By Natalie MacNeil (Co-Founder, YEC Women) The following answers are provided by YEC Women. Co-Founded by Natalie MacNeil and Scott Gerber, YEC Women is an initiative of the Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC), an invite-only nonprofit organization comprised of the country’s most promising young entrepreneurs.
The YEC promotes entrepreneurship as a solution to youth unemployment and underemployment and provides its members with access to tools, mentorship, and resources that support each stage of a business’s development and growth.
Fine-Tune Your Intuition With "Steering by Starlight"
"Although not strictly a business book, "Steering by Starlight" introduced me to many concepts that guide the way I run my business. Martha Beck, a Harvard Ph.D. turned life coach magnate (regularly called upon by Oprah), describes how to follow your gut and intuition more closely. Terms like "shackles on" and "shackles off" have helped me better define what projects and clients I take on." -- Jenny Blake (Author, Life After College)
Learn How to Become "The Boss of You"
"While written for women, the lessons in Emira Mears and Lauren Bacon's "The Boss of You" apply to anyone who's just starting out. With tips on figuring out your startup costs, making your business legit, good customer service, and more, this book is a solid how-to on getting it right the first time." -- Steph Auteri (Founder, Word Nerd Pro)
"Getting Past No"
"I don't normally think of the books I read in terms of what is better for a female entrepreneur. But I recommend picking up every book you can on negotiation, particularly "Getting Past No" by William Ury. It's not just a question of how women negotiate, but how people perceive women negotiating." -- Thursday Bram (Principal, Hyper Modern Consulting)
"Double Double" Your Business Before you Start
"One of my favorite business books is "Double Double" by Cameron Herold. Herold does a great job applying "big business" concepts to small businesses just getting started. His guidance on hiring has allowed me to go from a one-woman show to quickly building a thriving, productive team. " -- Laura Roeder (Founder, LKR)
"Pitch Like a Girl"
"This book has made me more effective at sales and marketing. Women often have unique challenges around pitching and selling ourselves. This book is sympathetic yet inspiring in its clear techniques for communicating confidently and persuasively." -- Lisa Nicole Bell (CEO, Inspired Life Media Group)
"Play Like a Man, Win Like a Woman"
"This book is a helpful guide to understanding the "rules" of the business game, whether you're a female entrepreneur or an employee. I like that Gail Evans clearly lays out the male perspective on succeeding in business but then gives women permission to choose whether they follow all of the rules." -- Elizabeth Saunders (Founder & CEO, Real Life E)
"Women Count: A Guide To Changing The World"
"Susan Butler is my hero. Her book, "Women Count: A Guide to Changing the World," will inspire you to start a business that matters. One that ensures more women entrepreneurs play a bigger game and build businesses worthy of changing the lives of thousands of others. Even if you're just starting out the role models in this book will empower you. Check out her other book "Become the CEO of You" too." -- Natalie Sisson (Co-Founder, Suitcase Entrepreneur)
"Never Eat Alone"
"A lot of success for new entrepreneurs comes down to connections. Keith Ferrazzi knows that the secret to finding success in any venture is reaching out to other people. In this book, he shares his insights and specific steps for gaining and leveraging relationships -- a vital thing to learn for any entrepreneur." -- Heather R. Huhman (Founder & President, Come Recommended)
Editor’s note: Got a question for our guest blogger? Leave a message in the comments below. About the guest blogger: Natalie MacNeil is an Emmy Award winning Producer at the digital media company she co-founded, Imaginarius. She passionately works to get more women into business in her role as Co-Founder of YEC Women with Scott Gerber and through her blog, She Takes on the World. Natalie is frequently quoted and interviewed in the media discussing entrepreneurship, personal branding for women, and new media. Follow her on Twitter at @nataliemacneil.