Jannie Mouton – Full Length Video Interview and Transcript

Jason: I was quite excited to see when I read your book… I do this thing as well, apparently you do as well, where you highlight all the aspects and then give them that to summarize.

Jannie: But I don’t highlight things in my book.

No, well, obviously not in your book.

I’m supposed to know what’s in my book!

Exactly! (chuckles) Have you used a Kindle or an e-book reader?

Uh…no… I know it exists, I know it’s taking over but, uh, I’m still reading books… not on the Kindle.

I do as well. It’s probably about 30% that and 30% Kindle. But what’s nice about the Kindle is that you can highlight straight away.

Ok.

And then it pulls it into another word doc.

So then you can highlight it and almost print it off?

Straight away, print it out.

Ok, because that would be wonderful because I often will read and then I want to pull out some stuff… like for instance last night, I was reading this stuff on ?? and now I want to summarize it, the things that I’ve learned.

Yeah.

Actually right at the back, I’ve actually marked it, you know, what the CEO of a company should do. Now, I’ve summarized it in point-form. I would love to pull it up. And what I now do, I highlight it myself and have my secretary type it.

The way, what I did… the first book I ever did that to was Stephen Covey’s book, “The Eighth Habit.” I don’t know if you’ve read it? But I summarized it…

Yes, I know most of his books.

Yeah? But then I typed it up myself, and it probably took about a year for that entire process, because it was quite a deep, technical book. So I just summarized it. And then… most other books would take maybe a week to type up, because you’re doing it ? as a unit. But with the Kindle it’s just fantastic because it’s straight done.

Mm-hmm. Yeah, I see.

Can we start off, because one thing that is great about you is you’re just continuously learning and progressing, and this is one of the questions I asked at the back – or, towards the end – because you’ve got the book ?? How many books do you read, kind of in a week, or very single month? It is an ongoing process that you just keep on reading? Or is it just something that you absolutely just enjoy and you just have this desire to keep learning?

Ok, I think it is not a written program. I invest in business books and books about people where you can learn something about life. It’s not always about business. And, you know, that’s what I like to read. But I read other stuff as well, like newspapers and I do sit and waste my time, watch a bit of TV, so it’s not that I read every day of my life. But I think the more you read, the more you understand what is going on around you in life. And then making the decisions.

And you said actually that the book by Napoleon, “Think and Grow Rich”… was… was that really kind of a threshold moment?

I think that when he… when he started Janegi financing to interact with successful people – keep in mind that it’s not only businessmen, it was medical doctors and actors and what in life… what made him stand out in life. And he started with the founding of Janegi and it kept him busy for the rest of his life. So he sort of analyzed people and he realized that if you know what you want to do in life. And you believe you are going to achieve it, you are 95% there. So it’s as simple as that. And there’s a beautiful story of his son that was blind and deaf and he thought that… he believed that his son would go to a normal school one day, so he taught him and let him believe that. So he went to a normal school, primary and secondary, and he went to a normal university with all those problems in life, and is today the Chairman of the worldwide institute of the blind and the deaf in the world.

Wow. And actually I have a comment of what Chris (?) said about you, as well, in terms of kind of your belief, where he calls you an unreasonable man. Where, if you think it, you can imagine it, you can see it, and you get other people to buy into that. Is that something you have worked on throughout your life? And you’ve kind of grown confidence in… or is it something that you…?

I think if you think something through, you discuss it with people and there’s merit it in then you must do it. You’ve can’t just do it with 75% of effort. You have to put 100% of effort into it, to do it. Now that might be… I don’t think I’m an unreasonable man, but that is…

A term of endearment, I would say…

Yeah, you have to also then execute what you believe. Otherwise it’s always a good story.

Ok. I want to, sorry, I was just bouncing around with some questions, I want to go back to the start. Where you founded SMK and then you had kind of a Steve Jobs moment, which you mentioned in the book, as well, which was your own moment as well but very similar to… where you got kicked out of your own company that you’d started. Can you talk us through that process because you went through quite a tough time and it’s something that a lot of people struggle with because they go through tough times and they don’t see the end… you know, they don’t have hope that can be better. And you kind of pulled yourself together and then started PSG which is…

There’s no doubt that it’s a tough time if it’s unexpected. In my incident, I didn’t expect it. I was the CEO and the company was successful at that point of my life. So I was scared. I was shocked and I was embarrassed and I was unemployed. Now, it was the first time ever something like that happened to me so it is a shock. At at that time I wasn’t prepared how to handle it. And I had to learn, over a 6-9 month period how to handle that. Now what, to summarize it, the first couple of months it was shock. So embarrassed that you can’t even tell your children or your family, about it. I told my wife about it. I told the outside world I’d resigned but I know the message travelled that I was fired. And then you realize it’s only you that can make a difference of what your life is – nobody else, only you. And I think if people understand that, whether they are fired, whether they start a career, it’s only you that can make a difference in your life.

Now you should know yourself, and analyze yourself and know exactly what you are capable of doing. For instance no way that I could do something like Steve Jobs did. I don’t have the technical knowledge. And I must realize it. I don’t have the technical knowledge to go into mining. So you have to look at what you can master, what are your strong points, what are your weak points. And then, I think, in a period like that, analyze yourself and read as much as possible. Because you have the opportunity to read. Now, if you read, you will see more opportunities in life. Because if you read about successful people you will see opportunities. So, it’s in every person…

Mm-hmm.

…whether they are young, or whether they are currently employed… who go through a process like that if they would like to better themselves.

And you also do mention that if you are trying to find out what you should do in life, or if you should follow something, you look at what you desire most, what your vision is and then do a SWOT analysis…

A SWOT analysis, talking about that… that’s an old MBA charter. But it worked, I think. I’m not [??] but you’ll always pick up something useful, and that is what was useful for me, to analyze myself. And, you know, you may have a friend. Or you may know about somebody who knows somebody that’s without work – I get enormous correspondence now and calls about people, almost on a daily basis,

that wants to discuss their lives with me. It’s difficult to really attend to everybody, but in general, to summarize, if you read enough you will find the picture. And then write it down, what you want to do. And then focus on that. You can’t do it half-heartedly. Focus on that. Go for it. You must observe the guts to go out and do something. And that’s why some people can call me “unreasonable”, something like that, because whatever the odds are, it’s difficult to start a bank in South Africa. [???] was the last bank started in South Africa. A new bank, I’m talking about.

Mm. And so, the people that are calling you… is it many for just advice on direction and in life? Or…?

It’s an unbelievable variety. It’s… yeah. Business opportunists, they want to discuss with me. Yeah. We can’t invest in everything so some people need advice about business opportunities. Some people may have financial problems and want to discuss it with you. We have a lot of people coming in here with fantastic ideas about charity… charitable situations. So they are people who struck some problem with their lives.

And now, today, PSG, is worth – last quoted in the book – is about 66 billion, responsible for almost 4,000 jobs.

Ok. What we’ve seen, we have PSG, and PSG has various investments in other companies, like for instance [companies] ??? If you add… in PSG group, there’s about 14 people working there. But in the various businesses we have invested in, there’s about 40 thousand.

And the current evaluation?

Of all the groups? All the companies? There’s about 61 billion.

Can I ask – and this might seem a stupid question – but how does that feel?

You know, to be honest, I like coming to work. This is my office. I’m living 4km from here. It’s wonderful. What else would I do? There’s no garden in mine. We don’t sit and think about luxury. We think, “Is there something else that is interesting that we as a group can do about achieving”. And, you know, through just one incident, and this is through the book, the school for the blind and the deaf invited me in ?? (and people that’s mentally retarded, too) to come and talk to them. Yeah, they actually caught me, in a way, because they were nice to me and said that they would translate the book into Braille. So I had to say yes.

That’s incredible!

Yeah, if it’s in Braille, it’s a big book… Why this is? You know, I met people there. Because they took us through the operation. I’ve seen blind persons, one class, how they learn to write in Braille, on the machine. And I saw one class, the orientation, various ways to learn, you know… the blind person, how to get to the bathroom, how to get in the dining room, how to get into his clothes and things like that. This “orientation”, what they call. And you know, a blind person can hear better because they hear something, they develop it, they can walk… (snaps fingers)… and when the sound comes back they know that there is a wall in front…

Really?

… a block, things like that. They can pick it up. And I’ve seen people working in the factory. And, you know, at the end of the day coming out of there, you realize how privileged you are. You can see, you can hear. And you’re not mentally… then you will never complain again.

Yeah.

So I often think how many people complain about things that happen. And they’re 100%normal. I will never complain again in my life.

Can I ask you… with your wisdom that you’ve got now, and what you’ve learned now, if you could go back and meet Jannie at 18 years old, would you give him advice? Would you steer him in a different direction? Or would you tell him to worry about certain things less?

Yeah I think that’s some-… I think at the end of the day, you have to learn yourself. But I think you can always make a… suggest to people to interact with what they like, because then they learn something. I would say the “brilliant student” who only sit at his computer and never interact with people, missed a lot in his life. He may get the best results, he may pass with ?? But there’s another part in life that he’s missed. And that is a very important part – interacting with people, discussing opportunities with people. You know, even… just think of yourself. If you want to start a business, you need people to join you. So you must have the talent to sell a dream to people to leave their current place of work to come to you. You need sometimes, to put your grace to a board of directors to convince them to support you. You sometimes have to interact with a bank, or finances to depend you. So that’s where a person who doesn’t interact in life loses out.
So I have always looked. And I look at people to draw in a balanced person.

And if could just go a little bit further on that, because one of the questions I wanted to ask is what is your recipe for success? Because you’ve obviously worked with a lot of companies, you’ve worked with a lot of CEOs, a lot of MDs, managers and businesses, and just interacting with people on a daily basis… What do you see that is different in the way that the people that live their lives who are very successful versus the people that don’t?

I think – and it’s not clear-cut, but – to a certain extent in business, I think you, number one, the most important ingredient in business is management. And I think management must have a sharing in the business. Decent investment in the business. So that they think as owners as not as employees. You know, I just think back and see the ?? of what ?? that people are getting and they took tremendous risk. If it comes off, they get big bonuses… If it doesn’t come off, they say, “sorry boss, I made the wrong decision.” So, management is the most important. You must think as partners, not as employees. You must appoint brilliant people and they must make the decisions. They shouldn’t come to you because, once they have to come and explain it to you, what knowledge do you have? They have to run the business and you must support them 100%. And I almost call it “ultimate empowerment”. You must appoint the right people and judge… leave the judgement to them. And I’ve just… you must realize you can’t do anything… you can’t be an expert in banking or in wine or food production or schooling or ? banking… It’s impossible. You must have the right people. Yeah, sometimes you must inspire them. They may have bad times and then you must be there. You help them. Give them good opportunities. And at the end of the day enjoy working with them.

In terms of making your staff partners rather than just working for you, this is something that has interested me quite a bit. And I can understand when you get to being in a much bigger company you can go shares but for your advice for smaller companies, or small start-ups, is that still possible, I mean, for example, I’ve got 10 staff members. I don’t know if you’ve even thought of it, but at that kind of level, is it still possible to do that?

It varies from company to company. It’s just as difficult whether you have 10 employees or 1,000. You have to think about it and run it as such. And you must, every day, think about it. And, yes, there are people that has a humble role in the company, for instance, the person who’s making the tea. But let them feel good. Show them that. There was a [?] that has been with us the last 10-13 years. She was poor. She stayed in a car, no house… now she has a house, kids are at school in a decent school. And you know, you take the people with you. Yes, everybody can’t be the marketing director or the idea guru or the CEO. Yes, it’s a role, but each and every one forms a team.

Ok. And you talk about the culture that you’ve created here, which is, you said, spurred on by entrepreneurship, adventure, opportunity, [?], accountability, honesty and responsibility. So it’s very much… it’s the kind of “give them freedom but also hold them accountable as well”. Are there certain things you as a company do to ensure that that culture stays there? Or is it just…?

It’s difficult, but I know exactly what you’re referring to. A company will only survive if it’s creative. The world is changing. So you have to be creative – whatever you call it… you have to stay with new developments in life and, at least, you must understand that right. So, it’s a challenge. The next challenge is to keep the people looking at changes, opportunities, and bring it in to discuss it. You must encourage them. And you must encourage people to be enthusiastic, as well. Let them come to you with ideas, and each and every idea… sometimes it just doesn’t make sense. But other times you look at the alternative. To encourage them, then to say, “No it won’t work, it’s a simple idea.” Others say, “Have you ever thought of adding that or this, or…” I am totally against people, whenever I put something on the table, that say, “No it can’t work.” You must give me an alternative.

Ok. Two questions I want to ask, one is looking at the behaviours and habits of people that are successful. But if we take a step back and look then at the way that people think. And which is something that Napoleon Hill obviously focuses a lot on. Do you see that there’s a difference in, just like the way you’re talking now… you always see that there is a way that we can do something where there is an alternative. We need to find solutions. Are there any other things that come to mind that you think are important to the way that successful people think? And not only…

Ok, ok… one word that comes up clear in my life is focus. And you can keep that in mind for the rest of your life. If there is something you want to do – an idea or a business proposition or whatever – focus. Eat, drink and live it till it is in place and working. And I’ve seen that… a good example, sorry, to use around [?] is Capitec. The people are very focused there and it’s a very successful operation. So you shouldn’t jump from one thing to another, from one idea to another. You often get that amongst people, your friends. They are dreamers. There’s nothing wrong – each and every one is different, but a dreamer will never excel in life. Because he will jump from one thing to another. Focus is the….

Ok. In terms of kind of the way that the things that people do… and maybe we could ask what is the typical day in your life?

My life is relaxed. I come to work at 9:00am and usually leave at, say, 4:00pm… But if need be, sometimes I will work later. If need be. And even at home in the evenings I often think about the company. When I was younger I worked longer hours, and each and every night I was thinking… So a successful person, forget about myself now… I was just reading the other day… work in day time at this company, and at night time dream about the company. So, you know, even this morning I was thinking of a specific opportunity… so I came straight to Pete? and said, “When I was [?] 10-9 and we discussed it from 10-9 to 10 past 10. So, yeah… I like what I’m doing. I like it unbelievable. I’m lucky in life. Everybody with me is my friends. And there is, in the bigger group, a tremendous lot of… number of people that I know, and their children, working here.

Mm.

I think in total, there’s about 30 youngsters in the bigger group that I know there as well.

Wow. And if you look back over your career so far, and your life, what other things that stand out that you’re most proud of and that excites you when you think about them? And they don’t necessarily need to be achievements, but…

Well, you know, at the end of the day, to be happy with what you’re doing because each and every day amongst your friends to talk about your company and that is not the way I would ever do it because we talk about general things in life, but for me, it’s what I wanted to do. I’m a fortunate man. My family’s in the business as well, on merit. There’s no nepotism on something like that. And I like it like that and I think I’m privileged.

And if we can talk about investing for a moment, because you obviously are incredibly good at that. Any advice for young amateur investors? But the one thing I did want to ask you, as well, which goes against everything that my… kind of, normal society says, is that you borrow to invest and you borrow to buy shares and you don’t sleep well if you don’t feel that you’re in debt. But obviously that’s a very calculated risk where you…

Yeah, yeah… I won’t recommend that whatsoever for young people. Yes, why I do that? Because I spent a lifetime in investments, even at school, university. I have read everything I could about investments. I was a stock broker for 13 years. Keep in mind it was my vision to become a stock broker, so by investing I think that one should realize that if you make the right investment decisions, it will make a difference in your life, financially, over a life time. So I’m very keen that young people should, at a very young age, start investing and not spending everything that you earn. If you start investing in a disciplined way, at a young age, it will make an enormous difference. We have little tables here that can prove that if you start investing at the age 25, by the age 65 what then you would have unbelievable [.. when you were young to ??] And investing, yeah. Everybody’s not an expert. But then you make a point of making friends with an expert or somebody that can help you. For me, it’s become easy… and why? Because that’s what I was hoping for… 40 years. I still like it. I made my first investments when I was [?] clerk and… nothing. I start investing. Yeah, and I made mistakes as well. I’ve learned others’ mistakes as well.

So in terms of trying to teach your kids… and I think your kids would be maybe different because you give them slightly different advice, but if you’re speaking to a father who’s got young children, how would you tell him that he should teach his kids? And when you say, kind of, it’s important to be disciplined about investing, so if it gets… does he get pocket money or does he need to earn his own pocket money?

I think it’s a mixture. That’s a good topic for their age. It is a mixture of, from a young age, trying to tell little children to save something. At a young age, try then to learn this should be the discipline of working at that. We, myself and my two sisters, had to work from Grade 8, at the old age then of 16, at my father’s shop. So, I did. Of the 6-week holiday I had to work from beginning of December till Christmas, it was three weeks and it was, for 5 years in a row. Yes. And you learn a lot. You learn the value of money. You learn… I think you have to make decisions in your life. Whether you’re going to spend it on an overseas trip or a new cellphone or this or that. Now, I am a man… you have to enjoy yourself as well. Because if you sit with all the money and you never see the world or ever travel, then you also miss something, to a degree. So it is balance, but I think… encourage people to buy shares, and they start looking in the newspaper each and every day and reading over here and over there and talking… and at the end of the day you can ask three sensible people to give me three good long-term shares of something like that. A good share will always do better than the South African economy and it’s something if you need money you can sell it and within 24 hours have almost the money back if there’s a crisis. But sometimes when you’re dealing with a property, it can take longer.

So, do you think property versus shares… they play a different role, and you need a balance? Or…?

You’re talking to the wrong man…

(chuckles)

I’ve never been successful in property.

Ok.

I’ve tried it once or twice, I don’t actually understand…

Ok. And I don’t know if there’s anything more that you can say, but I invest in a policy. Over 5 years the money’s only grown about 16%. And then when I was reading your book I saw that if I’d invested money in 1995 – you had a figure of $100,000, around – it would grow into $88,000,000 by… which is something that I love to tell people because every time I ask them, “Guess how much that would be worth now?” they come back with, “a couple hundred grand.” But in terms of picking shares, because that is obviously a phenomenal growth, is it just, as you say, speaking to people looking at the financial reports… what are other things that people should look at when they’re evaluating a company to make sure they’re making the right decision?

It’s difficult to give you a full talk about investments. I think for somebody not having all the knowledge that they must not invest in one share and not borrow against it. Now, a friend of mine said to me, he’s an interesting guy, the other day, “Jannie, I understand you better now. You put all your eggs in one basket but then you carry it yourself. That makes it different. Otherwise…” Now, I have another friend, he asked me 10 years ago… I had to give him advice about this, and I said, “I don’t do that anymore. I used to do that. But at the end of the day, I said to him, Ok. Invest in the following stocks because you know that people invest in PSG and in Capitec. He knows that people have Capitec. He knows that people [???] And he knows that [???] And that’s a good spread. And that was 5 winters over a 10 year period. And things like that… so, you can… I would spread the risk a bit by investing in more than one share.

Ok. Is there any great advice that you’ve received just about investing or money?

I think the best advice that I’ve received is from my father… [??]. And I’ve learned a lot from him… to start early in your life and then you’ll almost learn through experience because you’ll tend to watch your portfolio on a weekly, monthly basis. And there’s no doubt, try to [???] that is the way to be. Yeah, property is there but it’s difficult. It’s more difficult. Property tends to be overvalued. If you buy a house it will go well but if you buy a house for speculation purposes the return is 3-4% because you have to insure it and you have to pay real-estate taxes and things like that.

Ok. This is a funny question, but, I ask it to everyone that I interview just to find out… do you have any quotes or anything that makes you slightly different to anybody else or things that you do that you’re obsessive about? Or things that you love to do that most people don’t?

It’s not… I never actually thought about that. In the form of a quote… all I can say… it gives me a wonderful sense of confidence if you are successful, but you have to be humble to be respected by others.

Ok. and then what would you say is the meaning of life? What this is all about? Why we are….

That’s an unbelievable question. Number one, it’s not money. It’s health, happiness, good relations with your children and grandchildren… good relationships with your friends. But I told my mother when I was still young… she always told me to do things, “Jannie, life is not about money or things like that. You know, you may suffer or you may have a problem,” and always said that, “Well if I have to suffer one day, I will suffer in comfort.” And you know, I’ve learned. I’ve lost family members. And I know how tough it is. It’s nothing that you can compare money about personal tragedies. It’s nothing that can compare there. But enough of that, even in situations like that you have to pull yourself together and have your head and go on with life.

I’m sorry… I wanted to bounce back to another question, because I’m ending off on the deeper questions, but I don’t want to end with this question. You are a great negotiator. Do you have any advice to people on how to be a good negotiator?

Ok, you said that. I have never realized that. I think you must know what you want to achieve. You must be honest to the other person and what it should be, it should be a win-win. Then if that is your starting point… I read the other day or last night, [??] that down. The sellers had the confidence of three potential buyers. The seller must be happy and the buyer must be happy. It must be a fair transaction. And there must be no hiding truths or anything like that. So, if you go openly and honestly into a transaction. Most of the time I’m able to do it, to convince people that it’s in their interest as well.

If there are three things that you think anyone watching this interview should start doing to improve their lives and to become happier and more successful, have better relationships, what do you think those three things are that they should start doing in their life?

I think number one should be interact with people because you only learn from people in life if you talk and discuss. And number two, analyze what is your strong points because all of us is not business people, some people can be [??] They see [??] understand your niche in life. And then, I’d say, put something in place that drives you to reach your fruition? Just don’t struggle no where and complain. And somebody that complains, spends his time… I’m actually fed up with South Africans sitting around the table telling me the bad things about South Africa. Because if it’s so bad then I will emigrate. It’s a land of opportunities here. But somebody asked me the other day, what will I do if they nationalize [??] that we just invested. Which is a private school in operation. And I said to them, then I will emigrate and use my rest of my life to do something positive there. But I don’t think it will happen. I put in on the scale, I think it’s in the vicinity of 5-10% that we will go the same as Zimbabwe. That’s a little… Maybe you should take out a little policy on that risk. Use the opportunity so you can take better money legally out of the country as an insurance policy against something. And then… because to sit here all day and night talking about everything’s that’s bad it’s unbelievable negative. And I told the people it’s impossible to start a Capitec in Germany or France. It’s been done there. You have to have opportunities like that. You can invest in farming land in Africa, now, because of this opportunity. Forget about buying something like that in America or Europe or things like that.

So I’m glad you brought this up because my next question is – and my feeling is the exact same thing, we’re also just… South Africans are too passive in making this country a better place. What do you think is one thing that we can all do, each day, to make South Africa a better place? Is it, like you said, just changing the way we think and talk…?

My simple answer to that is I will focus on what we can do well and that is to start businesses and employ people. And if you just take PSG out of the picture, my story is [??] They employ 100,000 people now. It’s a company that’s started, they employ [??] thousand people. They pay taxes to the government in income tax. They assemble a lot of sales tax and they sell something in Africa so they must be a benefit for society. And they employ people and pay taxes. I often say that a successful company or a successful business is not a drag on society, it’s a benefit to society. So you must encourage companies like that to grow. The informal trader must be encouraged to develop his business because then you… a lot of… South Africa will be a better place in years to come. I’m worried about the role, sometimes, of the trade unions because they represent people that are working, they don’t represent people that are unemployed. And the more they put pressure on wages and close the entrepreneurial operation, that’s not typical of what should happen.

You’ve written… I’m finishing up now… You’ve written an entire book , you’ve got a lot of wealth of information in your head, is there something that you think I haven’t touched on that I should have? That you’d like to share?

On the book… I have done two books that I never sold in my life. And I say in the forward, I think, that it’s arrogant to write a book about yourself. I have no financial gain out of the book, nothing whatsoever. It’s {person} and {person} – they did that, they came to see me on more than one occasion and, at one stage, I said yes I will do that, maybe it can mean something to somebody and doing something again for myself and I have no intention to publish it.

What is that?

That’s, uh, something like what I’ve learned in life. It’s not only… Yeah, for sure. It will be business relations that I’ve learned in life, what is more than business relations. You know, this [?] society how you should approach and be helping other people and on a personal note, what was my mentors, who did I learn the most from, things like that. Some softer issues as well.

And just out of interest why wouldn’t you publish that? That could be… I mean, this book I learned a lot from, so… I mean that book…

You know, seeing how the interaction of the book, I may do that but you must be pretty much sure of yourself otherwise it can look arrogant.

Ok.

But, I’d like to do that. I like to read books like that. Anything I pick up in the newspaper…

I’ve done a hundred business relations already. I’m going to expand and do greater but it won’t take overnight… [looking through papers] where is this? This is in Afrikaans….

Is that what you’ve put together yourself?

Yep.

Wow.

I start one by one…. that was in ’83… that was 05 March. And now I have to do something on the 13th of June. And now one hundred and nine… but sometimes it’s just a idea that I have to do something… Now, it’s for me.

But with respect, though, it’s not for you… it’s your legacy that you can help so many people.

So… yeah on that note, you have to take your time, no one is going to rush me….

(chuckles)

I want how I want, how I see. I want to [?] read, too. In a few months I’ll have it. The secretary has everything… I must learn to type as well, it will help [secretary's name] a lot because she can’t read my hand-writing.

(chuckles)

Ok, at the end of the story, I like to have it, sort of, there in December holidays and then I will sit back and go through it and there’s nothing that’s going to hurry…

Do you know, what you can do as well… I don’t know if you prefer… do you talk to her and she types? Or do you write it down. Because what you can do, you can also record the audio of it… because there are some great services online that charge about 100 rand for an hour’s audio and they type up the transcript for you.

(inaudible) Now this one [looking at a book] I was at my 60th birthday and I invited 110 couples, my friends. I said nobody must give me a present or a gift whatsoever, and they must write me a story and if you tell people to write a story it’s incredible difficult. They think, “Jan it’s pathetic!” Then, I said, “Ok, in a month, start. I would like to receive it after a month.” Of the 110, I had about 15 stories. But I said to everyone, “yeah it’s been fantastic, [??] I was lying. [-- a few sentences here that I don't understand --]

(chuckles) (inaudible)

So, at the end of the day, I got almost 100 stories and then the guys that refused I read The Tomb of the Unknown Soldiers. [inaudible] But that’s interesting… if you have… and I told them not to write about me, but to write something about life. And I saw some unbelievable, wonderful stories by wonderful people….

Has this been published, then?

No, no, no ! This has not been published. It’s “published” like that… but what I did, I gave to each and every person attending, a book. And the other day they asked me for another one and I said… you would know a lot of the names, you know…

Mmm.

Well, it’s five special poets. By some fantastic poets. There’s Afrikaans there…

That’s so special.

And then this one I did when PSG was 10 years old and it was in ’95. Here I followed dozens of clients, I asked, I think, 40 guys in PSG to write me a story. And it was easier now…

‘Cause you’re the boss?

Yeah! It was… exactly! I had a bit of pressure… Yeah, and I got some wonderful stories and wrote a book about that. Now this… some interesting… And [?] who wrote that book, I had the privilege to go through this, a lot of these readings in here and the whole story about… it’s in here…

Yeah probably, because I was wondering if she interviewed a lot of people before that, so she probably got…

… It was an interesting person [??] who wrote it, because why? She at least made it easy for me. She read all the annual reports, she… everything that’s in the personal this or that, she picked up. So she did a lot of homework herself. And she went through those two books.

You should think about putting that all Online… If you don’t mind sharing it. Because, um, you’ll be able to give so many people incredible resource of information and wisdom and inspiration. Quite easily.

Well, Jason… thank you very much.

Jannie, I really appreciate your time!

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