6 books that inspired billionaire Jeff Bezos



Like most influential leaders and entrepreneurs across the world, Jeff Bezos is also an avid reader.

A self-made billionaire, Bezos is the founder and executive chairman at Amazon. Here we list down some of Jeff Bezos’ favourite books and a few other which have left a mark on him.

Checkout this list and add these books to your reading list.

1. ‘The Remains of the Day’ by Kazuo Ishiguro

Kazuo Ishiguro won the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1989 for his novel ‘The Remains of the Day’. The story follows Stevens, a butler, as he recalls his life in the form of diary enteries. Set in wartime England, he starts to question his loyalty to his former employer while he is on a vacation. “My favorite novel is ‘The Remains of the Day’,” Bezos had said in an interview to Fast Company.

2. ‘Built to Last’ by James Collins, Jerry Porras, Jim Collins

‘Built to Last: Successful Habits of Visionary Companies’, as the title suggests, is about what makes some companies exceptionally successful than the others. The result is based on a ‘six-year research project at the Stanford University Graduate School of Business’, as per the book’s blurb. Bezos has revealed in an interview to Fast Company that ‘Built to Last’ was one of his favourite books.

3. ‘Creation: Life and How to Make It’ by Steve Grand

Working remotely and mostly alone, Steve Grand created his 1996 computer game ‘Creatures’ by writing roughly 250,000 computer code lines alone. In this book, the author tries to decode artificial intelligence and life in context of his computer game.

The book “was influential in the creation of Amazon Web Services, or AWS, the service that popularized the notion of the cloud,” writes author Brad Stone in his book ‘The Everything Store: Jeff Bezos and the Age of Amazon’. In this biography on Amazon, Stone writes about the books that inspired Jeff Bezos for forming Amazon.

4. ‘The Black Swan’ by Nassim Nicholas Taleb

‘The Black Swan: The Impact Of The Highly Improbable is a book that focuses on what has now come to be known as the Black Swan Theory. Through a number of examples, the author aims to show his readers how rare and unpredictable events have a deep and lasting impact on a person’s life. Human beings tend to try and rationalise such happenings almost immediately after they happen. This is an almost impossible task since such events are based on chance. A number of other topics, which relate to aesthetics, ways of life, knowledge and much more, have been discussed in this book,’ reads the book’s blurb.

5. ‘Rework’ by Jason Fried and David Heinemeier Hansson

In this book, authors Jason Fried and David Heinemeier Hansson tell readers that in order to really succeed in their businesses or work one needs to stop looking at the competitors and start working. They also tell why oone doesn’t need outside investors and why plans are actually harmful. “Unperturbed by conventional wisdom, [the authors] start fresh and rewrite the rules of business. Their approach turns out to be as successful as it is counter-intuitive,” Bezos said about the book, according to

6. ‘The Goal: A Process of Ongoing Improvement’ by Eliyahu M. Goldratt and Jeff Cox

In this pacy novel, authors Eliyahu M. Goldratt and Jeff Cox explore the theory of constraints from the perspective of management. Talking about the book and how it influenced Jeff Bezos, Stone writes in his book, “An exposition of the science of manufacturing written in the guise of the novel, the book encourages companies to identify the biggest constraints in their operations… And then structure their organizations to get the most out of those constraints.”

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