Are good writing skills the key to serious business?
If you want to be taken seriously, become a better writer, says Dave Kerpen, author, speaker and CEO of Likeable Local, in his latest LinkedIn post. Kerpen despairs at the staggering amount of poorly written emails, resumes and blog posts and offers five tips for better writing. They are good tips.
The most interesting tip Kerpen offers is No.4. Work on your headlines. “Spend equal time and energy working on your headline as you do the piece itself,” he says.
Last week a client sent three headlines to be polished. One was already quite good and many people would have been happy with that but my client wanted it to be stronger. It’s good to see some people see the difference between what things are and what they can be.
“Your writing is a reflection of your thinking,” says Kerpen.
“Clear, succinct, convincing writing will differentiate you as a great thinker and a valuable asset to your team.” He recommends “practice, practice, practice”.
I agree but add one suggestion : practice writing by choosing topics that excite you. Write first without worrying about corrections or perfection. Passion and knowledge does count for something too, and if you don’t get that down first, you’ve got nothing.
Don’t be crushed by the proofreading mobs. Sometimes everso helpful proofreaders crush the pulse out of a piece of writing and leave your long-nurtured voice in the corner gasping for life.
Some people are too busy to dedicate hours to the craft of writing
Writing is not the best use of time for everyone
Yes! There are some people for whom practicing the craft of writing is not the best use of their time. Some people are brilliant at sketching their ideas or turning them into a cartoon. And some people already don’t have enough hours in the day to do those things at which they are highly skilled.
Writing can be hard even for writers. “A writer is somebody for whom writing is more difficult than it is for other people,” said Thomas Mann. The German novelist, short story writer, social critic, philanthropist, essayist, and 1929 Nobel Prize laureate would have known what it is to work at his writing.
Don’t beat yourself up if you’re not the world’s best writer. If you are doing well in your chosen field or focused on a big goal, simply do the best you can with your writing. If needed you can enlist support from a talented writer, editor or coach to nurture you, or at least cover your back.
Even the best writers need back-up and kind support.
The Writing Business provides editorial support and we write.