Dear Business Founder,
I believe I am the right guy for the “POSITIVE GHOST WRITER” job. Just like you, I am also an entrepreneur. I am the CEO of a small Philippine-registered corporation, G&B Group, a company owned by my family, with business interests in the real estate, construction, retail, financing, and mining industries. You must be asking yourself right now as to what a CEO is doing applying for a writing job — a ghost writing job — when he is supposed to be writing his own book or busy running the business.
Yes, I don’t need the money. I’m doing this just because I want to. Because every and any chance I get to write is a chance for me to do something that I love doing. The thing is, I don’t just think of myself as an entrepreneur; I think of myself as an artist, too — someone with a need to express himself through creative and self-indulgent means.
There are three things in life I am passionate about: business, writing, and books. I can’t live without a pen, a paper, a plan, prose and poetry, and publishing companies.
Brooke Astor, the late New York philanthropist, once said, “If you have books, you will never get bored.” And I totally agree. Books are very important because they not only inform, enlighten, and entertain us; they nourish our souls. Every fiction, novels or pocket books, verbalize and articulate our thoughts and feelings through the characters, mirror our very own realities through the different plots and twists, and help us realize the darkest secrets within us that we never would have through any other means. Every nonfiction — self-help, biographies, memoirs, business, and history books — teach us invaluable life lessons through the experiences of all the ones before us. These are the authors who have been successful in their chosen fields. Leaders from the business, political, social, medical, military, literary, and religious worlds. People who shaped the way we think and see the world.
As a human being, I need books because they are the best companions — they’ll never leave me. I always find solace in them — they comfort me whenever I’m feeling lonely, they let me travel the world without having to leave my room, and they make me understand people — their behavior, their customs, and their culture even before having visited people’s countries.
As a businessman, books inspire me to be better than my best, and essentially, they make me want to help others be the best versions of themselves. Warren Buffett would never have been where he is now if he never read Benjamin Graham’s investment book, Security Analysis, when he was just 19 years old. Jack Welch might have never been the CEO of General Electronics if he didn’t love to read. Donald Trump might be a less successful businessman if he didn’t wake up early in the morning reading books and memorizing quotes from philosophers and other world leaders. Bill Gates or Hank Paulson would never have been as fabulously wealthy had it not been for the principles and philosophies shared by others before them. Successful people are the ones who have an insatiable appetite for knowledge — voracious readers. They never want to stop growing and learning everyday.
People in the business and financial world have, for the umpteenth time, have made lapses of judgment and have kept repeating history all because they have failed to consult the voices of reason, logic, and experience — books authored by the ones whose stories reveal the basic truths about life, solutions to problems, lessons learned from setbacks, answers to prayers, and preventive measures against humanity’s folly and grandiose delusions.
Without Paolo Coelho’s novels, Stephen Covey’s 7 Habits of Highly Successful People and The 8th Habit, John C. Maxwell’s self-help books, Ernest Becker’s The Denial of Death, Peter Drucker’s books about management, The Dalai Lama’s Art of Happiness, or even J.K Rowling’s Harry Potter series, anybody who’s somebody in the business world could never have made it without the help of books — those brilliant minds of the past and the present who have the key to unlocking the doors to the kingdoms of prosperity, promise, and purpose.
Books teach us how to read financial statements; show us proven methods of growing our enterprise; aggressively and successfully market our products; improve our relationships with our customers; communicate with our colleagues, bosses, and employees better; show us the value of emotional intelligence; and challenge us to strive for excellence at all times.
I can’t remember when my love affair with books began. But this much I know is true — I will never be as driven, as ambitious, as determined, and as passionate in business as I am now if it weren’t for the words that have been masterfully and eloquently written in the pages of War and Peace, Buffettology, The Intelligent Investor, Wealth of Nations, The Art of War, and all the other beautiful leather-bound and paperback copies that line the shelves and sitting atop the tables in my room and library — those pretty, little things I am married to — pretty, little things called books.
Francis Baraan IV