The business world is a competitive place, and it requires energy, luck, timing and hard work to be successful. This is true regardless if you are an entrepreneur or working inside a large company.
There are two books recently I've read that I think are helpful for anyone either starting off in a new venture or working on the strategy for their existing business.
This book has incredible insights into various business models. Covering new models like open platforms, free as a business model, multi-sided networks as well as more traditional models, this book combines strategic overview with a great planning and workshop component that would be useful for anyone looking to launch or grow a business.
Covering category design, this book is really a recipe for thinking about how you define and take leadership in a new category. In business you can choose to compete against established players, and deal with the economic reality in that market, or you can find ways to innovate and come up with a new category model.
I'm still working on figuring out the recipe for my little venture, but these books have definitely started to shape my thinking.