Few writers, at any stage in their career, can make a living solely off their writing. Most of us have a full-time career, what we often call a “day job.” While most of us dream of focusing all of our time on writing, our energy would be better spent learning the skills necessary and reaping the benefits of managing two careers. Here are a couple of skills where I’ve found my writing and my corporate life complement and strengthen each other.
Public speaking isn’t easy for anyone. It requires a pair of skills: writing and speaking. I have found that my ability to do this well at the office has grown as I’ve learned to read my creative work before an audience. In both cases I must compose remarks that introduce, deliver, and engage. I have found the creativity with which I do this in my writing life carries well to the corporate setting.
Project management skills entail the ability to methodically and in an organized manner get work done by forming a team and facilitating the effort of others toward a vision. Having these skills serves my writing career in too many ways to count. Because of my background in project management I know how to break down work, prioritize and sequence tasks, and apply timelines to accomplish them. I also know how to engage others and join forces to accomplish much more than I ever could alone. These serve my writing, workshops, readings, and promotional events––anytime I need to collaborate with others creatively.
As you consider it, you will soon find many overlaps, large and small, between your two careers. You will also find that having two (or more) careers isn’t that uncommon because many others have seen the benefits.