I was introduced to the wonderful David García González by previous guest, Martin Norbury, whose team raved about what a great guest David would be. They weren’t wrong! David García González runs a company called GoLocalise, a localisation company which specialise in translation, subtitling and voice-overs. David has won multiple awards as an entrepreneur, including National Entrepreneur of the Month, Outstanding Entrepreneur in the Global Business Excellence Awards and also Most Inspiring Member in the Entrepreneur’s Circle in 2015. He is currently promoting his new book, Child-biting, Chorizo and Chancing Your Arm: How I Made it Big in Britain, a book that follows his entrepreneurial adventure after moving to London from Spain. After speaking with David, one thing is clear, he is passionate about sharing his expertise and supporting fellow entrepreneurs. It is great to have him on the website, and I think any entrepreneur will really enjoy this one. So, here it is, my interview with the lovely David García González…
When someone asks you ‘what do you do for a living?’ – how do you respond?
I help businesses of all sizes communicate their messages effectively in over 100 languages in any media or content. I am the CEO and founder of GoLocalise, a localisation company specialising in the audiovisual field (translation, subtitling and voice-overs).
At the moment I am reading How To Be F*cking Awesome by Dan Meredith, a real kick up the backside with tons of motivational tips and advice. No sugar coating happening in this book!
When you think about your childhood, what book comes to mind?
One of my favourite books growing up, and still is The Neverending Story by Michael Ende, a German author. It is a magical story where books are portals to other dimensions, and the scariest and most important thing we can do is look within. Even the most massive of failures make room for massive new beginnings. Nothing but a grain of sand from which the new Fantasia can be built. Out of the most massive failure an entire new world can be grown from a single grain, if the main character but puts to use his incredible powers of imagination.
What did you want to be when you were growing up?
When I was a child, I kept on saying to people that I wanted to be a millionaire. I always wanted to have a good life, with no money worries, have a nice house and be able to help my family and friends.
What do you think your school aged self would think of the present day you?
Wow… I really don’t know. Never thought I would be living in the UK, and making London my home. I think my younger self would be like “what the… how did that happen? How did a young kid from Northern Spain make it all the way to London and set up a successful business? I’d probably be thinking “wow my English must be OK at least”.
If you could wrap up a single book and gift it to yourself as you left education – which book would it be?
Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill is a true masterpiece with the fundamentals of the success philosophy. The book talks about how a person with desire, faith, and persistence can reach great heights by eliminating all negative energy and thoughts and focusing at the greater goals in hand.
Does your reading have routine? Is there a particular time or place that you like to read?
I read when I go to bed during the week or at weekends. I love reading in my super comfy armchair with my dog Rambo on my feet. It’s “me” time, and I guess also some time for Rambo to cuddle up with me.
Which book has had the biggest impact on your career so far?
The 4-Hour Workweek by Timothy Ferriss. This book has provided me with tons of practical tips and case studies from readers who have doubled income, overcome common sticking points, and reinvented themselves using this book as a starting point. An amazing book, I have always been a bit of a control freak, wanting to do everything myself… this book has really taught me how to wisely outsource and get things done.
Do you have any books that you strongly associate with someone important in your life?
Screw It, Let’s Do It by Sir Richard Branson. Richard Branson is one of my idols, and I love how he explains through his numerous stories how he was able to stand out from the crowd and create a name for himself with a very daring company name “Virgin”, truly inspirational entrepreneur and person that I admire!
My own book Child-biting, Chorizo and Chancing Your Arm: How I Made It Big in Britain that was launched this year in April. I am still amazed how people that I have just met know very intimate details of my life, my business or my career. It’s a good feeling when you start a conversation and someone says “I already knew that, I read that in your book”, and then I smile.
Do you prefer fiction or non-fiction?
It really depends on the moment, I love sci-fi and superheroes… I am a Marvel addict. So if I want to unwind and relax I tend to read either comics or superhero books. But lately, I have been fascinated by tons of business books where I got great tips for my business and also for my personal development.
Do you think reading is important?
Is this even really a question? I would say “Duh”… joking aside, I would not be the person I am today if it was not for reading tons of books and meeting like-minded professionals. As they say “who you hang around matters”.
What’s the best book you’ve read in the last 6 months?
The Rise of the Robots by Martin Ford. In Rise of the Robots, entrepreneur Ford argues that technology continues to accelerate and machines begin taking care of themselves, fewer people will be necessary. Rise of the Robots is essential reading for anyone who wants to understand what accelerating technology means for their own economic prospects not to mention those of their children, as well as for society as a whole.
Do you prefer real books or digital books?
I like reading physical books, I like how they feel when I hold them in my hands. However I also love my Kindle, I generally read 3-4 books at one given time, so it is more practical to read digital books, especially when travelling. Imagine how heavy my carry-on would be otherwise…
Name a book that you feel every human should have to read by law.
The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho. This book is a beautiful tale about learning to listen to your heart, read the omens strewn along life’s path and, above all, follow your dreams. Santiago, a young shepherd living in the hills of Andalucia, feels that there is more to life than his humble home and his flock. One day he finds the courage to follow his dreams into distant lands, each step galvanised by the knowledge that he is following the right path: his own. The people he meets along the way, the things he sees and the wisdom he learns are life-changing.
Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap… And Others Don’t by Jim Collins. Good to Great was one of the first transformative books I read as my company GoLocalise started to grow. This happened when I started to feel like we needed to think about “culture”, a concept that I previously had no real way to understand apart from conceptually. As the team grew, I noticed that team dynamics came into play much more, and I realised that the people we work with affect us immensely.
Good to Great helped me to understand how important culture is for building a great, lasting company that has an impact on the world. Perhaps one of the most difficult yet crucial learnings for me from Good to Great was that there will be people whose values don’t align with the culture we create, and who will do better and thrive in a different company rather than staying on as part of GoLocalise. Asking these people to leave is one of the hardest things I’ve had to learn how to do, and something that has made GoLocalise what it is today.
Are there any books you haven’t mentioned that you feel would make your reading list?
Wow… there are so many. I love reading!
What books or subject matter do you plan on reading in the next year?
I want to learn more about digital marketing, relationships and personal development books; how to motivate, engage and effectively manage people. Entrepreneur Revolution: How to develop your entrepreneurial mindset and start a business that works by Daniel Priestley. Really cannot wait to get my teeth into it!
If you were to write an autobiography – what would it be called?
My current book Child-biting, Chorizo and Chancing Your Arm is an autobiographical book with tons of lessons learnt along the way and tons of language curiosities. It starts when I was a naughty and rebellious child to becoming a successful business owner in a foreign country. It tells my story of business and personal success against all odds. It’s a very honest account of my journey, and you’ll discover how an ordinary person can become a high achiever and do amazing things. By reading this book and applying its lessons, one can become bulletproof in life and in business. It’s a candid, witty and irreverent autobiography that gives you a rare insight into what it takes to translate your life and circumstances into success.