Books every MBA student needs to read


To have a good understanding of business and management principles, MBA students must develop a habit of reading books. But that doesn’t mean you can learn everything about business by picking up any book. Therefore, you need to choose the right reading material.

To help you in your search, we have listed the best books that every MBA student needs to read. From bestsellers to top rated and recommended for business schools — in this list, you will find all the good stuff!


The Lean Startup: How Today’s Entrepreneurs Use Continuous Innovation to Create Radically Successful Businesses by Eric Ries

You cannot find a better book on entrepreneurship than this one. In this thoroughly researched book, Eric Ries outlined all the essential methodologies for launching new products or companies in the 21st century. He explained everything so that you understand how to adapt to unexpected things that were not in the plan, customer wants, product cycles, etc. He has extensive experience in entrepreneurship and startups and is currently the entrepreneur-in-residence at Harvard Business School.

Recommended by professors from Ivy League Universities, CEOs of leading companies such as General Electric and Facebook


Never Split the Difference: Negotiating as If Your Life Depended on It by Chriss Voss

As an MBA student, you must learn how to become a professional in negotiating tradeoffs and assimilate effective strategies that work in each type of negotiation. This book contains 9 key principles that will ensure you have the right knowledge to gain a competitive advantage in persuading and negotiating. The author of this book, Chris Voss, was the FBI’s lead international kidnapping negotiator.

Recommended by various business magazines, such as Forbes, Business Insider, and Fortune


Blue Ocean Strategy by W. Chan Kim and Renée Mauborgne

This book was bought by a million people and has been translated into almost 40 languages. It includes a marketing theory created by two professors at INSEAD. They explain how to make the right strategic moves and innovate your business instead of fighting the competition. If you are planning to start a business, this book should be your next read.

Recommended by Fast Company (they named it in their Leadership Hall of Fame as one of the most influential books on leadership), Wall Street Journal and BusinessWeek Best Seller


The Hard Thing About Hard Things: Building a Business When There Are No Easy Answers by Ben Horowitz

This book will allow you to be an intern and shadow the CEO and co-founder of a software company, Ben Horowitz. He lets you learn from his mistakes because his business almost collapsed, and then it became extremely successful thanks to his various strategies. The book also gives an honest account of what you will encounter after graduating from college and entering the business world.

Recommended by Larry Page (Google), Peter Thiel (PayPal), Mark Zuckerberg (Facebook), Stanford & Wharton’s Business School MBA Reading List


Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion by Robert B. Cialdini

This is another best-selling book highly recommended for MBA students. Persuasion is an art, and one of the key factors in any business is persuading people. Therefore, every MBA student has to learn this. The book outlines the 6 main principles of influence: commitment and consistency, reciprocity, social proof, liking, scarcity and authority.

Recommended by Journal of Marketing Research (“For marketers, this book is among the most important books written in the last ten years”), Best Sellers Magazine (“This book will strike chords deep in the hearts and psyches of all of us”)


The world is changing, and each day brings new challenges and opportunities in the business world. It is best to be familiar with all the business aspects, not just the textbooks. We hope that these books will guide you through every step of your business journey.