Entrepreneurship, Product Development, & Product Management – Reading List / Resources

Curated by Ken Rother –,

(Last Updated: Feb.21/22)



Highly Recommended:

Business model generation a handbook for visionaries,game changers, and challengers

Value Proposition Design: How to Create Products and Services Customers Want

Testing Business Ideas: A Field Guide for Rapid Experimentation

The Startup Owner’s Manual: The Step-by-Step Guide for Building a GreatCompany

Disciplined Entrepreneurship: 24 Steps to a Successful Startup

Talking to Humans: Success starts with understanding your customers 

(legal free PDF)

Testing with humans: How to use experiments to make faster,more informed decision making

(legal free PDF)

Where to play: 3 steps for discovering your most valuable market opportunities

Optional but helpful:

The four steps to the epiphany: Successful strategies for products that win

The founder’s dilemmas: Anticipating and avoiding the pitfalls that can sink a startup

Radical Candor: Be a Kick-Ass Boss Without Losing Your Humanity

The Art of the Start 2.0: The Time-Tested, Battle-Hardened Guide for Anyone Starting Anything

Entrepreneurship in the Wild: A Startup Field Guide

The Invincible Company: How to Constantly Reinvent Your Organization with Inspiration From the World’s Best Business Models

High-Impact Tools for Teams: 5 Tools to Align Team Members, Build Trust, and Get Results Fast  

Specialty Topics:

Academic Entrepreneurship – University Spinoffs and Wealth Creation

Product management

The messy middle finding your way through the hardest and most crucial part of any bold venture

Making Ideas Happen: Overcoming the Obstacles Between Vision and Reality

Product Management in Practice: A Real-World Guide to the Key Connective Role of the 21st Century

Design sprint: A practical guidebook for building great digital products

Product Roadmaps Relaunched: How to Set Direction while Embracing Uncertainty

Inspired: How to Create Tech Products Customers Love

Escaping the Build Trap: How Effective Product Management Creates Real Value

Building a StoryBrand: Clarify Your Message So Customers Will Listen

Measure What Matters – OKRs

Why People (Don’t) Buy: The Go and Stop Signals

Hardware Product Entrepreneurship

Product Realization: Going from One to a Million

Prototype to product: A practical guide for getting to market

The hardware startup: building your product, business, and brand


The Art of Electronics: The x-chapters. Cambridge

Learning the Art of Electronics: A Hands-On Lab Course

Make electronics: Learning through discovery

Encyclopedia of Electronic Components Volume 1 Resistors, Capacitors, Inductors, Switches, Encoders, Relays, Transistors

Encyclopedia of Electronic Components Volume 2: LEDs, LCDs, Audio, Thyristors, Digital Logic, and Amplification

Encyclopedia of Electronic Components Volume 3: Sensors for Location, Presence, Proximity, Orientation, Oscillation, Force, Load, Human Input, Liquid … Light, Heat, Sound, and Electricity

Make: More Electronics: Journey Deep Into the World of Logic Chips, Amplifiers, Sensors, and Randomicity

Practical Electronics for Inventors 


Programming Arduino: Getting started with sketches

Exploring Arduino: Tools and Techniques for Engineering Wizardry

Exploring Raspberry Pi: Interfacing to the Real World with Embedded Linux

Programming the Raspberry Pi, Third Edition: Getting Started with Python


Mechanical engineering for makers: A hands-on guide to designing and making physical things

Motors for makers: A guide to steppers, servos, and other electrical machines


Materials, Processes, & Design

Materials and design the art and science of material selection in product design

The Industrial Design Reference & Specification Book: Everything Industrial Designers Need to Know Every Day

Structural packaging: Design your own boxes and 3-D forms

Materials for Design

Making it: Manufacturing techniques for product design

Manufacturing processes for design professionals

The Materials sourcebook for design professionals

Shop Tools & Techniques 

Getting started with 3D printing: A hands-on guide to the hardware,software, and services behind the new manufacturing revolution

Make: Fusion 360 for makers: Design your own digital models for 3D printing and CNCfabrication

Functional Design for 3D Printing: Designing 3d printed things for everyday use

Design for CNC: Furniture Projects and Fabrication Technique

Getting Started with CNC: Personal Digital Fabrication with Shapeoko and Other Computer-Controlled Routers

Getting Started with 3D Carving: Five Step-by-Step Projects to Launch You on Your Maker Journey

Make: Tools: How they work and how to use them

Make: Tips and Tales from the Workshop: A Handy Reference for Makers 

The Makers Field Guide

Workshop Mastery with Jimmy DiResta: A Guide to Working With Metal, Wood, Plastic, and Leather

Prototyping & Manufacturing

Beyond the prototype: A roadmap for navigating the fuzzy area between ideas and outcomes

Prototyping and modelmaking for product design

Prototyping and low-volume production


The design thinking playbook: Mindful digital transformation of teams, products, services, business and ecosystems

The design thinking toolbox: A guide to mastering the most popular and valuable innovation methods

Research methods for product design

The design of everyday things

Emotional Design: Why We Love (or Hate) Everyday Things

Designing for How People Think: Using Brain Science to Build Better Products

Cradle to Cradle

Entrepreneurship Stories & Concepts

The Lean Startup: How Today’s Entrepreneurs Use Continuous Innovation to Create Radically Successful Businesses


The Hard Thing About Hard Things: Building a Business When There Are No Easy Answers


The Innovator’s Dilemma: When New Technologies Cause Great Firms to Fail 



Blogs, Posts, Podcasts, Videos, & Twitter Handles:



The Entrepreneurial Strategy Compass

Intellectual Property Video Series University of Michigan 

HBR Design Thinking

Design Thinking IDEO

Design Thinking resources Stanford D.School

Startups Magazine

Hardware Entrepreneurship

An Introduction to MAHD Modified Agile for Hardware Development


Internet of Things: A Primer for Product Managers

Make: Digikey Development Board Guide

How to Build it: Lean Prototyping Techniques for Hardware

Food Entrepreneurship

From Concept To Commercialization-10 Steps To Getting Your Food Product To Market

Introduction to Starting a Small Food Business for Food Entrepreneurs

Dan Pashman Mission Impastable

Product Management

John Cutler – The Beautiful Mess

How Superhuman Built an Engine to Find Product Market Fit



Kickstarter planning


VC, Investment, Strategy, etc. etc, etc.

SBIR and SBIR Program overview presentation

Firstround Capital

Equity Crowdfunding – Republic 

Equity Crowdfunding – Startengine

Scott Galloway- No Mercy / No Malice

Ben Thompson – Stratechery

Ali Hamed and other Cross Stack 









SEEED Studio

Mechanical & Materials

McMaster Carr


Service Bureaus 

Protolabs – 3D Printing, CNC, & Injection Molding

Shapeways – 3D printing

Tempoautomation PCB Assembley

JLC PCB – Blank PCBs