Published by MBA Skool Team, Last Updated: July 05, 2012
Books are an integral part of a student's life. There are some books which are compulsory to read or rather study but there are others which one read out of interest and to learn new things and develop an outlook.
Here is a list of top books which an MBA student or a graduate should read.
If you have some book in your mind which should be on this list, mail us on firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com.
Freakonomics by Steven Levitt & Stephen J. Dubner.
The book applies principles of economics to diverse subjects which are generally not covered by traditional books on economics. It explores the hidden side of everything and written with a belief that if right questions are asked nothing is impenetrable in this world.
Stay hungary stay foolish by Rashmi Bansal
Stay Hungry Stay Foolish is the collection of 25 stories of IIM Ahmedabad graduates who took the entrepreneurial plunge leaving their plum jobs. This book will not only act as an inspiration for others desirous of starting their own enterprises, but is also a valuable guidance and reference for those who are wary of treading this path.
Intelligent Investor by Benjamin Graham
This book is must read for all the finance students. Its main objective in its philosophy of "value investing" is to protect the investor against the areas of possible error and to develop policies which are rational.
The Winning Way – Learning’s from the sport for managers by harsha and Anita bhogle
The book is about how valuable business lessons of winning, loosing, combating etc. can be derived from sports. It tells you about what make a winning team, good leadership and why some teams continue to perform well while others decline with time.
Connect the dots by Rashmi Bansal
The book covers 20 entrepreneurs who carved a niche for themselves in the different areas of business but without the much coveted MBA degree. The book is inspiration for the readers as it exemplifies the unique spirit of these entrepreneurs which drove them to the success.
Rich Dad Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki
Book stresses the ownership of high value assets rather being an employee. The book highlights attitude of two men (Kiyosaki’s rich dad and his poor dad) towards money & work and how it influences key decisions in Kiyosaki’s life. Some of topics covered in this book are value of financial intelligence, importance of investing and entrepreneurship, difference between asset and liabilities etc.
Simply Fly – A Deccan Odyssey by Captain Gopinath
The book is the story of common man’s trials and travails; struggles and triumphs; successes and failures. It is a story of how a village boy rises from riding a bullock cart to owning an airline. It is an interesting read and an inspiring one.
Fooled By Randomness by Nassim Nicholas Taleb
The book changes the way we perceive business and the world. It teaches how to recognize randomness. Have you ever heard something like, "The market was up 100 points today, 0.14%, on lower oil prices"? Or have you ever watched the price of your favorite stock drop by 1.5% and wondered why, especially when there wasn't a single piece of news mentioning that company today? If so, then you or someone has been fooled by randomness. Don't worry, though. It's perfectly natural. In his book, author discusses why randomness occurs and what we can do about it.
Positioning: Battle for your Mind by Al Ries and Jack Trout
Its one of those books, you can't afford to miss as a MBA student. This was the book which introduced the term Positioning and the whole concept related to it. Al Ries and Jack Trout very beautifully explain the concepts. Must Read.
Steve Jobs: The Exclusive Biography by Walter Isaacson
book is a biography of Steve Jobs who revolutionized the way people saw technology. This is a book that's mainly about innovation. Walter Isaacson has written a riveting story of the roller-coaster life and intense personality of a creative entrepreneur whose passion for perfection and ferocious drive revolutionized six industries: personal computers, animated movies, music, phones, tablet computing, and digital publishing.
Who Says Elephants Can't Dance? Inside IBM's Historic Turnaround by Louis Gerstner Jr.
IBM was one of the most profitable companies but by 1993, the company was on its way to extinction, a victim of its lumbering size, an insular corporate culture and fast changing PC industry. The book is how Lou Gerstner transforms IBM and brings back IBM from the brink of bankruptcy. The book gives insight into management, leadership, strategy, public relations etc.
The Habit of Winning by Prakash Iyer and R Gopalakrishnan
In this book author tries to identify that special quality that makes the winner. With the help of stories of personalities like Sachin Tendulkar, Mahatma Gandhi, Randy Pauch, author has highlighted various attributes that makes the person winner. The book also acknowledges the fact that there is a lot that you do not learn at management school. It is the challenge of everyday living that sometimes gives you the attributes that make you a winner.
The Goal by Dr. Eliyahu M. Goldratt
This book is must read for an operations student. This book focuses on the Theory of Constraints, bottlenecks and how to alleviate them, and applications of these concepts in real life.
Guerilla Marketing by Jay Conrad Levinson
The author gave the world the concept of Guerilla Marketing. The term has since entered the popular vocabulary and marketing textbooks. Levinson argued for using brains over brawn. Don't hang a banner to advertise a sale; give away products on the street. Don't place expensive ads; pull a PR stunt for free publicity. This strategy has helped so many businesses.
Who Moved my Cheese by Dr. Spencer Johnson
With the help of tale of four characters who live in a maze (representative of environment) that include two mice named Sniff and Scurry, who do whatever it takes to get their daily sustenance in the form of cheese (representative of happiness and success). The book teaches readers how to anticipate change, adapt to it, and enjoy it as well.
Barbarians at the Gate: The Fall of RJR Nabisco by Burrough and John Helyar
This is one of the best case studies on LBO wars fought in 1980s on Wall Street. It is a must read books for people y interested in the working of businesses, takeovers, and how the financial operations at the top are conducted. "Barbarians at the Gate" has been called one of the most influential business books of all time.
The Fifth Discipline: The Art and Practice of the Learning Organization by Peter Senge
The book describes how companies can rid themselves of the learning “disabilities” that threaten their productivity and success by adopting the strategies of learning organizations. In this book author proposes the “systems thinking” method to help a corporation to become a “learning organization”.
The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make A Big Difference by Malcolm Gladwell
The author reasons out the similarities between epidemics and the sociological changes that affect the human lives. The term ‘tipping point’ refers to a certain point of time during an epidemic, after which the virus begins to spread at a much higher rate. The author tries to explain how ideas, messages, and products spread like viruses do.
Black Swan: The Impact Of The Highly Improbable by Nassim Nicholas Taleb
A black swan is an event which is highly improbable and unpredictable, for example success of Google, attacks on 9/11. Author argues why people ignore phenomenon of Black swan until it occurs. It is because we brought up in the environment which is so simple, non rewarding for people who can imagine impossible. The Black Swan will change the way you look at the world.
Go Kiss The World: Life Lessions For The Young Professional by Subroto Bagchi
Go kiss the world were the last words of mother of Subroto Bagchi which became the principles of his life. From the humble beginnings he went on to become founder of Mindtree. Through personal anecdotes and simple words of wisdom, Subroto Bagchi brings to the young professional lessons in working and living and how ordinary people can lead extraordinary life. The book urges the young people from small towns to recognize their inner strength and realize their dreams.
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