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Get your career in the fast lane. Write a book. Seriously.

by Celine on January 17th, 2008

Do you think that all it takes to get promotions, raises, and job offers is confined within the four walls of your office cube? The title says it all. Writing a book is a great, albeit uncommon, way to get your name and reputation out there.

Now, before you cringe while remembering how difficult your English class was, give this idea a chance. Why?

Because if you write a book on a particular subject, you’re automatically branded as an expert. It’s that simple. It shows people that you know enough about a subject to pontificate about it.

It doesn’t matter so much whether 10 or 100 people have read your book. As long as you wrote one, most potential employers or colleagues will see that as a credibility boost. Of course, the boost will be much greater if you have thousands of readers.

Publishers don’t have to pick up your book either. You can have it self-published and do quite a bit of marketing if you really want it to sell. Some self-publishing companies you might want to look at: Lulu or Cafepress.

Don’t have enough mojo for an entire book? Try a few articles first. You don’t need to be a full-fledged journalist to get published in a magazine or newspaper. I know this because I did it. Find out which editor you’re supposed to submit entries to, read a few back issues, and send in some sample work with your resume. They’re not even going to bother about your college major as long as the work is good. In most cases, anyway.

If you’re concerned about your (lack of) writing skills, get some outside help.  Whether it’s a journalist friend, a ghostwriter, or an editor, getting a professional’s perspective on your writing can improve the quality of your work.

Whatever you publish, just don’t forget to put it on your resume. Let it leave a lasting footprint on your professional history. Otherwise, it’ll all be forgotten.
So with all those ideas in mind, consider writing a book or an article to further your career. Who knows? If it gets popular enough, you’ll soon be grazing magazine covers just like Timothy Sykes did when he wrote “An American Hedge Fund”. I bet it’s much easier for him to get a high profile Wall Street job compared to an equally qualified candidate without a book.

Have you tried writing a book, magazine, or blog about a topic related to your career? How did it work for you professionally?

POSTED IN: Workplace pimps, Workplace hacks, Creativity, Survival Skills, Cube life

4 opinions for Get your career in the fast lane. Write a book. Seriously.

  • Bob Turek
    Jan 17, 2020 at 2:18 pm

    Celine- I totally agree. I published a couple of books through www.lulu.com on www.lulu.com/workingtheplan (basically excellent free service that prints on demand). I also put articles on the publishing web site they provide. The books have been excellent for gaining jobs and projects for me. Like you said, you are perceived as an “expert” in subjects you write about; i.e., in this case, value selling projects and Rapid Priority Management (a manufacturing on-time shipment solution). Just like anything else it’s got to be good because people interested in you WILL read parts of your book. The value selling book started with a powerpoint presentation and a couple of articles. If anyone wants some help with writing/putting a book together let me know- my rates are cheap :).

  • H. Peter Schiller
    Jan 17, 2020 at 2:24 pm

    Your blog must have gone through a time warp and ended up in my head somehow several months ago. Although I haven’t had a career skyrocket due to a published book, the experience has been positive thus far. Feel free to check out my blog (http://hpeterschiller.blogspot.com) or my book (http://www.lulu.com/content/1178752). I’d really appreciate hearing your comments.

  • Celine
    Jan 17, 2020 at 8:00 pm

    Nice to know that the two of you have experienced this yourselves :)

    Bob - I’d like to talk about your services here at Pimp Your Work. Will contact you privately about this.

  • Marijke
    Jan 19, 2020 at 2:05 pm

    Hi, I guess I’ll have to be the lone dissenter here.

    Writing a book is great exposure - *if* you can write a book. It’s not as easy as many people think it is. Nor is finding a writer who can help you if you aren’t a wordsmith in your own right.

    I’m a writer; I’ve been doing it for years now, mostly health-related writing. I’m building up my credibility slowly, but surely with the articles and such you mention.

    The problem with suggesting that you can just go ahead and publish your own book, which you can, suggests that if you publish it, people will read it. But, if it’s not well written, if it hasn’t been edited and fact-checked and so on, it could come back to bite you in the behind rather than to help you.

    Writing a book is a great idea - but it’s a huge commitment to do it properly.

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