Writing Influence and Impact: A Very Brief Memoir
To understand the basic concept of the book, this video will give you an overview.
The last time I published a book, it was 1994, and I was an Associate Professor of Psychology at Fordham University. I had one child, and another one on the way. The book – Attachment in Adults – was targeted at an academic audience, and I was technically the co-editor, not the author.
In other words, it was a lifetime away. Since that time, I started a software company, left academics, sold the software company, ran the professional services group of the new company, and learned to be an executive coach. Quite a change!
I have continued to want to write – to share ideas, to stimulate others’ ideas, and to help people grow and “become who they are capable of being.” (Goethe). I wrote a number of articles over those 27 years, and for the past half-dozen or so, I’ve been thinking about writing what became “Influence and Impact: Discover and Excel at What Your Organization Needs From You The Most”. I knew that the focus needed to be on people’s ability to lead team members and peers without authority – influence – and deliver results for the organization – impact.
It took me a long time to write the proposal. I knew the process to follow, because I had so many coaching engagements, many successful and some that were not successful. I knew that the people I coached were mostly very strong but were often missing one or two critical aspects of their job. Consistently, they had either misread the job responsibilities, or had misread the culture they were in. I also learned that different organizations embrace very different ways of working, interacting, and communicating.
But how to write a book about it? As I thought about the people, and the organizations, I understood the pattern of my work, and realized that some of this could be done by anyone with the desire to make a few changes that would make all the difference for them. Then, the finishing touches of the proposal came quickly.
Once the proposal was accepted, we wrote the book in just a few months. George was a wonderful writing partner – he kept me on schedule, and we iterated writing and editing different chapters. As is typical for George, and atypical for me, we got a good draft done ahead of schedule, so we had time to revise and improve it. And we delivered it on time.
It was a great experience and produced what I hope is a boon to everyone on their professional journeys. Best of luck to you all!
Influence and Impact: Discover and Excel at What Your Organization Needs From You The Most“. By Bill Berman and George Bradt. Published June 2021 by Wiley, Hoboken NJ.