My journey to meaningful blogging
I have come to realize that blogging is making me a better CEO. I have a lot of thoughts (my thoughts have thoughts), but have had a hard time reducing them to writing and process.
When I accepted this blogging challenge for September I had no idea what to expect. I heard what Jason Montoya had to say and thought to myself “Sure, why not?” I figured SOMETHING good had to happen, I just had no idea what. One thing is for sure – there is no way to get to point c without first going from point a to point b. And you can’t steer a parked car – so getting moving is the most important part.
Getting my sea legs
Fast forward just a few days into September. Within a week I had written:
- An “I’m back” blog, which was easy enough
- A “Deceiving yourself” blog, which was something that came to be fairly easily – in part out of frustration from recently hearing yet another friend find a way to justify their spending
- An “Active Mind” blog, which was also written somewhat out of frustration because I couldn’t seem to write anything short and simple. My blogs got long and detailed.
- A “Familiar Voices” blog, because that literally happened, and it was a life saver for me since it was nearly 11pm and I had nothin’.
- A “favorite foods” blog, because that was also a last minute option that saved me from failing the challenge.
- A satire on “Protecting your Social Media privacy“ – in part because I saw something in the news and thought it would be funny to poke fun at the subject.
Not bad for the first week. After all, the idea was simply to write blogs – about pretty much anything. But what I found out about myself is that I have a really hard time writing about things that don’t have some purpose or value. Maybe I am over thinking it.
Having a breakthrough?
At the end of about a week (7 blogging days) I posted a three part series on “Corporate Financial Giving“. (This was the blog I was referring to in frustration when I wrote the “Active Mind” blog.) It took me forever to write, mostly because I had to work through the details. This was great though. It seemed to not only have meaning and potential value for other readers, it had value for CablesAndKits.
Cleaning up as I go
I had to tidy up our process as I went. The process we had was loosely formed and generally understood by various people throughout the company. When it was time to give to a cause, we could get an email thread going with the right people. From there we would hash out the details fairly quickly, and get it done. The issue was that the process lacked … well, process. We’d made decisions over the years and cobbled together a set of guidelines that existed in people’s heads (mostly mine). That was great for a small tight knit company, but not very scalable.
When I decided to write a blog about giving, it quickly became obvious to me that many many people at CablesAndKits had no idea how our giving plan was structured. That meant that not only was I writing to inspire others, but also for alignment and inspiration of the people at CablesAndKits.
An added bonus to organizing and blogging my thoughts is that it serves as somewhat of a process document. This guides the current, AND Future, staff in their thinking and action. So, as new people join our team, they can read about what we do and how we do it. That creates scalabilty.
Building an organization
So here is what I have realized. I need to keep at this, and force myself to tackle writing about things that are meaningful. It will force me to think through things that I talk about frequently, have in my head, or action on a case by case basis, but that the organization as a whole doesn’t know as well as I do.
Getting things out of my head and into process builds the organization. If I rely on my memory, and especially if I allow myself to be to the bottleneck, I am simply a “genius with 1000 helpers” and that is NOT what I want. I want to build processes that build an organization, hire the right people, and support those people in their endeavor to drive toward THEIR vision for doing what it takes to execute toward MY vision for the organization.
Getting these thoughts out of my head and turned into processes that can be understood turns my intentions into reality. That helps me bring clarity to the organization. That makes me a better CEO.