Reading Habits of Malaysian Executives

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This study was undertaken to examine the reading habits and
interests of urban working professionals, executives and
managers in the Klang Valley. With an overall insight into the reading behaviour of this group, it is greatly hoped that there will be a greater awareness among corporate individuals and
organizations as regards the importance of reading in knowledge acquisition and knowledge management. Reading is a vital
behavioural factor in a knowledge-based society and an emerging knowledge economy.

A total of 153 responses were collected in this study.
Generally, the reading attitude is very encouraging and a wide variety of materials was read, ranging from local newspapers, magazines, journals and books to foreign publications. There are also significant relationships between the gender, race and

level of management of respondents and their reading pattern.
The results of this study indicated that seniority plays quite a major role in influencing the reading pattern.


"Malaysians should embrace reading as part of their lifestyle to become a truly knowledge-based society," Datuk Seri Najib Abdul Razak said at the Centennial Celebration Dinner of the MPH Group

The deputy prime minister said that once reading became part of one's life and formed a natural habit, the acquisition of knowledge would become easy -- something that is continuously accomplished without much conscious effort.

"This is the mindset that we want to instill in more Malaysians, the desire for continuous learning and quest for ever more knowledge. Unfortunately, the concept of reading as a lifestyle does not seem to be deeply rooted in Malaysia," he said

In fact, he said, reading seemed to have taken a back seat compared with television, films, the Internet and other forms of entertainment and he was disappointed to read the findings of a survey conducted last year which revealed that on average, Malaysians read only two books a year,

"The entire findings point to the sad fact that Malaysians do not read enough, and even if they do read, they stick to light material like newspapers and magazines," he said, lamenting the fact that books have been ranked third in terms of preferred reading material among Malaysians.

Najib said the findings revealed that there was still much room for improvement in terms of shaping the minds and attitudes of Malaysians.

"We still have a long way to go before we can truly lay claim to having a knowledgeable society," he said.

Najib said the statistics also indicated that reading was a habit that was more exposed in an effluent society concentrated in urban areas while the rest of the country still regarded reading as a chore.

Realising this pattern, the government has undertaken an ambitious programme to encourage Malaysians to embrace reading as a habit and personal culture.

This included embarking on a reading campaign spanning five years with allocations up to RM50 million while undertaking various other measures and introducing numerous incentives towards encouraging Malaysians to read.

He also called on various corporations to foster the reading habit by supplying books to the public as well as making accessible the latest and most celebrated books and literary works for Malaysians to enjoy.

Objective of the study

Many studies have been done on the subject of reading habits and they involved different categories of individuals. With this interest in mind, our group also conducted a study to investigate the reading habits of Malaysian executives which include the working professionals, executives and managers within the Klang Valley only.

This study aimed to gather and analyse relevant data that will provide the necessary information so that a description of the reading activity of professionals, executives and managers can be obtained and inferences on the relationship between variables...
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