Just Because You Can, Doesn’t Mean You Should!

A lot of people are mesmerized by the idea of publishing a book. They don’t realize the often agonizing process of capturing one’s ideas, articulating a vision and a path to get there!

Let’s be honest - who doesn’t like their name in the spotlight? The glitz, glamor, accolades, and red carpet festivities are where you’re celebrated for the fantastic leader that you are and the wisdom that you seem to share effortlessly.

A lot of people are mesmerized by the idea of publishing a commercial book. They genuinely believe:

a) it’s a walk in the park, 

b) anyone can do it, 

c) it can get done overnight,

d) it’ll dramatically change their lives, etc., etc. 

Many of the same, well-intended, and often astute leaders don’t realize the agonizing process a final book takes to produce.

I’ve been blessed that I’ve published twelve (12) thus far and have a handful of others in my head in various stages. I can tell you firsthand that publishing a book is the classic “just because you can, doesn’t mean you should scenario!” Are many leaders capable of publishing a book? Of course. Should they? I’m not convinced. Here are my top reasons and how we think about each differently:

  1. They’re your ideas/perspectives - Many leaders believe that if they simply pontificated about a problem and how they solved it, that content will be interesting, relevant, and useful to a broader audience. That’s just not true. The challenge could’ve been only yours, in your company, geography, or industry. It may not translate well to a broader audience, their unique situations, or possible solutions to address their challenges and opportunities. The lack of a clear target audience for whom the content is meant and will resonate is one of the biggest reasons many business books fail to meet their objectives. An effective Honey Tate-published business book addresses its intended audience's specific needs, interests, challenges, and opportunities.

  1. Broader variables contributed to your success - You have to give credit where it’s due, yet, a number of factors outside your control could have contributed to the outcomes that made you successful. A thriving economy, a weaker competitor, an exceptional team, readily available capital, or a plethora of resources. If you can’t replicate the scenario, your situation may be interesting to read, but it won’t add much value to your expanded audience. A poorly defined value proposition is another recipe for a business book failure when the book doesn’t offer unique, valuable insights or actionable advice. An impactful Honey Tate-published business book has a well-defined value proposition that clearly articulates what readers will gain from it. 

  1. Your world is an alphabet soup of jargon - “Our marketing plan is simple: we just need to focus our CRM and CMS on ABM for higher CLV and lower CAC, while A/B testing our CTA and UX for CRO, and hope we get some WOM, but don’t ask me about ROI.” That may have worked in your last marketing leadership team discussion, but an inaccessible writing style that feels too dense, jargon-heavy, or poorly organized will make it difficult for readers to engage with or understand. A Honey Tate-published business book has a clear, accessible writing style that simplifies complex ideas, making them pragmatic to consume and practical to apply.

  1. You don’t take people on an elevator ride! Way too many leaders think theoretically or share old-school “motherhood and apple pie” references. Nothing wrong with many of these undisputed truths. The challenge for many readers is that they need a balanced approach between the theoretical or the 50,000 ft. perspective and real-world examples, case studies, or otherwise application and implementation steps to go with the theories. A Honey Tate-published business book demonstrates the applicability of key concepts, making them compelling and particularly useful to our readers.

  1. What’s your story? Many readers may never remember your points. They will always remember your stories. If the book has a weak narrative or structure, you’ll confuse and disengage your readers, often losing them at hello! A Honey Tate-published book comes with a compelling narrative and a coherent structure with storytelling techniques that make the content memorable and engaging. Remember, we live our lives in the narrative.

  1. Your relevance is diminishing. Many industries are evolving at an accelerated pace. If your ideas, perspectives, or recommendations aren’t keeping up with the industry changes, you’re going to struggle to remain relevant, and your book will fail to reflect recent trends, developments, or ideas most relevant to your readers. A Honey Tate-Published book combines wisdom earned over the years with recent and highly relevant research and perspectives and speaks to the needs of its target readers. 

  1. Untapped credibility, repute, or expertise. You’re a well-kept secret, and you haven’t done much to build a platform of followers. Most executives are in a similar position, often due to the demanding nature of their operating roles. The challenge of being lesser known is the lack of perceived credibility, reputation, or expertise, which often may lead the readers to question the accuracy or value of your book’s content. A Honey Tate-Published book encompasses an awareness campaign for our co-authors well in advance of the publication date to ensure the book tackles specific problems, questions, challenges, and opportunities we are in the perfect position to address. 

  1. Your booklet looks and feels cheap! A senior executive I respect immensely decided to self-publish his book and use it to get out in the market and speak after retiring from the CEO role of a publicly-traded company. When I finally held one, it felt cheap. The editing seemed poor. Design and production quality weren’t there, undermining the book's credibility and making it less appealing to the reader. A Honey Tate-Published book looks, feels and is produced by industry professionals with extreme care to ensure it feels on brand with our co-authors. Polished, professional, and worthy of the fantastic insights it contains. 

Remember that writing, producing, and publishing a commercial book is a marathon, not a sprint. There are no quick fixes; if it’s worth doing, it’s worth doing Honey Tate-well done.

Join the conversation

or to participate.