happens to be the world's second-largest smartphone market. In the book ‘Xiaomi’, Jayadevan chronicles the story of China's smartphone market evolution, with insights drawn from Motorola's involvement. He speaks of how these experiences influenced Chinese entrepreneurs like Lei Jun, the founder of Xiaomi.
Jayadevan’s visit to a buzzing Beijing in 2010 unveiled a landscape where giants like Alibaba and TikTok rapidly gained prominence. He aimed to uncover the blueprint that made these companies successful.
The author talks about the driving force behind Xiaomi- Lei Jun. Lei Jun is a self-professed geek, and his journey into the tech world was marked by a commitment to transparency by building in public. Xiaomi conceived as an internet company, maintains this ethos by involving fans in feature development. Initiatives like 'Orange Friday' underscore the company's commitment to customer satisfaction.
The Indian market witnessed a Xiaomi boom, marked by collaborations with Flipkart and a pioneering move into 4G technology. Tech luminary Hugo Barra, a respected figure in the Android community, facilitated the worldwide expansion.
Xiaomi is among the best books to read for hopeful startup founders. It can help you understand the phenomenal growth of Xiaomi and what goes behind making a startup successful.
4. The Right Choice
Author: Shiv Shivakumar
Price: Rs 399
Year of publication: 2021
Shiv explores the common career dilemmas that individuals may face and gives solutions on how to tackle those.
He highlights how less than 5 percent of graduates from prestigious institutions like IIM (Indian Institutes of Management) ultimately become CEOs. This underscores the notion that a degree from a renowned institute does not guarantee a coveted spot.
The author urges individuals to proactively steer their professional journey rather than waiting until they are pushed to the brink of unhappiness.
The concept of pursuing a second MBA is explored, with the author delving into the motivations behind this decision, such as immigration or addressing stagnation in one's current job.
The book introduces the concept of sabbaticals, a practice initially rooted in academia but increasingly embraced in the corporate world.
The author advises against becoming pigeonholed in a specific industry. Instead, the book emphasises the primacy of individual capabilities over industry expertise.
If you are in a dilemma regarding your career, then "The Right Choice," by Shiv Shivakumar, is one of the best books to read. This book is a must-read for every budding professional, as it will equip you with the knowledge to manage your career.
Author: Tamal Bandyopadhyay
Price: Rs 499
Year of publication: 2020
'Pandemonium' by veteran banking editor Tamal Bandyopadhyay explores the banking crisis in India. He breaks down the nuances of bad loans in India, the key faces involved, and a collection of interviews of all the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) governors on their opinion of the crisis and its reasons.
The book addresses various facets of the crisis, including non-performing assets (NPAs), regulatory oversights, governance, and the impact of fraud on bankers.
Tamal delves into the challenges public sector banks (PSBs) face, such as political interference and perverse incentives.
Tamal's book underscores the need for transparency, proper funding, and a level playing field between state-owned and private enterprises.
It highlights the importance of aligning government and central bank actions to address banking challenges.
In essence, you need to read 'Pandemonium' to understand the corruption within India's banking system. It illustrates how business owners effortlessly exchanged stocks for loans while bank leadership turned a blind eye to safeguard their financial standings until the RBI initiated a battle against the rising non-performing assets.
6. The Victory Project
Authors: Anupam Gupta, Saurabh Mukherjea
Price: Rs 599
Year of publication: 2020
Anupam Gupta and Saurabh Mukherjea discuss the lessons they have collected since the start of their journey. The Victory Project: Six Steps to Peak Potential reveals the habitual changes that will show you the path to success.
The book consolidates key concepts from several influential books like Outliers, The Power of Habit, Deep Work, Focus, and Thinking Fast & Slow, just to name a few.
It explores success formulas, like combining generalisation (Range) and specialisation (10,000-hour rule) to create your unique 'T.'
This book also has interviews from the likes of Harsh Mariwala and Mark Mobius.
The book focuses on three key parts: Solution, Behaviour, and Application.
Simplifying, reducing clutter, and collaboration are key themes. Simplification seems easy, but it involves intricate work. Reducing clutter by detoxing social media and news apps can bring you peace and productivity. Collaboration boosts creativity and confidence.
The Victory Project is one of the best books to read if you relish the self-help genre and want to get a consolidated version of all the best self-help books.
7. In the Plex
Author: Steven Levy
Price: Rs 699
Year of publication: 2011
Steven Levy's "In the Plex: How Google Thinks, Works, and Shapes Our Lives" (2011) offers a captivating glimpse into Google's inner workings and its journey to becoming an internet giant, all without overwhelming technical jargon.
Levy's book covers Google's origins, economic strategies, cultural development, data centres, expansion into new areas, ethical challenges, and involvement with the government.
The book covers Google's unique workplace culture, including the 20% rule, which allows employees to dedicate time to creative pursuits.
Google's data centres, management practices, and hiring processes are also covered. The book delves into Google's expansion and development of products like Gmail. It emphasises Google's mission to make information accessible to all, leading to its shift to a cloud-based environment.
Google is almost everyone’s best friend to the point where the brand name has become synonymous with the phrase ‘search engine’. This book is a must-read if you're interested in Google's inner workings and development as a company.
8. The Economics of Small Things
Author: Dr Sudipta Sarangi
Price: Rs 299
Year of publication: 2020
"The Economics of Small Things" by Dr. Sudipta Sarangi explores the economic rationale behind everyday behaviours and phenomena. It starts by posing relatable questions, such as why the best tea is exported instead of consumed locally in Assam and the curious case of unclaimed last pieces of pizza at social gatherings.
Sarangi talks about the Cobra effect. In British India, officials encountered too many cobras and asked natives to bring killed cobras and take home the money. People started rearing cobras at home, killed them and asked for money. The same thing happened in Vietnam with rats.
Sarangi also talks about how people choose to bargain for free dhaniya from poor sabziwaala but do not bargain in malls. He explains that in malls, there is an established convention, and rules limit people. On the other hand, Sabziwaala exists in the informal sector, where there are simply no rules to follow.
He discusses game theory and makes mention of the game of chicken and how widely relevant it is to today’s world. Reputation is more important than life. He uses this example in the political arena and mentions how politicians don't want to appear weak, so they will also push the country into a war.
Sarangi's ability to convey economic principles without complex equations, coupled with his humour, makes "The Economics of Small Things" one of the best books to read to appreciate the subject of the economy without being bored by it.
9. Making it Big
Author: Binod Chaudhary
Price: Rs 399
Year of publication: 2016
"Making It Big" by Binod Chaudhary chronicles the life of Binod Chaudhary, the chairman of CG Corp Global, Nepal's first billionaire, and the visionary behind Wai Wai Noodles.
Binod has his roots in a Marwari Rajasthani family. His ancestors moved from Rajasthan to Nepal about 40 years ago.
He highlights the role of luck in making it big as he says being at the right place at the right time with the right people is fundamental to massive success.
Binod jokes about earthquakes never leaving his destiny. While he was in Santiago, Chile, he witnessed the world's third-largest earthquake. He highlights how being so close to death changed his priorities and gave him plenty of time to retrospect.
The book offers insights into strategies that elevated Chaudhary's business to new heights.
"Making It Big" is one of the best books to read for aspiring entrepreneurs and ambitious investors. Binod’s journey will surely teach you a thing or two about starting new projects.
10. What it takes
Author: Stephen Schwarzman
Price: Rs 799
Year of publication: 2019
Stephen Schwarzman, Blackstone's billionaire financier and co-founder, shares his entrepreneurial journey in his autobiography.
Stephen talks of when he struggled to raise his first billion dollars in 1986 and recalls mailing 400 of his clients to get the money.
Stephen calls India an excellent market for Blackstone. However, he expresses apprehension about the overall slowing economy and rising inflation and highlights that the banking system is going through a crisis.
Schwarzman candidly admits to errors, such as selling a mortgage securities unit to Larry Fink in 1994, which later became BlackRock, the world's largest asset manager.
He emphasises the importance of going big and making informed decisions.
In our list of the top 10 best books to read, this is yet another must-read for anyone interested in learning more about the dynamics of entrepreneurship.