As you open this post to read it, I am going to make an assumption: you care about words. If you didn’t care about words, I don’t think you would have clicked to read more. If you didn’t believe in the power of words, you wouldn’t care much what I or anyone else has to say. You wouldn’t buy leadership or self-help or spiritual growth books because they are simply full of words. So yes, my assumption is that you care about words and you believe in the power of words.
I was recently listening to an audio book and the author said these words: “Leaders write because words matter.” I was blown away.
I’m an avid reader. I read books, blog posts, news articles. I listen to podcasts. I try to stay up to date with things going on around the world in leadership, ministry, and current events. I believe in the power of words. I also believe that blogs and books and podcasts get content out in a way that simply speaking and teaching cannot. But I have never quite heard a statement put so succinctly about the power of words coming from a leader.
Leaders write because words matter. Words certainly do matter. With them we have the power to tear down, to build up, to encourage, to challenge, to stand up for what we believe, to reason, to argue. Strategic silence, or the absence of words where words should be, can be a powerful tool as well.
To a leader wondering if he or she should write…the answer is YES! Start a blog. Manuscript your sermons or lessons or talks. Write a book. Start using a journal. Put pen to paper or fingers to keyboard and write. It may very well be the most impactful thing you are able to do. Your words can extend beyond your home, your city, your context and reach a global audience with the simple click of the button that says “publish.”
This article has the potential to be read by people I will never meet in places I will never visit. We’ve established that you should use the power of words and begin writing.
Here are 4 reasons why leaders should be writers:
1. You will become a better leader.
Why does writing make you a better leader? It causes you to think more critically about the things you’re already doing. What context are you leading in? Write about it. Think deeply about your leadership, the unique skill set you provide in the organization you lead in.
As you consider what kind of leader you are and how you can lead even better, journal your growth. Consider what you do well, what you need work in, and where you need to delegate. Becoming a leader who writes can help you become more self-aware as to where your weaknesses are, and hire or delegate so your organization is better suited for growth and success.
2. You will become a better writer.
Obviously practice helps you to hone and develop a skill. It is just natural that the more you write, the better you will be at it. Who knows, one day you may go from journaling privately to writing a New York Times Best Seller! You never would have gotten there without starting somewhere. Become a leader who writes. Utilize and expand the most powerful tool you are already using: words.
3. You will develop a new perspective.
4. You will impact someone’s life.
Writing is your most powerful tool because words are powerful. You can craft and edit and publish some of the most impactful content that can transcend your current placement. Writing and publishing can disciple someone you’ll never be able to have coffee with. You can impact someone you’ll never have the opportunity to meet face-to-face. This alone is enough to encourage a leader to write!
The very thing we try to do in the physical context where we live and work can have a greater impact than just here and now. You can and will impact someone’s life. Nothing published on the Internet goes away—which is both a sobering and an exciting reality. What you write can leave a legacy beyond what you even thought possible.
Take up the challenge to become a leader who writes. You won’t regret it.