5 Books That Can Set Your Career on Fire

We all want expert advice, but few of us can afford to pay the experts for their opinion. Fortunately for us, they write books. Here’s a look at five must-read career books you can pick up at the bookstore, library or on your eReader to advance your career.

For Introverts or Managers of Introverts…

“Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking” by Susan Cain

It may not be in their nature for introverts to loudly celebrate the release of this book, but they should. For anyone struggling to promote themselves on the job or on social media, Susan Cain’s book will provide much-needed encouragement and validation for the value of people who need alone time in order to recharge their creative batteries. This is also a great book to read for management or leadership initiatives that wish to acknowledge and support introverts in the workplace.

For the Aspiring CEO…

“Leaders Eat Last: Why Some Teams Pull Together and Others Don’t” by Simon Sinek

“Officers eat last,” is the meaningful quote that inspires this book of advice for aspiring CEOs and leaders in the business world. The phrase comes from a conversation between bestselling author Simon Sinek and a Marine Corps general that led Sinek to reflect on the difference between successful and unsuccessful leadership in the many companies with whom he consults.

This book shares great insight into how a person can develop leadership potential and come to understand how a leader’s decisions and spirit influence the performance, motivation and trust of employees within a company.

For the Entrepreneurial Creative…

Creativity, Inc.: Overcoming the Unseen Forces That Stand in the Way of True Inspiration” by Ed Catmull and Amy Wallace

Anyone wondering what it would be like to be on the team that crafted some of the most successful and creative movies in history will love this book my Ed Catmull and Amy Wallace.

While it focuses on how things work at Pixar Animation Studios, this business memoir also offers executive-level insight into how the worlds of business and creativity collide: from managing creative staff members to managing the managers of those employees and beyond. As a bonus, you’ll also get a glimpse into the day-to-day stories and anecdotes behind Pixar’s award-winning films and creative projects with George Lucas and Steve Jobs.

For Career Changers…

“Reinventing You: Define Your Brand, Imagine Your Future” by Diane Clark

“You can do anything you put your mind to!” might feel like hackneyed advice, but you’ll believe it wholeheartedly after reading Diane Clark’s book on career reinvention and branding.

This business book offers practical advice for getting started, starting over or changing direction within your career with a focus on personal branding and marketing tactics you can apply to the job hunt. In particular, Clark’s advice on rebranding and storytelling within the context of a career will help you explain your career in cover letters and set you at ease during interviews, not to mention position your unique experience to make a valuable contribution in your new job.

For the Feisty Millennial…

“#GIRLBOSS” by Sophia Amoruso

Feisty millennials and creative entrepreneurs of all ages looking for an example of unorthodox success in the business world need look no further than Nasty Gal CEO Sophia Amoruso. This business-focused autobiography gives readers a peek into what it’s like to go from a boring, passionless day job to running a successful private company, with frank and candid stories of life before and after success included throughout.

While this book won’t offer clear business or career advice for repeating her success, it can give readers a powerful hit of motivation and encouragement for developing their own quirky ventures.

It’s hard to choose just five influential career books for this list. Can you help us expand this list by commenting with your favorite career book of 2014?