Behind every great leader is a great book. Though that may not be the saying, if you ask any great leader or speaker what their favorite and most influential book was for them you’ll see their eyes light up. The following books are some of the most common answers you’ll get.

How To Win Friends And Influence People by Dale Carnegie

Arguably the first and most important leadership, business and networking book. How To Win Friends And Influence People was published in 1936 and started the self-help industry. The book has sold more than 15 million copies worldwide. Though much of the advice may seem simple today, Carnegie gives a story behind every rule to illustrate its importance.

Think And Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill

Ride the subway in New York and among the characters you’ll see someone reading Think And Grow Rich. It has earned its reputation as the most important book on the hyper-wealthy’s book shelf. By interviewing millionaires in the 1930’s, Hill captures the common mindset of the successful and lays it out for his readers.

4-Hour Work Week by Tim Ferris

The global economy is still new and has afforded us opportunities our ancestors never had. From this book author Tim Ferris has amassed a cult like following of self-helpers with a quality work-life balance.

Art of War by Sun Tzu

The Art Of War is a classic that is not limited to business, inspiration or self-help. Written before year 0, The Art Of War has been influential in military leadership and strategy in both Eastern and Western countries. For leaders in business it has helped millions strategize effectively.

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen R. Covey

7 Habits of Highly Effective People teaches its readers to be effective business professionals by being ethical. Using some of the techniques from his self-help predecessors Covey puts it all together neatly for his readers.