10 Must-Read Books | Humankind C.O.O.

Ben Thankachan | Humankind

Ben Thankachan | Humankind

My 2017 year end statement from American Airlines showed me some interesting stats:

  • 132 hours in the sky

  • 2 times flown around the world (in miles)

  • 15 destinations visited

Although there are many people that spend more time than I do on the road, I still feel the strain of being away from home quite often and I do whatever it takes to maintain the purpose and balance I feel from being around my family.  One way that I am able to restore some of that purpose and balance is to dive into a great book, and often I am asked what books I take on the road with me.


Here are my top 10 books I have loaded onto my Kindle:


1. The BibleWith drama, intrigue, espionage, sex, adultery, and wisdom that transcends any generational limitations; this book surpasses all others in what it has to offer for many reasons!

The Blessed Life.jpg

2. The Blessed Life - Robert Morris: Next to the Bible – by FAR my FAVORITE book ever, it has changed my life forever and opened up my mind to my true purpose in life.


3. Captivating - Stasi and John Eldredge: Every woman needs to read this book. Every man that wants to live life with a female – NEEDS TO READ THIS BOOK!


4. Unbroken - Laura Hillenbrand: The most unbelievable story of human perseverance that I have ever read. I started reading this on a plane with my wife reading over my shoulder, she ripped the book away from me when I attempted to put it down so I could sleep. It is the most riveting autobiography I have EVER read.


5. The Hole in Our Gospel - Richard Stearns: This book flipped the script for me, especially since I had spent 17 years in corporate America. Richard Stearns walks away from “what most of us aspire to become within corporate America” in exchange for embracing his God-given purpose.


6. Phoenix Island - John Dixon: If you like MMA and Fight Club type stuff, you won’t be able to put this book down. The author does an amazing job painting a vivid picture of this gladiator style environment that had me captivated from the first chapter. I can’t explain why but this book is one of my favorite books that I can’t put down (Plus the guy is from Philly to begin with and who doesn’t love a great action story about a street fighter from Philly??).


7. The Prayer of Jabez - Bruce Wilkinson: if you want a simple tiny book that can be read over and again (in minutes) about a guy you have never heard of from the Bible – this is the book for you. Jabez was insignificant in the grand scheme of the Bible, but the short prayer he prays is one that inspires many to this day.


8. Now Discover Your Strengths - Marcus Buckingham & Donald O. Clifton:  I am one of those people that CAN’T STAND all those stupid books, every mid-level manager to high level Executive is supposed to have read, that sit perched on their bookshelves in their office. This book is not one of those books, rather it explains how from the time we are very young we are forced to focus on becoming well balanced and to bring all areas of our lives into at least a place of competency or mediocrity. This book teaches you to focus on what comes naturally to you and to work on developing what inherently you know deep down to be your “strengths”.  This book has been freeing for me – as it proves to me that I should NOT be trapped in an office M-F or forced to develop spreadsheets…


9. Love Does - Bob Goff:  The author, Bob Goff, is a genius who doesn’t take no for an answer and his unconventional approach has inspired me so much. God got a hold of his life and flipped it upside down. Bob tells his own story in a tremendously humorous yet effective way, and it challenges you to think differently about why God has put you in the places He has and what LOVE truly can look like when it takes on the form of an action word.


10. Rich Dad, Poor Dad - Robert Kiyosaki & Sharon Lechter: I first read this book 20 years ago when I started my career with Walmart Stores Inc. It only has taken me 20 years to fully embrace what I knew to be true back then. Here is my guidance: Read this book about ownership & entrepreneurship and please put it into practice much quicker than I did…


Thank you,

Ben Thankachan


Ben is the COO (Chief Optimism Officer) of Humankind water and is a licensed pharmacist and serial entrepreneur.

His life was significantly affected by going on a mission trip to Zambia in 2007. It was there in Africa that he experienced first hand how life altering access to clean water can be.

Ben spent the first 17 years of his career working in various levels of management for Walmart Stores Inc, and recently “retired” as the Vice President for Health and Wellness at Sam’s Club.

Ben spends his free time cheering for the Philadelphia Iggles & Miami Hurricanes, and forcing his 2 beautiful children, Liliana and Beniah, to cheer for those same two perennial champions. He is married to the gorgeous love of his life, Liz, who has been blessed with an abundance of the many qualities he sorely lacks.

Ben, Liz, Lily and Niah live in a suburb of Charlotte, NC and are privileged to be able to partner with various ministries and organizations that help to empower the underservedacross the world.


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