By Barry Mirakian
Why did I embark on a journey to write a book? I am not an author and had never formally written more than an article for a local newspaper.
One winter morning in Vermont, with the bright sun pouring through the windows, I was in my home office looking at a wall of books, notebooks, and magazines stacked on shelves. They were full of business related reading material, writing, and notes. This was material collected during many years of work, study, and research. The spiral notebooks and three ring binders, stacks of manila folders if stacked in a single pile would have been over four feet high. That did not include what had been thrown out or left behind at places I had previously worked and lived.
I have always had an enormous curiosity about why so many businesses and organizations struggle to succeed and so often fail. I began to think about how I could leverage what I had learned through so many rich experiences, from all the reading, studying, and pondering the subject.
Experiences, good and bad, through both successes and failures were recorded in the vast collection of notes. As I thumbed through the notebooks, memories of the experiences, the serendipitous moments, and revelations flooded my mind. I realized that I had something that I could contribute.
The first seeds of summarizing the material began to form in my mind. I thought if I could organize and use the collected material to help just one business succeed, it would be worth the effort. It was at that time I remembered a saying attributed to Wayne W. Dyer, “Don’t die with the music still in you.”
It was at that moment that I decided that I must write a book. I began to look through more material; to leaf through the business related books heavily marked with pen, pencil and colored marker. I soon began to see common themes. There were quotes from famous and not so famous people. There were quotes rewritten from my memory from others who in real life said them far more eloquently than I.
I began to dig more. The more I dug, the more excited I became. It was like looking back in time over my long career. I began sorting the material by subject in piles on the office floor. Leadership here, strategy there, people, visioning and another half dozen subjects scattered around the office.
I shouted then and there, “I will write a book!”
That was three years ago. I began sorting and writing slowly. As I learned and practiced writing, I sought coaching and support. The process began to accelerate slowly but steadily – like a train leaving a station from a dead stop. The more confidence I gained, the faster the train rolled. The book was completed recently and is now in the process of final editing for publication. As the book progressed, a title and core purpose suddenly became clear. I named the book Growth on the Fly: the Six Core Principles Required for Making Great Business Decisions. The purpose was to help business owners and their organizations understand how to use the book's core principles to make better informed decisions, especially in critical situations or…on the fly.
The original purpose in authoring the book was to use it as a tool to assist business people and clients to benefit from the knowledge I had gained through experience over several decades. But an unexpected benefit presented itself. The more I wrote, the more I learned. Curiosity kept growing and resulted in doing more research. Business situations I had puzzled over for long periods of time suddenly produced a clarity that surprised me. I learned more than I had ever expected.
Most importantly, the music came out.
Barry P. Mirakian is the principle of Continuum Group. He has held executive level positions in both large companies and small businesses. Continuum is focused on small business growth and has served dozens of business owners as an executive and staff advisor, consultant, and coach. Visit Continuum's website or email Barry.