Last month I wrote a post on the power of writing things down. Today I want to tackle writing from another angle and discuss how being a better writer can make you a better leader. It has certainly been proven true in my life. Now more than ever the way you communicate in writing is becoming the distinguishing factor in how effective you are as a leader.
- You think more clearly when you write down your thoughts. This is important because as a leader, in the middle of big challenges, your thinking can be muddy at best when figuring out a course of action to take. Being clear in your own mind as the leader is imperative before you start communicating to your team.
- You begin to find inspiration in your own writing. And if you don’t you know what you have written is not powerful enough. If you aren’t inspired by what you just wrote, how is the rest of your team going to be inspired? You should never write any communication that doesn’t challenge, inspire, and change someone.
- When you write clearly, you become better in the field. Because you have so clearly communicated what you’re passionate about, your team will be clear on those things and it gives you a platform from which to communicate, and a clear direction for your team to follow.
- Crisp written communication keeps you absolutely clear on the objectives, goals, and mission you have for your team, and this is critical for any leader. You will stay on track and know when you start to deviate from what you communicated, and be able to course correct. And more importantly so will your team.
- Being a better writer means you are also a better note taker. How many meetings have you been in where you walk out and can’t remember some of the details? How many times have you led a meeting and walked out feeling the same way? Great writers are great note takers. Making this important as a leader will set a great example for your team to follow. Expect it and be the example of it.
- Journaling is not something that is often discussed in the same conversation as being a better leader, but it should be. Journaling your thoughts as a leader, every day, helps you to clear the decks, and reset. Getting how you felt about the day on paper is critical to being able to get back after it the following day and be clear on what you need to do more of, less of, or change.
We need leaders who can inspire as much in the way they write as in the way they communicate verbally, and being a better writer can help a leader chart the course for their team to achieve more than was ever thought possible.