21 Business Books to Help You Tackle 2021

2020 was a challenge, but 2021 is when the hard work starts. Extreme effort will be required to recover from financial challenges and digital transformation, all while coping with stress, anxiety and other pandemic-induced mental health challenges. It will take a concentrated effort to stay inspired and motivated. On top of that, you’ll be consuming knowledge like you never have before, as you navigate the perpetual learning curve that comes with all things digital.

Books are the best place to start any journey into the unknown. They provide a solid foundation of understanding for further learning on any topic. Having reliable information under your belt allows you to better judge the validity of additional information you find elsewhere, like the internet or online courses. They also guide us from beginning to end, so we aren’t trying to understand something based on bits and pieces we find online.

21 Business Books to Help You Tackle 2021

With the digital world in a constant state of evolution, it’s important to access new, relevant information as quickly as possible. For that reason, some of the following books have not yet been released, but will become available in 2021 and can be preordered. Others on the list are relevant to today’s business world and the trying times we find ourselves in, as we head into the new year.

This list was compiled from publisher & author submissions, as well as books we picked up ourselves. If you would like to submit a business book for future consideration, please send an email to business{at}canadiansinternet.com.

Just click the title or picture of the book to find it online in Canada!

Post Corona - From Crisis to Opportunity

1. Post Corona: From Crisis to Opportunity by Scott Galloway
Everyone could use an insightful, urgent analysis of who stands to win and who’s at risk to lose in a post-pandemic world. Author Scott Galloway explains the pandemic has not been a change agent, so much as an accelerant of trends already well underway. Explore the crisis, changes, trends and resulting opportunities of a post-pandemic world.


2. TransformAble: How to Perform Death-defying Feats of Business Transformation by Angie Tuglus
Transforming your business under pressure is not the best way to do it, but it’s a position many entrepreneurs and leaders have found themselves in. Business transformation expert, Angie Tuglus, has decades of experience leading cross-function change and innovation initiatives at start-ups, Fortune 10 companies, and government agencies. She follows a five-phase framework for transforming high-level, visionary concepts into sustainable operating realities. Her guidance helps readers identify and avoid common pitfalls, while building engaging narratives to both keep the transformation on course and bring key players onboard. Available to preorder for delivery in May, 2020.

Website Optimization

3. E-Commerce Website Optimization: Why 95% of Your Website Visitors Don’t Buy, and What You Can Do About It by Dan Croxen-John and Johann van Tonder
As Canadian businesses build and expand their online presence, they quickly realize that’s only the beginning of having a thriving online business. Traffic to your website accomplishes nothing on it’s own. Converting that traffic into sales is the ultimate goal. This guide focuses on techniques and tools to increase the number of buyers, how much they spend and how often they return to buy more.

Forever Transaction

4. The Forever Transaction: How to Build a Subscription Model So Compelling, Your Customers Will Never Want to Leave by Robbie Kellman Baxter
Canadians have proven to be big fans of product subscriptions, to a point that many companies are radically changing their business models to offer them. This book promises to provide the inspiration, tools and insight you need to build and execute an unbeatable subscription business model. Available to preorder for delivery in April, 2020.

Rethinking Competitive Advantage

5. Rethinking Competitive Advantage: New Rules for the Digital Age by Ram Charan
Many businesses will be tackling an entirely different sales environment as they begin to offer their products or services online. It may appear like it’s impossible to compete with digital giants, but you can do it if you redefine competitive advantage for the digital-first era. This book teaches you how to create an ecosystem with third-party partners to revolutionize and personalize the customer experience. Additionally, you’ll learn how to empower teams to build a “social engine” that drives constant innovation, fast execution, and customer satisfaction.

Go Live

6. Go Live!: Turn Virtual Connections into Paying Customers by Jeffrey Gitomer
Written specifically for a post-pandemic sales audience, this book delivers results for anyone who has to generate online sales. Learn how to use tools like Facebook Live and podcasting to drive sales and connect with your customers from anywhere.

7. Choose Your Customer: How to Compete Against the Digital Giants and Thrive by Jonathan L. S. Byrnes
You already know you should be online, but how do you compete in a global environment full of huge competitors? Two top specialists in profitable growth and innovative customer-supplier relationships show companies of all sizes how to compete with the tech giants, by choosing and providing peerless value to the right customers. Available to preorder for delivery in May, 2021, image coming soon.

Amazon Jungle

8. The Amazon Jungle: The Truth About Amazon, The Seller’s Survival Guide for Thriving on the World’s Most Perilous E-Commerce Marketplace by Jason R. Boyce and Rick Cesari
Learn how to choose a winning product, have it made, create a winning brand and sell on Amazon. Insider secrets will allow you to survive and thrive in the world’s most competitive marketplace.

Working Backwards

9. Working Backwards: Insights, Stories, and Secrets from Inside Amazon by Colin Bryar and Bill Carr
Do you ever wish you could go back in time and watch a massive company grow from its early days? Amazon executive insiders, Colin Bryar and Bill Carr, offer the next best thing in this book. Having joined Amazon in the late nineties, they provide unprecedented access to the Amazon way as it was refined, articulated, and proven to be repeatable, scalable, and adaptable. Then, they show you how to use the same principles in your own business, through a set of well-defined, rigorously-executed practices.

The Practice - Shipping Creative Work

10. The Practice: Shipping Creative Work by Seth Godin
Writers, artists and entrepreneurs understand the need to be creative, but that doesn’t mean it’s easy. Seth Godin will help you create work you’re proud of and find the courage to share it.

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People Anniversary Edition

11. The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People: 30th Anniversary Edition by Stephen R. Covey
I’ve been studying business for a long time. Just HOW long became all too apparent when I saw there was a 30th anniversary edition of The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. I bought a first edition of this book, way back when it was brand new in 1991. Most telling is the fact that I still have that copy. Thirty years and four provinces later, it’s the oldest business book on my shelf.

Sean Covey is the son of Dr. Stephen R. Covey, author of The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. He has brought the wisdom of his father into today’s business world, in this updated version of the timeless classic. As leaders of all kinds shift gears to get through the pandemic and recover from it, these grounding habits will serve them well.

The product line has expanded to include:

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People Card Deck by Dr. Stephen R. Covey, containing 52 cards to add weekly inspiration and challenges.

7 Habits on the Go: Timeless Wisdom for a Rapidly Changing World by Sean Covey, is a compact adaptation of The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People that can prove to be inspirational, even in chaotic times.

Management Mess to Leadership Success

12. Management Mess to Leadership Success: 30 Challenges to Become the Leader You Would Follow by Scott Jeffrey Miller
Leading your company through unknown and unexpected challenges is bound to lead to missteps. Scott Jeffrey Miller was a student and personal friend of Stephen R. Covey, and is now Executive Vice President of Thought Leadership at Franklin-Covey. He shares several “messy” management experiences on his two-decade journey to leadership success. Follow his leadership challenges to change the way you manage yourself, lead others and produce results.

The Tao of Influence

13. The Tao of Influence: Ancient Wisdom for Modern Leaders and Entrepreneurs by Karen McGregor
Tough times leave many people yearning to make an impact. The Tao of Influence is a business book that speaks ancient wisdom to the modern-day leader, while providing practical and tangible actions that lead to high levels of sustainable influence and positive power. Follow the roadmap to create lasting change and gain influence.

How to be Heard

14. How to be Heard: Secrets for Powerful Speaking and Listening by Julian Treasure
We learned many things about communication in 2020, mostly how bad we are at it when face-to-face communication isn’t available. This book will teach you how to speak so that people listen – and how to listen so that people feel heard. The exercises will help you develop simple habits that can transform your communication skills, the quality of your relationships and your impact in the world.

Finance Secrets of Billion Dollar Entrepreneurs

15. Finance Secrets of Billion-Dollar Entrepreneurs: Venture Finance Without Venture Capital by Dileep Rao
Money is going to be tough to come by for many businesses over the next few years, and that can lead to bad VC decisions. The Finance Secrets of Billion-Dollar Entrepreneurs guides you to success through the interviews and analysis of billion-dollar entrepreneurs. Learn how to use expertise in smart finance instead of venture capital, to start and build a business that is financially sustainable.

Bitcoins and Blockchains

16. The Basics of Bitcoins and Blockchains: An Introduction to Cryptocurrencies and the Technology that Powers Them by Antony Lewis
Ready or not, cryptocurrencies are a part of the digital world and it’s creeping into various corners of online business on a global scale. This book offers a clear, accessible guide to new currency and the technology that powers it. Gain working knowledge of the history of Bitcoin, the Bitcoin blockchain, and Bitcoin buying, selling, and mining. Learn about the risks and mitigations and how to identify scams, as well as cryptocurrency exchanges, digital wallets, and regulations.


17. Marketing Rebellion: The Most Human Company Wins by Mark Schaefer
As Canadian businesses enter the digital marketing world in record numbers, they’re finding themselves in a consumer environment that moves at breakneck speeds through unfamiliar territory. Mark Schaefer provides an achievable and realistic framework to help you stay ahead of the curve, by re-imagining marketing in a world where hyper-empowered consumers drive the business results. This book focuses on building your business upon human impressions instead of advertising impressions. You’ll be guided step-by-step through an immediate course-correction to maximize growth, and gain knowledge through new research, singular insights, and inspiring case studies.

Social Media Marketing

18. Social Media Marketing: Leverage the Power of the Internet to Grow Your Business by K. Connors
Knowing social media is a critical part of today’s marketing toolbox is one thing, but how to use it to grow your business is quite another. Social Media Marketing is here to teach you everything from choosing the best platforms for your business to mastering content writing & optimization.

Will Post for Profit

19. Will Post for Profit: How Brands and Influencers Are Cashing In on Social Media by Justin Blaney D.M. and Kate Fleming
This book will guide both influencers and brands through the rapidly-evolving landscape of influencer marketing, the most effective and budget-friendly form of online marketing. Learn about platform selection, legal compliance, ethics, audience growth, designing successful campaigns, finding brands or influencers to work with, contracts, key performance indicators (KPIs), and more. Successful brands and influencers reveal their top secrets to success and biggest mistakes to avoid.

Reinvention by Arlene Dickinson

20. Reinvention: Changing Your Life, Your Career, Your Future by Arlene Dickinson
Many of us are rebuilding after the pandemic left our business and life in shambles. Arlene Dickinson had no idea how timely her advice would be when she wrote this book, but it’s a personal pandemic recovery plan nontheless. Use her step-by-step plan for reinvention to figure out where you are, and what you have to do to get where you want to be.

The Burger King

21. The Burger King: A Whopper of a Story on Life and leadership by Jim McLamore
Staying positive and motivated is especially tough right now. A good rags-to-riches story can inspire battle-weary entrepreneurs so they can live to fight another day. Jim McLamore, Co-founder and first CEO of Burger King, shares his story of entrepreneurship in this instructive and inspiring tale.

Are any of these business books on your reading list for 2021? Do you have others to recommend? Please share in the comments below or join us in the Online Business Canada Facebook group!

✔ You may also be interested in reading:
How to Bring Your Canadian Small Business Online
Checklist: How to Start an Online Store (eCommerce Business) in Canada
How to Start Any Online Business With WordPress

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Digital Business & Marketing Manager at Online Business Canada | Website | + posts

Melody McKinnon's formal education is in business management, which she enhanced with more than 60 certifications revolving around business, marketing, health, general sciences and writing. In 25 years of working online, she has owned or managed both educational and ecommerce websites. Her book, 7 Recession Proof Online Businesses to Start From Home, is available on Amazon.

Melody has worked with many businesses & brands in a multitude of capacities. She can often be found on CanadiansInternet.com, CanadianFamily.net and AllNaturalPetCare.com, as well as other quality digital publications. Her content has earned reference links from highly-respected websites, magazines and university textbooks.

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