When you think about the best business books of the decade, there are certainly many of them to consider, but these are not all books on economics or finances. Indeed, if you look at the list of these books, you’ll find a wide selection of subject matter and topics, including:
- Big companies such as Amazon, ExxonMobile, Walmart, and Microsoft
- Economics and big money
- Important leaders such as Jeff Bezos, Steve Jobs, Alan Greenspan, Mark Zuckerberg, and Warren Buffett
- Historical issues such as the world wars and how it affects the global economy
- Controversial issues such as guns, capitalism, corporate greed, and replacing cash with gold
Indeed, when you review the list of business books and the books determined to be the best business books of any given year or decade, you’ll notice a variety of topics relevant to today’s world, so these books are not just for “business people” but for anyone interested in what makes our world operate as it does. After all, “business” issues don’t just affect entrepreneurs or managers but everyone else as well, so everyone should be able to find a book they’ll enjoy reading.
How it Is Determined
Each year, Financial Times has a contest of the best business books, and they have a “long” list and a “short” list of possibilities. A panel of judges determines the winner, and the winner also receives a cash reward in the end. You can click here to take a look at some of the books that have won past awards. This is indeed a very impressive list of books and topics covered in those books. They range from books that are intended to be educational to those that are simply amusing. Yet, they all have one thing in common: they address issues important to today’s readers, issues that range from empowering women to trade wars and everything else.
In fact, while many of these “business” books are financial or Wall Street-related in nature, many others have to do with social issues, which are always directly related to economic issues in one form or another. Even people who believe they are not really interested in anything related to business should look at the list of books on this list from one year to the next. Their variety means there is truly something for everyone, and if you’re curious about some of the best books that have come out in the past decade, keep reading.
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The Man Who Knew by Sebastian Mallaby
Subtitled, The Life and Times of Alan Greenspan, this is the story of a truly remarkable businessman and financial expert. It is a biography and business book at the same time, teaching the reader not only about Greenspan himself but also about the economic and political climate of the past 30 plus years. Although the book describes both his personal and professional life, it will likely be his professional life you’re most interested in, mostly because his story has affected all of our lives in some way in the past several decades. You’ll learn a lot about both Greenspan and the business world in general by reading this book.
When Alan Greenspan retired in 2006, he wrote a memoir that sold millions of copies worldwide. His professional life and career were fascinating, to say the least, and there is nothing wrong in stating that his decisions and advice to the White House and the country affected us all, even if only in a small way. Published in 2017, the book is available in both paperback and as an e-book, and Mallaby makes it easy to read from the first page to the last. The book is available for $15.99 and is available on Amazon.
Bad Blood by John Carreyrou
This book is subtitled Secrets and Lies in a Silicon Valley Startup, and it tells the story of Theranos, which began in 2014 and sold a medical device that claimed to provide an array of medical tests using only one drop of blood. The company was started by a brilliant Stanford dropout named Elizabeth Holmes in 2014, and many people considered her to be the next Steve Jobs. Although the company started off selling tons of these devices, the excitement didn’t last long because the device proved faulty, and as a result, people were misdiagnosed. Many even received unnecessary treatments.
As things started closing in on her, Holmes made things worse by trying to silence those around her and preventing them from talking to anyone. This book tells what can go wrong when greed and the love of money take over. The book is interesting and a real eye-opener, and it is available in e-book and paperback form; and even if you’ve never heard of this company, it is a fascinating read. The paperback sells for only $11.99, and this is a great book for people who love real-life stories of corruption and, of course, money.
Flash Crash by Liam Vaughan
This is the story of a man named Navinder Singh Sarao, who crashed the stock market from his childhood bedroom in May of 2010. Within minutes, trillions of dollars of valuation were lost, and it was called the fastest drop in market history. Nav was from London and was considered a brilliant trader, and he was actually working out of his bedroom when the Feds finally caught up with him in 2015. This book is the true story of his rise and fall, and every detail told brilliantly by Liam Vaughan in a way that will give you the details of how this was allowed to happen and the ensuing results.
Flash Crash, named this because this is what the incident was known as at the time, is available in hardcover, paperback, and e-book form and is a must-read for anyone who enjoys reading about what can happen when brilliance and greed collide. A person’s talent and smarts are used not for good but selfish reasons. It is a fascinating read, even for people who know nothing about the stock market. This story of a trading savant and the global manhunt that resulted after the market crash is fascinating, to say the least, and will keep you interested to the very end.
The Driver in the Driverless Car by Vivek Wadhwa and Alex Salkever
If you’ve ever wondered how today’s technological advances will affect our future, this is the book for you. The book challenges readers to ask themselves three questions when evaluating any advancement in technology, and they are: (1) Does it have the potential to benefit everyone equally? (2) What are its risks and rewards? (3) Does it promote autonomy or dependence? The authors take a look at many of the inventions of the past and apply these questions to them, then demonstrate why many advances may sound good on the surface, but their long-term implications may not be something we’re ready for.
The authors claim that we are responsible for the future of humanity in many ways, based on the decisions we make today when it comes to technological advances. Whether we’re talking about driverless cars, drones, cloning, or artificial intelligence, advancements in technology can be used for good or bad, and the authors merely want people to think long and hard before they form an opinion on any of the advancements of today. The book is available in hardcover, paperback, and e-book form. It forces people to consider their opinions carefully before acting on them regarding any technological breakthrough.
The Rise and Fall of American Growth by Robert J. Gordon
Ever since the Civil War, the U.S. standard of living has gone up and down, and the author attempts to explain how and why this is so. He looks at certain things that he considers detriments to our growth, which he considers rising inequality, an ageing population, stagnating education, and the rising debt of both college students and the federal government. He claims that we have to find new solutions if we want our economy to go up and not down. The book is thoughtful and insightful, and he questions the thought that many people have that says the United States will not continue to grow and thrive if we don’t do something about it.
Gordon’s book is available in hardcover, paperback, and e-book form and is essentially an economic history lesson that starts from the U.S. Civil War and goes through today. He insists that unless the country does something soon, the United States may be at the end of its period of economic growth. The book will make people think about the growth of productivity in the country, which he claims has come to a halt, but he also offers solutions and suggestions on how we can change that if we really want to. This is the perfect book for those interested in economics and a booming economy to add to your collection.
From books about companies such as Amazon or Walmart to economics and big money and to controversial issues historical issues and big personalities, you should be able to find some good reads on this list.