A woman reading a book in her office.

Reading is fundamental: Why you should give your staff an unlimited book budget

We’re an outsourced bookkeeping services firm full of bookworms. We churn pages with just about as much passion as we crunch numbers. In fact, at Legacy Advantage, employees can order any nonfiction book and we reimburse them for it. The only condition is that when they’re done reading it, they add the book to our staff library so that others can read it, too.

Why do we do this?

Well, put simply, it aligns with our core values, which are to:

  • Communicate fearlessly
  • Never settle
  • Embrace entrepreneurship – own it, improve it and deliver it
  • Win and lose as a team
  • Understand that nothing is given, and everything is earned
  • Unleash untapped potential

This program relates most specifically to that last value: unleashing the untapped potential of our associates. We recognize that our associates have broad interests and talents. Our book program encourages curiosity, exploration and learning, and gives our associates the opportunity to grow as human beings, not just as accountants.

But, don’t take our word for it; take our associates’:

“The book budget has helped completely shift my mindset from being a positional manager to wanting to strive for a level 5 leadership. I knew I wanted to find a new company where I could make a difference and where I could have an impact on people and the company. Without the unlimited freedom of education and opportunity provided by the book budget, I don’t know if I would have succeeded.” – Lorna Jones

“This is a great program! I’ve never experienced this type of program before. I love developing myself, and being that I’m not in school right now, I have the time to read other things.” – David Nguyen

It’s very fulfilling for us to be able to make a difference to our staff in this way, and their engagement with the program has resulted in some real gems of wisdom, insight and inspiration. Here are 5 books that our associates think you’ll love:

  1. Essential: Essays by the Minimalists
  2. This collection of essays on the essentials of the minimalist lifestyle is intended to help you live each day with greater intention. Topics covered range from simplicity and decluttering to health, finances and relationships.
  3. Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap … And Others Don’t
  4. With a nod to the iconic 1990s business management study Built to Last, this book looks not at how outstanding companies maintain greatness over time, but instead, at how mediocre – and even bad – companies can achieve greatness over time.
  5. Scaling Up: How a Few Companies Make It … and Why the Rest Don’t
  6. The title really says it all. Written by the founder of the Entrepreneurs’ Organization (EO), this book takes a hard look at why only a small number of companies (and ideas) succeed, while so many more fail to make a mark.
  7. Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future
  8. From childhood to superstardom, this in-depth biography chronicles the life (so far) of world-famous tech entrepreneur Elon Musk and the details of his many business endeavours, including PayPal, Tesla Motors, SpaceX and SolarCity. 
  9. Wooden on Leadership: How to Create a Winning Organization
  10. Written by renowned business coach John Wooden, this book draws on Wooden’s personal journey, as well as his “12 Lessons in Leadership” and “Pyramid of Success,” to provide readers with a framework for building a winning organization.

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