In academia there is a long standing understanding that professors must publish their works on a continuing basis if they expect to remain on the staff. In the railroad industry I won awards in 1964 and 1966 for “Best AAR Bulletin Lead Article.” I wrote a number of articles on crossing accident investigations and other topics related to my job as a claim agent. When I began creating audio-visual shows I had an illustrated article published in a national business magazine about AV production. Then my AV production titled They Can’t Stop was used nationally in the Operation Life Saver Program and it won an Abbey Award for my employer. I wrote a children’s booklet titled The Santa Train and it was distributed to several thousand children when they visited our Santa Train. I remained with the railroad for 35 years before taking an early retirement and from that time on I have been self-employed. Nevertheless, these publications and awards and such resulted in job offers from other organizations and although I did not accept any of them, nevertheless, they provided me with great bargaining tools for salary negotiations. Now what has this got to do with you and your career? That is up to you my friend but so many wonderful things have happened to me and to many of my friends because they took the time to write about their work and their experiences that I am certain that writing can be the key that opens many doors. With the Internet, publication possibilities are unlimited.
One of the real motivators in my life has been national publication of my new ideas. Recognition does not always come to us for our originality on the job and through publication I have won national recognition. That old saying that a prophet is without honor in his home field is often true. I think that the real benefit from all of this is that you will open up your mind to new ideas and discover the reason and the courage to try them.
So get out your yellow pad and keep it with you. When you find yourself doing something special and unique then jot it down and explore it. Publish or Perish? Well, maybe not but it certainly worked for me.