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9 Recommended Books To Read Before Starting a Bookkeeping Business

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Written by Ben Robinson Position
Book Recommendations for starting a bookkeeping busienss

There was a time in my life when I couldn’t stand the thought of reading. Until about age 20, my idea of a good read involved works by Dr. Seuss. Insert a good pop-up book here and there, and I was content with my reading plan.

Not so anymore. I love to read! It’s how I learn most of what I teach, and this is why I want to share with everyone how helpful reading books can be. So if you’re thinking of starting your own bookkeeping business, here are nine of my recommended books to help you get started.

RELATED: Starting A Bookkeeping Business

In this article:

  1. Your Mindset Is the Most Important Thing to Become Successful
  2. My Recommended Books That Have Been Key to My Success
  3. Best Books to Read If You Want to Start a Business
  4. Other Recommended Books Specific to Building a Bookkeeping Business
  5. Each of the Recommended Books for Starting a Bookkeeping Business Works for You

Recommended Books for Setting Up a Bookkeeping Business


Your Mindset Is the Most Important Thing to Become Successful

I have a lot of students and aspiring business owners who ask me what the most important thing is to be successful. My answer to their question usually shocks them.

Want to know my answer? “Your success is 100% tied to your mindset.”

That’s what I tell them and am telling you. It’s that simple!

Now, it is also important to develop a plan for your business, work that plan, and make changes as necessary. It’s also critical to become a craftsman at your chosen business and provide tremendous value to your clients.

But, all of these plans and values are of no use if you don’t have the right mindset. Your mind is like soil: the best seed and the best nurturing of the crop on bad soil lead to no crops and a skinny farmer!

If your mind is soil, then how do you feed it? The late Zig Ziglar said it best:

“Before you change your thinking, you have to change what goes into your mind.”

So, what are YOU putting into your mind? Are your mental inputs positive?

Do they build you up? I certainly hope so!

My Recommended Books That Have Been Keys to My Success

I suggest to you nine must-have books that have been instrumental to my success. So much so that I urge you to read these books at least once per year; I read one (or more) of them all the time.

Without further ado, here are my top nine books when it comes to building your mindset as an individual and a business owner.


Best Books to Read If You Want to Start a Business

1. Start With Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone To Take Action By Simon Sinek

This book talks about two strategies that can influence a person’s behavior: inspiration and manipulation. Sinek also goes into why inspiration is better than manipulation if you want to succeed.

Another key takeaway you can pick up from this book is consumer behavior — the “why” behind something. The book says that consumers won’t purchase an idea, movement, service, or product if they don’t understand the “why” behind it.

The book also talks about how leaders with significant influence seemingly communicate, act, and think the same way, in a manner different from others.

2. How To Win Friends & Influence People By Dale Carnegie

This self-help book by sales legend Carnegie talks about the basics of how to interact better with people to improve your professional relationships. Some of the points discussed in the book include:

  • How to get your associates motivated and enthusiastic about something
  • Using Psychology principles in your everyday communication
  • How to become a better speaker, a more entertaining conversationalist, and a better salesperson
  • How to handle complaints, have smoother conversations, and avoid arguments
  • Increasing your earning power
  • How you get more clients
  • Strategies to improve your influence, productivity, and prestige
  • How you encourage clients to adopt your perspective
  • How to enhance your popularity
  • Strategies to help you make friends more easily and quickly
  • Strategies to help you come up with new ambitions, visions, and thoughts
  • How to get out of pessimistic thinking

These things allow you to develop traits to win more clients by earning their trust and loyalty. These increase the chances of turning them into repeat and loyal customers.

3. The 7 Habits Of Highly Effective People By Stephen R. Covey

Another self-help book, this one talks about the seven habits that can help you succeed in life and business:

  • Starting with the end in mind
  • Putting first things first
  • Being proactive
  • Seeking to understand first and then to be understood
  • Synergizing
  • Sharpening the saw
  • Thinking of win-win

These seven habits present an approach that helps you reach your goals by adopting traits that the author describes as timeless and universal. The effectiveness Covey emphasizes balancing of achieving your desired results with caring for the things that help create those results.

4. The E Myth Revisited: Why Most Small Businesses Don’t Work And What To Do About It By Michael E. Gerber

The book talks about the myths related to starting a business. It also goes into how technical expertise, expectations, and common assumptions can become obstacles in running a successful business.

The book also shows you the journey of building a business, from entrepreneurial infancy to having a mature business perspective.


Other Recommended Books Specific to Building a Bookkeeping Business

5. Bookkeeping Essentials: How to Succeed as a Bookkeeper by Steven M. Bragg

This book can guide you in building a bookkeeping business since it goes through the basics of the industry and provides tips on how to navigate your day-to-day as a bookkeeper. Bragg, who has been the CFO of several companies, teaches the rules of thumb, so you can use practical methods to analyze, assess, and solve daily bookkeeping challenges.

Bookkeeping Essentials also provides practical solutions for potential issues you may encounter. It may not be the best book for those without prior knowledge about bookkeeping yet, but it’s a great resource for those who already have the bookkeeping basics nailed down and just need guidance in turning their ideas into a successful bookkeeping business.

6. Bookkeeping The Easy Way (Easy Way Series) by Wallace W. Kravitz

If you’re new to bookkeeping, this is my recommended book for you.

Bookkeeping The Easy Way is a beginner’s guide to the basic principles of bookkeeping. It provides solutions to real-world bookkeeping problems, which allows readers to see the principles in practice.
This book also intends to help out small business owners who keep track of their own financial records. If you’re thinking of becoming a bookkeeper or starting a bookkeeping business and want to know what you’re expected to do, you definitely have to check out this book.

7. Keeping The Books: Basic Recordkeeping And Accounting For Small Business by Linda Pinson

If you’re starting a bookkeeping business or want to work as a freelance or part-time bookkeeper, you’d most likely have small businesses for clients. If that’s the case, this book is a must-read because it provides a step-by-step guide on what your role entails.

Pinson also teaches other necessary skills, such as independent contracting, accrual accounting, and cash accounting.

8. Bookkeeping Made Simple: A Practical, Easy-To-Use Guide To The Basics Of Financial Management by David A. Flannery

This book is another must-read for beginners and offers a no-nonsense approach to teaching the basics of financial management. It talks about essential bookkeeping principles, such as:

  • Partnership
  • Payroll
  • Petty cash statement
  • Preparing financial statements
  • Adjustments in accounts
  • Journal entries
  • Equities
  • Assets

9. Full Charge Bookkeeping, Home Study Course Edition by Nick J. DeCandia, CPA

DeCandia, a CPA who has held several roles in corporate and public accounting and governmental audit work, has written this book for someone who’s a high school graduate and wants to pursue a career in bookkeeping. His book is written in plain English and even features a glossary of important terms and their definitions.

Unlike some of the other books on the list that are geared for those who’ll work with small businesses, Full Charge Bookkeeping also provides information about how to offer services as a full-charge bookkeeper for a medium-sized business.


Each of the Recommended Books for Starting a Bookkeeping Business Works for You

I would like to say which one of these must-read books you should read first, but I can’t!

I like, LOVE them all. Each of them works on the soil that is your mind.

These recommended books are strategic versus tactical. They work on the foundation of who you are.

They challenge your thinking and can cause tremendous growth IF you allow them.

With these recommended books for starting a bookkeeping business, you’ll have more knowledge of how the industry works and how you can be successful in reaching your business goals. Since I mentioned the mindset maven Zig Ziglar earlier, I leave you with a quote that is of tremendous value to you and me.

Please keep this in mind as you search for your opportunity. Get your mind and attention right and everything else eventually falls into place.

“You are what you are and where you are because of what has gone into your mind. You can change what you are and where you are by changing what goes into your mind.” -Zig Ziglar

Which of the recommended books for starting a bookkeeping business are you reading first? Share your thoughts in the comments section below!

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Editor’s Note: This post was originally published on November 11, 2015, and has been updated for quality and relevancy.