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A visual guide to better writing

Hey there,

Hope your week is off to a great start. Enjoy this week's issue and if you're feeling inspired, pass it on.

1. The Difference Between a First Draft and Second Draft

Here's a short post about how I think about editing. I'm trying to put together some visual aids to help people think more clearly about their writing. If you have any feedback on this one, please do let me know.

A first draft helps you organize your ideas and get your thoughts on paper. It's for the writer. But a second draft should be organized for the reader. The key takeaways are exactly where they need to be. Readers should be able to navigate through the content without exerting themselves.

2. The Cluetrain Manifesto: The End of Business as Usual

Way back in 1999, Rick Levine, Christopher Locke, Doc Searls, and David Weinberger published a list of 95 theses about business to the web. They outlined a future where consumers, users and eyeballs were treated like people. Some of the platforms have changed, but their words are more valuable now than ever.

They eventually published their manifesto as a book, which you can read for free.

3. How to Lead by Design

We're taught to lead by example, but maybe there's a better way. Bill Barnett explains:

Leading by example shows the way, but leading by design creates a system that discovers the way. Those who lead by example are authentic, because they put their words into action. But they are limited to what they know, and what they can do.

Those who lead by design do not invent, nor are they involved in the specific decisions to get the job done. Their names are not on patents. Instead, they build the culture, routines, and structures within which others can flourish. Done well, such leadership creates an organization that takes us places we never imagined.

4. Mental Health is Affecting Your Business

Bench, the bookkeeping company with an amazing blog, just came out with a Mental Health Guide (PDF) for their employees.

All I can say is "wow." Huge kudos to Bench for thinking so holistically about their employees. I highly recommend checking it out.

Have a great week!

Jimmy