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Polymathic Monthly - Issue #26: Writing, Reputation and Future Work

Hope your summer break is going great! It's a special summer issue of your fave newsletter ;) This is

Polymathic Monthly

July 22 · Issue #26 · View online
A curation of articles, tech, books and innovation strategy to enrich your career and personal lives.

Hope your summer break is going great! It’s a special summer issue of your fave newsletter ;) This issue is a product pitch. But first, a story. One with all the links that you love! 

3 years ago my family moved to Austin TX. Save for my in-laws and a couple of friends/intros, I had no network. Every weekday morning, like clockwork, I would drop my son at school and find a Starbucks to write/read. Writing - borrowing from Malcolm GladwellBrett Stephens and Stephen King - allowed me to think. Reading allowed me to learn enough to flesh out what I’d written.

Slowly, reader engagement grew from ~200 views/9 likes to tens of thousands of views/likes. Some ideas were way off. But some were absolutely spot on predicting massive business moves. So I kept writing.

As reader numbers increased I accepted requests to ghostwrite brand building content and consult for F500 executives, unicorn startups and small businesses. Heavy traffic sites syndicated my content. I gave keynotes at conferences I wouldn’t have paid for. I got accolades that were (honestly) odd and gave me access to people I admired. It was brand/reputation building and career enhancing. All because I wrote. 
I learned a few things from these experiences;
  1. The consistency of my writing was improving the quality (David Bayles and Ted Orland). I wrote (still write) some crap. But my crap today is much better than what I considered great last month.
  2. Writing creates opportunity: The clients could have done the writing themselves but they lacked Creative Confidence (David Kelley) and a sense of Mastery (Robert Greene). 
  3. By 2027, the majority of US workers will freelance, alongside their regular employment [PDF]. All clients cared about was the quality of my writing, not my formal degrees or other engagements, because I had shown my work (Austin Kleon) and they’d seen my thoughts.
  4. We are moving from the ‘information age’ to the ‘reputation age’. Firms in industries unrelated to mine opened their books so I could write in their voice. I was experiencing the new form of work Tim O'Reilly suggests in ‘WTF’. 
  5. Business is starting to recognize that to write is to think. Jeff Bezos thinks soWarren Buffett does it consistently and Steven Sinofsky’s business model at Microsoft depended on it. This past week Fred Wilson wrote a post on writing.
I believe you should all write. Write for your life. Write to build your personal brand for your career. Write to let your next client see your work.

To ensure that you all write - to build your brand or your business’s brand -I’ve reverse engineered the process I’ve been using and built a tool, Harper Jacobs, that enables anyone to 'Write More…Better’. Unlike other tools that present you with a blinking cursor, it walks you through the creation of quality brand building content. We edit and, because we know propagation is important, you can publish directly to Medium and LinkedIn, the two best platforms for brand building, from Harper Jacobs

I’d love love love if you would sign up and write for your next role/client. The tool is free for the next few days, just use any of the Stripe test cards here, and it’ll cost $70/month for basic or $299/month for business. Or share with at least one person who needs to build a personal or company brand through content. One.

Folk reach out to me asking ‘how do you do it?’. I tell them I just write. Now you can too with Harper Jacobs.

I’d love to hear from you! PM will be back in a few weeks. Enjoy the rest of summer!
n/b: Please share on Linkedin or copy and tweet ‘To ensure that you all write - to build your brand or your business’s brand -I’ve reverse engineered the process I’ve been using and built a tool, Harper Jacobs, that enables anyone to 'Write More…Better’.
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