I read an article recently about Jeff Bezos requesting a 6-page printed memo for his meetings and have everyone read it in silence before any conversation or discussion begins. He said
"Full sentences are harder to write, [Bezos] says. They have verbs. The paragraphs have topic sentences. There is no way to write a six-page, narratively structured memo and not have clear thinking."
(via Amazon’s Jeff Bezos: The ultimate disrupter – Fortune Management)
The real work actually happens when the author is writing the memo. It is tough and time consuming but it forces the writer to think out tough questions and formulate clear answers. It gives the writer the opportunity to really think through the topic that he or she wants to present. I find this approach very refreshing because this is one way to really exercise our brain muscles especially if it is not something that you are already doing regularly.
I started writing blogs end of last year to promote "Selling your WHY", www.sellingyourwhy.com, and have made the commitment to myself to publish twice a month. One reason is to create web presence, but the most important reason personally is to have clarity in my message, beside the fact that I realized that I actually have something to say.
If you are not interested in blogging, I would recommend the following:
1) Carry a journal with you all the time.
All of us should have a habit of carrying a journal all the time. You never know which ideas cross your mind in different circumstance therefore capturing these ideas are crucial even without knowing its immediate use. The point is to capture anything that comes to your mind that inspires you.
2) Journaling every day.
Writing needs to be part of your routine in order to experience all of its benefits. The more you write, the more your ideas and goals will align and be reflected in your everyday work. As you practice over time and begin incorporating structure, not only will you see a big shift in your writing from where you started, but also in your verbal communication. Through writing, you will have structured your message in the brain which in turn will give the same structure in your verbal communication. This definitely is challenging and takes time but start gradually with the correct practise.
3) Block a time every day to write.
Most of us have a pretty routine life I would say because we sleep, wake up for work (whatever it is), dinner in the evening and a couple of hours to spare before going to bed. Use 30 minutes of your time before going to bed to write in your journal. In this case, the best thing to write down is 'What are the 5 things that I need to do tomorrow?', in a structured manner.
“Writing is thinking. To write well is to think clearly. That's why it's so hard." - David McCullough