It’s that time of the year again where everyone is considering what kind of holiday gift to ask from their spouse, kids, family or friends. Or you might actually be struggling with ideas about what to give to someone, especially if you know that the person is passionate about investing or making money in general.
I struggle with this every year and therefore I decided to share my top 5 of books which I really enjoyed reading over the last 2 years.
In my opinion these are the perfect holiday gift for investors. And remember, not every book needs to be technical and educational like Benjamin Graham’s Intelligent Investor, so I hope that this little inspiration helps you in the upcoming holiday season.
Disclosure: this post contains affiliate links, meaning, at no additional cost to you. However, I will earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase, so that a part of the Amazon’s profit is shared with me. This supports me in paying for the hosting of this website. 🙏.
1️⃣ Shoe Dog: A Memoir by the Creator of Nike
I read this book about a year ago and I really enjoyed it. Phil Knights is the co-founder of Nike and he tells his story about the early days of Nike in a very entertaining manner.
Did you know for instance that Nike started out with importing sneakers from Japan?
And do you for also know where the Swoosh comes from or the impact that Michael Jordan had on their brand in the relatively early days?
All of this is described in the book.
You need to also remember that Nike was founded in a time where the German company Adidas was really dominating the industry. This is actually a nice European link to us 👌
Having said that, I find the growth of Nike a truly tremendous story and Phil Knight has written it in a very entertaining manner.
This is actually the reason why I discussed this book first as a perfect holiday gift for investors.
You can buy it on Amazon 👇
|Amazon Spain||Nunca te pares: Autobiografía del fundador de Nike (or in English)|
|Amazon Netherlands||Shoe dog: het verhaal achter de oprichter van Nike (or in English)|
|Amazon Germany||Shoe Dog: Die offizielle Biografie des NIKE-Gründers (or in English)|
|Amazon United Kingdom||Shoe Dog: A Memoir by the Creator of NIKE|
|Amazon United States||Shoe Dog: A Memoir by the Creator of Nike|
2️⃣ Bad Blood: Secrets and Lies in a Silicon Valley Startup
This book really reads like a thriller. It’s a book written by Wall Street Journal journalist John Carreyrou after he had uncovered almost single handedly the fraud of Theranos by CEO Elizabeth Holmes.
In case you don’t know Theranos yet: it was an uprising Wall Street darling promising to be able to do up to 100 different types of disease analysis from a single blood of drop. It wouldn’t require needles, just a small prick in your finger.
And oh boy, what a scam it was!
They literally could have invented the quote: fake it till you make it
I don’t want to do any further spoiler alerts, but if you are interested in reading about one of the biggest modern frauds and how a very young entrepreneur fooled many well-seasoned investors, then this is definitely a book which deserves a space under your Christmas Tree.
In my opinion it’s a perfect holiday gift for investors who love reading from the thriller genre.
You can buy it on Amazon 👇
|Amazon Spain||Mala sangre: Secretos y mentiras en una StartUp de Silicon Valley (or in English)|
|Amazon Netherlands||Bloed Fraude: hoe een vrouw uit Sillicon Valey de werelend belazerde (or in English)|
|Amazon Germany||Bad Blood: Die wahre Geschichte des größten Betrugs im Silicon Valley (or in English)|
|Amazon United Kingdom||Bad Blood: Secrets and Lies in a Silicon Valley Startup|
|Amazon United States||Bad Blood: Secrets and Lies in a Silicon Valley Startup|
3️⃣ Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future
You might argue that Elon Musk is a bit young to have a biography written about him, but I’m glad that Ashlee Vance wrote it already.
It’s an amazing book which zooms in into his childhood and how he became the person he is today. You will learn more about how his upbringing in South-Africa shaped him in his thinking, but also how he made his first real money with the start-up PayPal.
You will also quickly learn that Elon Musk has always been fascinated by science and space, so it’s no wonder that he started companies like SpaceX and Tesla.
This book gives a very good insight into his personality and it’s not just about praising him. You’ll definitely will also read about his flaws and what it is that people don’t appreciate in him.
He seems to walk a pretty thin line between being called brilliant or crazy.
Buy it on Amazon 👇
|Amazon Spain||Elon Musk: El empresario que anticipa el futuro (or in English)|
|Amazon Netherlands||Elon Musk: hoe de topman van SpaceX en Tesla onze toekomst vormgeeft (or in English)|
|Amazon Germany||Elon Musk: Wie Elon Musk die Welt verändert – Die Biografie (or in English)|
|Amazon United Kingdom||Elon Musk: Inventing the Future: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future|
|Amazon United States||Elon Musk: Inventing the Future: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future|
4️⃣ The Ride of a Lifetime: Lessons Learned from 15 Years as CEO of the Walt Disney Company
This is one of the newest books in the list, because Bob Iger released his own autobiography less than a year ago.
It’s a very easy to read book and it gives a great insight in his thinking throughout his career. You’ll read about his time at ABC in the sports department and what he learnt from some of the most famous news anchors all the way to being the CEO of one of the most creative companies in the world.
What I especially liked about this book was his insight in his learnings and what it means to be a good leader. His leadership style and appetite for risk was one of the main reasons why Disney was able to transform into the powerhouse it is today. In my opinion, a good example is the deal he struck with Steve Jobs to acquire Pixar.
Having said that, if you’re looking for a book to get inspired about what being a great CEO means then this is definitely worth a read. I’m sure that spotting great CEO’s is one of the core competences of being a good investor.
“If you’re in the business of making something, be in the business of making something great” – Bob Iger
Buy it on Amazon 👇
5️⃣ No Rules Rules: Netflix and the Culture of Reinvention
This book got just released back in September this year, so if you want to surprise someone with the latest and greatest, then this book definitely deserves a consideration as a holiday gift for investors.
In my opinion this is actually a must read for everyone who wants to become a better growth investor.
It really gives you a great insight in what it takes to build or reinvent a business which is disrupting an entire industry. The book focuses on the cultural component of Netflix and their culture is an example of why Netflix outcompetes all the others.
For instance, we all can agree that technology is something which you can relatively easily copy. Culture however is what gives most of technology oriented companies a competitive edge over each other.
In this book you will learn more about Reed Hastings’ (CEO) approach by building a culture focused on freedom, responsibilities and ultimate transparency.
I think that it’s a brilliant example and the book reads very easily. It’s inspiring and very insightful if you want to get a good grasp of understanding the cultural component of a company before investing in their stock.
Buy it on Amazon 👇
|Amazon Spain||Aquí no hay reglas: Netflix y la cultura de la reinvención (or in English)|
|Amazon Netherlands||No rules rules: Waarom Netflix zo succesvol is (or in English)|
|Amazon Germany||Keine Regeln: Warum Netflix so erfolgreich ist (or in English)|
|Amazon United Kingdom||No Rules Rules: Netflix and the Culture of Reinvention|
|Amazon United States||No Rules Rules: Netflix and the Culture of Reinvention|
Final thoughts about these books as a holiday gift for investors.
A nice wish-list isn’t it? I read approximately one to two books every month and these are the 5 books which I enjoyed reading most over the last 2 years.
It’s not really about stock picking this time.
The journey of an investor is often a process in which we gradually start to think like a business man. For example, we typically shift our focus from learning the hard stuff (e.g. how to value a company) towards the more softer topics like leadership and culture.
I think that all these 5 books touch the softer part of it in some shape or form, but they are also very entertaining. Hence, they give a unique insight in some of the most successful business men of our generation and therefore I personally think that these are a perfect holiday gift for investors.
What do you think? Do you agree with me?
Last but not least, there are also a few others that I’ve read over the past year which are worth sharing. I will probably share those another time, but they are for instance a bit more industry or topic specific.
So stay tuned!
European Dividend Growth Investor
I’m not a certified financial planner/advisor nor a certified financial analyst nor an economist nor a CPA nor an accountant nor a lawyer. I’m not a finance professional through formal education. I’m a person who believes and takes pride in a sense of freedom, satisfaction, fulfillment and empowerment that I get from being financially competent and being conscious managing my personal money. The contents on this blog are for informational and entertainment purposes only and does not constitute financial, accounting, or legal advice. I can’t promise that the information shared on my blog is appropriate for you or anyone else. By reading this blog, you agree to hold me harmless from any ramifications, financial or otherwise, that occur to you as a result of acting on information provided on this blog.