Top 20 Consulting Books for Absolute Beginners

Feb 24, 2019 · 9 minutes to read

Management and Other Consulting Books for New Consultants

This list of consulting and management books gives you access to business and strategy insights that you can use to establish yourself as a successful consultant, irrespective of whether you’re a consultant at a firm or an independent consultant. From financing your business to taking consultancy insurance, marketing your services and improving client success, these consultancy books give you access to all the tools you need to succeed as a consultant.

How to become a consultant

How you become a consultant depends on what type of consultancy you want to provide to your clients. But in general, the path you take remains the same. The first step entails earning a business degree in finance, business administration, accounting or marketing. Once you have the degree, you should work on getting experience in the area you want to specialize. If necessary, you can upgrade your education after this point with a master’s or a certification.

Different types of consultants

Once you choose consultancy as a path, there are many diverse areas in which you can specialize. Here are a few examples:

  • HR consultant
  • Strategy consultant
  • Business analytics consultant
  • IT consultant
  • Legal consultant
  • Marketing consultant

Recommended reading:

  1. Top 5 Niche Markets for Consultants
  2. 14 highest paid and most in-demand consulting career options

Common consulting requirements

Before you get certified as a consultant, you need to meet certain requirements. They include an understanding of how businesses work in terms of financing, legal procedures, marketing, business development, and accounting. It also doesn’t hurt to have a Bachelor’s in any area of consulting, alongside a master’s if required and additional certifications.

Best Books in Consulting for Consultants

If you’re a consultant who’s just begun his or her career, you may have felt the heat in your firm or city, due to the existing competition. You can overcome this competition by accumulating the right skills and strategies. Here are 20 top consulting books that are critical for beginner consultants:

1. The Mckinsey Way

The Mckinsey Way, as the title suggests, focuses on how Mckinsey, one of the world’s largest consulting firm, functions. While the book may be focused on Mckinsey, the insights and ideas you glean from it can be applied to your job as a consultant. As a beginner consultant, if you want to explore the day to day life, mindset, and challenges faced by a consultant, this is the book for you.

2. HBR’S 10 Must Reads: The Essentials

If you’re an ambitious beginner consultant who plans to climb the ladder quickly, this book is for you. HBR’s 10 Must Reads: The Essentials goes into depth about areas critical to managerial roles, such as strategy, analysis, and emotional intelligence. Featuring experts such as Clay Christensen and Tom Davenport, the book also explores innovation in established organizations and career acceleration.

3. The Back of the Napkin: Solving Problems and Selling Ideas with Pictures

If you dream of being a successful consultant, it’s important for you to master analytics. The Back of the Napkin advocates the belief that everybody is born with certain innate visual abilities and this intrinsic value can be leveraged to develop your analytical and strategy-building skills. Generating and nurturing ideas, and driving execution are a part of the consultancy lifestyle, and this book can help you enhance your abilities to do both.

4. Flawless Consulting: A Guide to Getting Your Expertise Used

Infamously known as the “Consultant’s Bible,” Flawless Consulting is a must-read for beginner and well-established consultants alike. Focusing on how to conduct day to day interactions, Flawless consulting will teach you how to deal with everyone from clients to managers and peers. If you wish to make a mark in the consultancy world, this consulting book has the roadmap that you should follow.

5. Linchpin

Highlighting an alternative route to success, Linchpin is a collection of marketing marvel Seth Godin’s ideas and strategies for beginners in any industry. Instead of following the management without thought or cowering among labor, the Linchpin absorbs how an organization functions and lays down his or her own path to carving a mantle for themselves. As a beginner consultant is the tough, and pressure-ridden industry, this is one book that you should read.

6. The Trusted Advisor

Why settle for the insights of one consulting expert when you can get access to three? In the Trusted Advisor, best selling mastermind David Maister collaborates with Charles H. Green and Robert M. Galford to pen down the tools most essential to negotiators, advisors, and consultants – both beginner and advanced. In a networking world that moves at break-neck speed, this book can act as your seatbelt, safely guiding you through obstacles and challenges.

7. Case Interview Secrets: A Former McKinsey Interviewer Reveals How to Get Multiple Job Offers in Consulting

The point of this series is to show readers the way to dominate what’s considered the hardest and most intimidating corporate job interview the world has ever known – the Case Interview Series. Rearing to crack that bigshot job with a global consulting giant? This proven insider’s secret could be exactly what you’re missing.

8. The Pyramid Principle: Logic in Writing and Thinking

Irrespective of the industry, effective communication is an essential requirement for success. Consultancy, in particular, requires a certain hold over communication and negotiation skills. The Pyramid Principle is a consulting guide on how to communicate clearly, effectively, and influentially. As a beginner consultant, there’s no better book to read before getting started with your career.

9. Valuation: Measuring and Managing the Value of Companies

If you’re interested in exploring mergers, acquisitions, and corporate restructuring as a career in the future, Valuation: Measuring and Managing the Value of Companies is one consulting book that you shouldn’t miss reading. Packed with updated insights and practical advice on how to measure and manage the value of companies, this book also elucidates how you can compare and interpret the value of a company against competition in the real market.

10. The McKinsey Mind: Understanding and Implementing the Problem-Solving Tools and Management Techniques of the World’s Top Strategic Consulting Firm

As a beginner consultant, your goal is to be great at what you do. The McKinsey Mind has insights into how you can effectively analyze client problems and craft ingenious working solutions. With special access to Mckinsey’s line of attack, business problem-framing strategies, fact-checking and analysis, and tips for strategic decision-making, The Mckinsey Mind can transform you from a beginner consultant into a consulting expert.

11. Key Management Models: The 60+ Models Every Manager Needs to Know

As a beginner consultant who wants to go places, you can’t afford to miss reading Key Management Models. With an in-depth exploration of risk-reward analysis and the innovation circle, to SWOT analysis and core competencies, this management guide touches all key aspects of consulting management that you need to succeed at a competitive consulting firm.

12. How to Win Friends and Influence People

A pioneer in the self-help for management genre, How to Win Friends and Influence People is a consulting book that can transform your career rapidly. With insights into people’s psychology and practical advice on how you can make an impression and influence people follow your ideas and strategies, this book is a must-read for consultants and people in all other industries.

13. Who Will Do What By When

With a gripping storyline to keep you engaged, Who Will Do What By When is a brilliant book that takes you back to learn the fundamentals of team dynamics and performance. In a world inflicted by organizational politics, this management guide introduces to readers tools that they can use to navigate difficult situations and achieve desirable outcomes.

14. Blue Ocean Strategy: How to Create Uncontested Market Space

If you think you know what it takes to compete in today’s crowded marketplace, think again! Written by today’s business gurus, Blue Ocean Strategy is a management guide that challenges your thinking, forcing you to reevaluate practices that you have internalized and adopted on autopilot. Exploring 150 strategic moves in 30 industries, Blue Ocean Strategy is exactly what you need to set yourself apart as a beginner consultant.

15. Million Dollar Consulting

Today’s consultancy industry is busier than ever, demanding more out of consultants who are just entering the field. If you need a consultancy book that guides you through the ins and outs of competitive consulting, pick up a copy of Million Dollar Consulting now. The book has a step-by-step guide to turning your current firm into a $1-million-a-year organization.

16. Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap…and Others Don’t

In the corporate world, some companies make it while others don’t. What are the factors responsible for distinguishing successful companies from the rest? Explore the answer to this question on Good to Great. This book studies elite companies such as Coca-Cola, Intel, General Electric, and Merck that made the leap from good to great and sustained that greatness for over fifteen years.

17. Getting Started in Consulting

Planning to take a break from the corporate set-up to establish your own consultancy? Alan Weiss’s Getting Started in Consulting is the consultancy book that can help you achieve that goal. From intel on how you can account 6 to 7-figure salaries to advice on financing your business and marketing your services, Getting Started in Consulting has everything that an independent consultant would need to know.

18. Built to Last: Successful Habits of Visionary Companies

Want to learn what it takes to last in the consultancy business? Pick up a copy of Built to Last: Successful Habits of Visionary Companies. This book analyzes a 6-year-long study conducted by the Stanford University Graduate School of Business to understand companies that are truly exceptional and compare them directly to less successful competitors.

19. Competitive Strategy: Techniques for Analyzing Industries and Competitors

Used around the globe to teach business theory, practice, and strategy, Competitive strategy is a reliable source of intel on three popular strategies—lowest cost, differentiation, and focus. Millions of managers, consultants, analysts, and students around the world have used Competitive strategy to turn their goals into reality. As a beginner consultant, there’s no better book for you to read before you try to acquire or keep clients.

20. The Secrets of Consulting – A Guide to Giving and Getting Advice Successfully

When starting out in consulting, you’ll notice that there’s a lot of competition and many challenges in establishing your value in the market. The Secrets of Consulting is a book that delves into marketing and pricing principles so you can analyze what’s necessary to choose the right price point for your services while making your brand known in the industry.

Get Free Online Quotes and get coverage instantly

The coverage you need for your business.

Business insurance is divided into different policies. We offer 4 types so it's easy to design the coverage that fits your business.

Professional Liability Insurance

Get a quote

General Liability Insurance

Get a quote

Business Owner’s Policy (BOP)

Get a quote

Workers Compensation Insurance

Get a quote

Let's find

The coverage you need for your business

Professional Liability Insurance

Get a quote

General Liability Insurance

Get a quote

Business Owner’s Policy (BOP)

Get a quote

Workers Compensation Insurance

Get a quote

Super helpful! Made everything so easy!!!
Andrea O.
00:22 29 Mar 23
Very professional people. Prompt reactions always
emile W.
16:06 28 Mar 23
BizInsure has really come through for me on some really hard to place risks. Andrew takes the time to understand the risk and work through how we can make it work, rather than looking for ways to say no. Thank you for your help!
Carlos T.
18:06 16 Mar 23
Very helpful and explanatory on the policy line of the policy
Josua V.
17:30 14 Mar 23
Worked with Tevin. Amazing customer service. Was very patient with me in figuring out the best insurance coverage for business. Thanks Tevin for making it easy.
Faisal O.
16:23 14 Mar 23
No complaints, Always a fast response when a need arises.
Dan F.
13:56 10 Mar 23
Very good information patience was shown. Much help from Kaled, satisfied with the amount of insurance and good coverage. Affordable is what you need with starting a small business until you grow. Old saying is go as you grow.
Jacquelynn W.
21:53 20 Jan 23
Professionals at what they do! easy to navigate and very good people to lead to to the best coverage!
Magnifier 2.
20:37 17 Jan 23
I have been shopping for business liability insurance for several months. I am happy to share that BizInsure ranked #1! The representatives were polite, patient, and empathetic. They accomplished what most companies struggle with achieving: they did what they said they were going to do, they were on time, and they had empathy. They delivered a policy for 25% less than the closest competetor, and even included $50k of cyber security at no additional cost! I only write reviews when I receive exceptional experiences- highly revommended; keep up the great service BizInsure!P.S. I own a professional referral service in Hawai'i and I am going to see if BizInsure offers an affiliate program.Aloha!
John S.
05:51 23 Nov 22
They respond quickly and give you quotes immediately ...
Regean K.
23:55 09 Nov 22
The agent that I spoke to was very experienced and could tell that I was new at this and was very understanding and took the time to explain everything to me.
lotanga J.
00:04 15 Oct 22
Easy to work with and very responsive. Glad to have them as my broker.
Edward G.
18:54 13 Sep 22
We’re very happy with BiInsured LLC. VERY AFFORDABLE
Paul A. F.
19:20 11 Sep 22
Jasmine Q was on the spot professional, she knew where to direct me and explain to me my concerns and request; she delivered my personal information within minutes of me asking policy questions.That young lady is a true ROCK STAT!!!
Shaka 3 Z.
23:09 15 Aug 22
For a small non-profit, the package I was given was affordable. The representative was polite, patient, understanding, and knowledgeable.
Gertrude R.
18:06 15 Aug 22
Asked for a specific venue to be place on our certificate of insurance and it was done within one business day. Yay! Bizinsure!
Melinda S.
17:02 01 Aug 22
The process was fast and easy and the professional staff was very knowledgeable with any questions that I had and ready to help
06:40 31 Mar 22
Friendly agents. Timely replies. Fair pricing. This is a good fit for my business! Thank you, Noah, for all your help.
Beth Anne V.
19:27 28 Mar 22
They are awesome
Tony H.
00:41 07 Jan 22
Noa made sure I had all the information I needed for a first time business owner . He helped me understand what I needed to secure a quality policy and he was super helpful when explaining how the policy would serve its purpose to my company. I was very satisfied and had an Awesome experience, I think people like that make the company look good!
Wayleen O.
04:36 15 Oct 21
I was in need of WC, GL and PL coverages for my business and was able to shop, discuss, confirm and purchase all the coverages in two days! This was a great experience, especially when "Time is Money". Noah Bowman was very professional and knowledgeable. Thanks!
AmeriCreed 1.
15:42 23 Sep 21
19:49 09 Sep 21
Their representative clearly explained different kinds of policies to help me select the one appropriate for my needs and then helped me enroll by phone painlessly. By the end of the call, I had a policy in place.
Dissent D.
22:21 02 Sep 21
Eugene was Awesome!!!!
Lakesha G
17:19 21 Jul 21
Excellent solution for writers and authors professional liability policy as well as coverage for copyright and trademark infringement. Service was prompt and excellent.
18:22 22 Jun 21
Done in less than an hour!
William O.
00:30 02 Jun 21
Efficient, and great value. The agent was able to give us a quote and a new policy in a short period of time. Thank you
Brenda J.
20:30 24 May 21
I had a great experiencing obtaining several of my insurance needs as a landscaping company here in Northern Colorado. BizInsure's team took care of my needs and was very responsive to help with paperwork needed to secure a potential client account!
Arik S.
16:34 10 May 21
Very efficient they were able to help me out with my request promptly....highly recommend this companyI am very happy to have them
Elba P.
18:50 26 Apr 21
I need a help getting errors and omissions insurance along with general liability. Jose was very friendly informative and was very patient with me during the process. He found me some of the best rates for the coverage that I needed. Highly recommend
Casper M.
19:51 20 Apr 21
I had numerous conversations with several business insurance agents over a month's time. I also had several conversations confirming the policy inclusion/exclusions and asked many questions. My BizInsure agent was professional, knowledgeable and most important—detail oriented. Even after having an initial conversation a month earlier he knew and *remembered* all my personal/professional insurance needs. When I asked for additional information on the third call he was able to provide me with details very quickly. He was also VERY patient. That is a big plus in my opinion. It illustrated a high level of respect for my needs. I also found when I called back and asked to talk with the initial agent, the person who answered the call was able to get in contact quickly and my agent responded and returned the call within 5-10 minutes. The transaction was smooth, and I think it's a good sign should I ever need to make a claim. I highly recommend BizInsure.
Poetic F.
21:00 07 Apr 21
The rep was extremely helpful actually lowered my quote and made sure I was covered to fit my needs with my growing business! 5star!!
Franklin B.
19:04 16 Mar 21
Excellent service and prices.
Cassiopée V L.
23:13 09 Mar 21
Mr. Daniel Scott was very responsive to my professional needs.
Stephanie W.
17:38 18 Feb 21
Eugene deserves a raise! First time purchasing insurance and he made the process so simple for me. His patience and attention to detail left me feeling confident in my decision to choose BizInsure. Gracias Eugene!
Esined P.
23:32 17 Feb 21
The customer service provided by Jose was outstanding. He explained everything in a very clear/logical way and answered all of my questions. After providing all the information to obtain general liability insurance, Jose sent me the declaration page of the insurance for review. All of the information matched what I provided over the phone and there were no typos. The next day I called back to purchase the insurance which was easy and fast. Overall, my experience with BizInsure including the customer service by Jose exceeded my expectations.
Joe W.
03:29 12 Dec 20
Hiscox/BizInsure made getting Liability Insurance very easy and reasonable.I expected it to be a long and complicated process and it was a nice surprise that they made it so uncomplicated. Thank you. Lisa
Lisa W.
21:51 24 Nov 20
Eugene was incredible. I called 4 other brokers before him who were impossible to get any help.
rhonda H.
23:26 12 Nov 20
Very quick to get in touch with you and good with follow up. Had some trouble retrieving my quote to log into my account initially but Daniel assisted me and the changes were made to get me into my account. Great value for the money.
Fran S.
16:34 20 Sep 20
Very happy to be insured with this company. Professional, Timely, very helpful. Thank you Juan, you made it so much easier for me to understand.
Aileen D.
19:55 15 Sep 20
This company responded when I needed them to respond while facing a deadline. They are an excellent choice for business Insurance.
Michele H.
01:52 12 Sep 20
Jose Quintero took such great care of me and was very patient explained everything I did not understand and got me set up quickly. Fabulous customer service
Christina R.
02:41 27 Aug 20
I can't say enough good things about Daniel Santos kind and effective communication skills as an insurance agent. Daniel was so pleasant, friendly and efficient with helping me obtain insurance as a teacher. If I were to give Daniel a grade, he has earned an At . He made the process easy to understand, it was far easier than what I anticipated. Nancy S.
Nancy S.
00:47 26 Aug 20
I was in need of professional liability insurance for my sole proprietorship. A friend referred me. Everythng was quick and simple and AFFORDABLE!
hope J.
20:31 25 Aug 20
If you need Private Home Care Provider insurance for your company, BizInsure, LLC can get it for you!
Pamela C.
16:45 24 Aug 20
Great and fast service!!!! The representative was very professional!!!!
Tanya S.
19:51 14 Jul 20
I was tryi9ng to find commercial liability insurance for my new comp-any and BizInsure was easy to use and very affordable which is great for me as a new business.
Jimmy S.
19:01 14 Jul 20
Great service insurance prices are great for professionals looking to get insurance for businesses....
Rhonda G.
22:34 22 Jun 20
The provided very professional service and made the process easy.
Paul R.
21:51 04 Jun 20
Bradley Hoyle from the Biz Insure team was excellent to work with. Everything was quick and smooth. Great service, much appreciated!
Kristene S.
02:03 04 Jun 20
Anthony Spencer was great!! Very quick response time!! He was very Professional! I would suggest him because he helped me find a affordable rate and explained all the technicalities..
Fre H.
16:38 28 May 20
I was referred to Bizinsure by a industry trade group that I am a member of. It was easy to get a quote online and then received excellent customer service from Bradley H. to complete my policy purchase over the phone. I have shared this company information now with other business owners for their policy needs.
Dawn T.
22:11 08 May 20
This company was very precise with explaining services and made sure I chose the right business insurance coverage, great customer service at purchasing.
Nekeisha B.
01:30 05 May 20
Jasmine Q
14:31 02 Dec 19
Trish is the most patient, professional and understanding insurance agent I’ve ever worked with. Trish has taken care of all my business insurance needs for the last couple years. I am really happy that I found an insurance agent that I know will take care of me & all of my concerns. I feel like a valued customer & I appreciate the great customer service that I get every time!!THANK YOU!
Dr. Youssef C. A.
17:21 14 Nov 18
Tricia helped me get insurance for my business. The task of obtaining a quote was really starting to frustrate me until I was referred to BizInsure through a different agency. Tricia got me a quote fast, and even took a down payment over the phone and issued the proof of insurance the same day. a+ service, would do it again in a heartbeat!! Thank you!!
Josh M.
18:07 22 Jun 18
BizInsure was a great find! I did not have to fill out applications, and Tricia was able to quote and bind business insurance for me within half an hour.
Allison Y.
17:28 21 Jun 18
Started doing business again and needed a policy fast. Ramez was reasonable, helpful and the rates are OK. Buyer beware? Sure, for me it turned out OK this time. Worth a call.
Mark W.
23:42 13 Nov 17
Great customer service. I've been very inpressed with my dedicated representative that had helped me navegate my insurence needs. Thanks so much!
Graham B.
22:12 23 Jun 17

Popular Searches

Google Rating
Based on 92 reviews