Many people find reading books a tedious exercise, an academic burden. They feel reading anything extra besides what you need to pass your grades at school is unnecessary, whereas good business men/women usually read a lot. I am not talking about the reading of ‘recipe for success’ books or ‘how to make it’ kind of books no, I mean truly reading for the mere fun of it or to gain additional insight in a field of interest, like reading a comic for example, or a novel, a journal, an encyclopedia or even the newspaper (like really read it not flick through the sports section).
There are some peculiar things that point to the fact that the business man or entrepreneur had a long standing relationship with books. Either naturally or they had to overcome laziness, successful entrepreneurs usually possess the following characteristics when it comes to reading books.
They Gain More Knowledge
You have to imagine the amount of knowledge, wisdom, experience and emotion that is being held within the pages of a book. Every time someone reads a book he acquaints himself to other people’s ideas and their knowledge, and because the real essence of a book is to record and share a thought or information when someone reads it and understands it, communication is established, which is fundamental in the process of learning (a.k.a gaining knowledge).
Now by reading, a businessman has more insight of the world around him, giving him an edge in making decisions and bringing up opinions.
It Helps Their Communication Skills
The more a person reads the more one is capable of remembering terms and vocabulary and when to use them. When you know how to place your words as they come out of your mouth, you can sell anything.
Communication skill is imperative to business, because it is how you relate with your customers that determines patronage from them. An interactive businessman is more likely to succeed in getting more customers to his side than one who is not, because sometimes the difference between a sold product and an unsold one is a very thin line that could be broken by knowing what your customer wants, and this can only be established through interaction with the customer. Take note, huge companies invest a lot of money and effort into their ‘customer service’.
Reading Books Opens Their Minds
Being acquainted with other peoples’ traditions and customs opens one’s mind to accept ideas and philosophies more easily, and this ability to accept new things is very good for business because it elicits creativity, and creativity is the finest way to stay ahead of competition in your business. It means by thinking of new ways to solve problems you will always be a step ahead.
And if you think about it, business is there to solve problems, as it exists to provide our basic day-to-day needs in order to survive. But in order to have that edge one has to be creative, and reading books does just that.
They Make a Living Out of It
The market for books is very very big. There are publishers, editors, authors, printers, literary agents and a whole bunch of others. A good businessman can transform a hobby into a thriving business, and reading is just about the most popular hobby besides sports I guess. They try their hands at various literary jobs that fit them, and make money!
Starting a publishing house or (in this new age ‘blogging’), is a great example.
They Themselves Write Books
When you read a lot, it’s inevitable you will write too. ‘My Years with general Motors’ by Alfred Sloan CEO General Motors, ‘Winning: The Ultimate Business How-To-Book’ by Jack Welch CEO General Electric, ‘Business @ The Speed of Thought…’ by Bill Gates and so on and so fault. All these famous people, and rich I might add, felt inspired by something to write those books down, some by their success, some by their struggle to succeed, and some just being plainly egotistical. Imagine a world without books, business would be rudimentary at best.
So besides being more educated, more open minded, more famous and richer, reading makes your mom happy, because she can see you are finally giving the TV a rest.
By Hafiz Mukhtar Mahmud
Connect with Hafiz on Facebook.