Time to hone those writing skills

by. Dan Berger

From daily emails and memos to the occasional speech or op-ed, most senior executives do some writing as part of their job.

Your written messages – more than your verbal messages – help you to be clearer and more persuasive on your topic. It allows your team to fully understand your mission and where you’re coming from. It also allows for greater accountability – ensuring everyone stays focused on the end goal.

A LinkedIn article on the importance of writing skills notes a tactic used by Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos. The article states, “Jeff Bezos values writing over talking to such an extreme that in Amazon senior executive meetings, ‘before any conversation or discussion begins, everyone sits for 30 minutes in total silence, carefully reading six-page printed memos.’ ” Bezos says writing out this structured of a memo helps promote clear thinking and always addresses the company’s main tenet – its customers.

While we might not have our senior staff write six-page memos addressing current projects or initiatives before every meeting, Bezos’ point is still valid. Writing helps us, as leaders, become better communicators.

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