Most days we CEOs are caught up fighting fires, initializing paperwork, running to and from meetings and, well, running, running, running. At the end of each day, we are often spent, exhausted, and, frankly, glad to be out of the building! So why would any self-respecting chief executive choose to jump into an even deeper time and energy suck like the prospect of writing a book? What good would it do you? Why should your company care?
The truth is there are many good reasons to write and publish books (yes, plural … more than one!). Benefits will accrue not only to you the book’s author but also to the firm and everyone employed by it. Customers and clients too can be swept up into the positive fray. Consider these probable outcomes:
There is little in business comparable to the excitement that develops when someone has published a book. Your company will thus benefit as your new book expands its notoriety.
Visibility and buzz are one thing but how customers and prospects actually feel about a company is quite another, and frequently a far more significant connection. Reputation, the essence of brand, holds the capacity to draw buyers your way vs. instill them with satisfying vibes that will keep them coming back again and again as well as sending their friends, families, colleagues etc., to your door. By manifesting the good works described or implied in your book, buyers of your product or service testify proudly that their commercial association with you is a worthwhile one.
There’s nothing like the process of writing to bring forth more clarity with regard to your own understanding of your writing’s subject matter, which in this case will always be, one way or another, what your company does and how it does it. Just as public speaking forces us all to think quickly on our feet, so too does writing demand a deeper level of knowledge and insight in order to refine our intended messages. Thus both CEO and company discover newer and better ways to communicating company value.
Everyone looks to the decision-maker at the top as the “thought leader” in all company matters, for good or for ill. Though this perception is an impossible one for any one human being to fulfill, writing and publishing a book tends to upgrade the writer’s “confidence quotient” while de-stressing daily large or small interactions. Because you, their CEO, has invested the time to think through, analyze, and articulate big-picture problems that your company aims to solve, you become equipped on a higher level perspective-wise to deal with what are often confusing sometimes hourly challenges.
Of course, despite all the above advantages, writing and publishing a book is nonetheless a daunting and time-consuming endeavor indeed. But as with most things in life, happy endings as a result of book authorship will frequently result only after a hard literary struggle and climb. But if the commitment is fully and truly made, then you the new author will soon be enjoying a new lease on your professional life, as well as sitting on a higher rung on the competitive ladder of your company’s industry.
PS: Meeting such a challenge may even inspire you to consider and eventually embark upon a seemingly even crazier challenge: the writing and publishing of book #2!
Ken Lizotte CMC is Chair of the CEO Club of Boston, a branch of CEO Clubs International, and Chief Imaginative Officer (CIO) of emerson consulting group inc., which transforms business consultants, CEOs, attorneys, finance experts and other business leaders and their companies into published “thought leaders.” Author of 8 books including The Expert’s Edge: Become the Go-To Authority that People Turn to Every Time (McGraw-Hill), Ken has been interviewed by The Wall Street Journal, National Public Radio, Fortune, Business Week, Investors Business Daily, Financial Times and many more. A Certified Management Consultant, he has penned columns for Huffington Post, the American Management Association and Boston Magazine. Ken’s keynote and training clients include multiple appearances at Harvard University, the Concord Festival of Authors and the National Speakers Association; the 2017 Microsoft MVP Conference; the CEO Club of New York City; IMC USA; and retreats and conferences sponsored by private companies, nonprofits, professional service firms and national business associations. A cofounder of the National Writers Union and past president of the Institute of Management Consultants (New England chapter), Ken is current pro bono president of Thoreau Farm Trust, the birthplace of Henry David Thoreau. He lives with his family in Concord, Massachusetts.