It's Not How Good You are, it's How Good You Want to be : The World's Best-Selling Book by Paul Arden, Paperback

It's Not How Good You are, it's How Good You Want to be : The World's Best-Selling Book by Paul Arden Paperback

3.5 out of 5 (2 ratings)


It's Not How Good You Are, It's How Good You Want to Be is a handbook of how to succeed in the world: a pocket bible for the talented and timid alike to help make the unthinkable thinkable and the impossible possible.

The world's top advertising guru, Paul Arden, offers up his wisdom on issues as diverse as problem solving, responding to a brief, communicating, playing your cards right, making mistakes, and creativity - all endeavours that can be applied to aspects of modern life.

This uplifting and humorous little book provides a unique insight into the world of advertising and is a quirky compilation of quotes, facts, pictures, wit and wisdom - all packed into easy-to-digest, bite-sized spreads.

If you want to succeed in life or business, this book is a must.


  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 128 pages, 40 illustrations, (some colour )
  • Publisher: Phaidon Press Ltd
  • Publication Date:
  • Category: Advertising
  • ISBN: 9780714843377



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Showing 1 - 2 of 2 reviews.

Review by

This is a little book, you can read it in an hour and maybe I should describe it as a cheeky little book. In the inside front cover it sets out to compare itself to Sun Tzu’s Art of War and Machiavellis The Prince as a metaphore for business. In my view it is not worthy of the comparison. But I still like the book because with the book the writer is living the key message of the book. To be big, good, great, you have to think yourself big, good, great, and that’s what the book does. It proudly claims to be ‘The world’s best-selling book by Paul Arden. For all I know this might be because it’s the only book by Paul Arden. But that doesn’t matter, it isn’t being deceitful, it’s the very point of the book. It presents itself as a best seller as part of becoming a best seller. I bought the book at the airport en route to a conference and I suspect that this bold claim tipped the balance in favour of selecting the book over others, so it works. So it’s a small book, easily read and cheeky. What else. Well it’s cheap (£4-95 in the UK) and does have one or two useful ideas. Often the lasting effect of a visit to a conference may be one or two new ideas, so at the price it’s a bargain. The book contains lessons, or thoughts from the experience of a marketing man. The final few pages began to feel specific to this target audience, but for the most part the thoughts are widely applicable. It’s nicely produced and has plenty of pictures again projecting the message ‘be what you want to become’.As an example of what you’ll read, I liked the thoughts about right being wrong being right. In a changing world if you think you know the right answer, then it’s highly likely to be wrong as the world will have changed since it was right. By the same token being wrong opens up the opportunity of trying new things and maybe becoming right.It won’t make a dent in your wallet or diary and perhaps contains nothing profound, but it illustrates how a simple message can be communicated in a straightforward and concise manner with style so that how you say reinforces what you say.

Review by

This is supposed to be a book for everyone, regardless of profession or background, but there’s a big focus on advertising and how to surpass demands in that field. I suppose if you’re just starting out on the job market, there’s plenty of good advice. Paul Arden is considered to be an advertising guru, so if you’re thinking of working in that field, you should make that little book your bible. Arden compares it to no less than Sun Tzu’s The Art of War. I’ll leave it up to you to decide whether the comparison is justified or not, but will say that having worked in that field for many years, I know from experience that advertisers are prone to exaggerating... just a tad.