Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Tiri Kuimbakul’s vision for Papua New Guinea

Tiri Kuimbakul’s book Success after Graduation has become a runaway bestseller since its launch in November 2006.

Since the launch of the book – aimed at young people in general – over 400 copies have been sold in the first three months, with orders coming in from all over the country.

And his star has continued to rise since the launch, with interviews with both local and overseas media; a weekly newspaper column for young people; and meeting many people personally and through an avalanche of emails, faxes, letters, and telephone calls.

This is all something new for the quietly-spoken layman pastor.“

When I first came upon the idea of writing books sometime in July 2005, I did not know what lay ahead of me,” he reflects.

“It has been like launching out into deep waters not knowing what will happen.“It has really been a journey of faith.

“And I have met so many people I would never have known had I not written this book, many through correspondence.

“I hope to meet them in person some day.

“I am very happy with the response so far.

“I have sold many copies already to individuals - young people and parents, three bookshops and several schools.

“The first printing was 1000 copies.

“I gave away about 50 for promotional purposes.

“Of the balance, I have sold over 400 copies since November last year.

“So it is selling very well.“I hope to go for a second print sooner than I thought.

“One provincial government has already ordered 1600 copies for all the high schools in the province.

“I hope to get other provincial governments to do the same.

“Several of them are emphasising human resource development and providing free education for students in their provinces, but they cannot guarantee them jobs.

“This book will really complement their efforts.”

Success after Graduation covers 13 subjects which Kuimbakul believes students, school-leavers and young people in general need to know about what life is like after school.

He discusses these issues, like finding a job, succeeding in work, planning for early retirement, creating your own job, and many others.

“I wrote the book because I realised that most students and young people do not get much if any advice on the matters I cover in the book,” Kuimbakul explains.

“Many parents in PNG are illiterate and do not have any working experience, or are unemployed, so they do not provide advice and guidance to their children on the matters addressed in the book.

“Other parents are too busy with work and business that they neglect their kids.

“This is evidenced by so many children of successful people being on the streets.

“So I wrote the book to provide sound advice on real-life issues affecting young people, especially as they leave school and enter the job market.

“My target group is young people in general, which covers students, especially those in secondary school, college and university; school-leavers, the unemployed as well as those who are working.”

Kuimbakul, 41, is from Mount Hagen in the Western Highlands, however, graduated with an honours degree in economics from University of Papua New Guinea in 1988.

Kuimbakul has worked as an economist with the Department of Agriculture & Livestock (1989-1990); assistant Export Manager with Coffee International Limited (1991-1992); economist and general manager of Industry Affairs Division, Coffee Industry Corporation (1993-1999); export Manager with Kongo Coffee Limited (2000); and freelance consultant (2001-2007).

He currently manages a coffee marketing project, advises two community development associations in Western Highlands Province, does church work, writes and publishes books, conducts seminars, and speaks to students and young people when he gets the opportunity.

“I have just completed my second book, which is titled ‘Young Money: What Every Working Person Needs To Know And Do To Achieve Financial Independence And Freedom’,” Kuimbakul continues.

“It talks about how people can succeed financially.

“The premise of the book is that academic and professional success does not equate to financial success.

“It should be on the market in late March/early April 2007.

“I am also nearly finished with my third book titled ‘Be Your Own Boss!’.

“It discusses more than 30 reasons why people should seriously consider becoming self-employed/going into business.

“I think it will blow the minds of thousands of working people in the country.“I am aiming for it to be published in May 2007.”

Kuimbakul plans to write several more books over the next four years.

“By the time I am through, I will have covered the following areas: school, professional success, financial management, business and investing,” he says.

“In case you and others wonder why I want to write so many books, I would like to let you know that I have a vision for the future, which concerns empowering young people to become entrepreneurs.

“The vision is to develop and run an entrepreneurship school in the country for school drop-outs.

“I will use the books as resource material to develop a training manual and programme, and conduct training in conjunction with churches in the country.

“The motto of the programme will be ‘Turning Failure Into Success’.

“The programme will teach drop-outs and those who are labelled as failures, how to start their own businesses, as opposed to so-called business schools which teach people how to run other peoples’ businesses.

“The instructors will be successful business people who share a similar vision and are willing to give their time and knowledge for free, not textbook teachers.

“At the end of the training students will be required to develop business plans based on their own business ideas, which they have to defend before a committee.

“Whoever comes up with a bankable/viable plan and convinces the committee, will be funded from the proceeds of the books.

“The committee will provide on-going counselling, coaching and mentoring until the businesses are well-established.

“I hope that the program will produce many successful self-made business people in many parts of the country.

“This is the vision.

“This means that people who buy any of my books will buy into the vision and become partners with me in giving hope to as many of the hopeless young people we have on the streets of PNG today.

“ I do not know yet when the program will start.

“But that is the vision.”

Success after Graduation. By Tiri Kuimbakul. Self-published. Goroka, 2006. 151 pages. K40.

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