You don’t have to be interested in writing as a career to take writing seriously. Writing is one of the top two forms of human communication. A case could be made for nonverbal communication preceding verbal communication. Those early drawings on caves could be considered a form of writing. We have always had a need to write things down.
If you need to leave a message, instructions, or your ideas on cake vs. pie for people who are not presently with you, then you will want to know how to communicate clearly in written form. If you have a lot of information to share that will have to be referenced later, writing skills are key. If you need to archive information, you have to be able to write well.
All of these needs are present in many jobs for which you will want to apply. You will have to be able to write with clarity. You will also need to be convincing. At times, you will have to be entertaining. This is not as easy in written form as it is verbally. So if you hope to rise through the ranks in the following fields, you best believe that the pen is mightier than just about everything else:
It starts out with your application to university. You don’t just become a project manager without going through a lot of steps along the way. Your application has to be well-written. Applying for a good school may be the first time many people realize the importance of writing.
If you are taking the path of architecture, you might have to submit an architecture portfolio. You might think architecture is all about drawing skills. That is incorrect. NewSchool describes part of a good portfolio presentation this way:
Demonstration of an understanding of functional and experiential issues related to the design of architecture built environments, and/or artifacts, such as structural, environmental, and building systems; spatial generation, organization, perception, and design solutions; and specific project results reflection contextual and programmatic demands.
From there, the task of management involves even more written skills. At that level, you are doing more writing than talking. If your instructions are not extremely precise, the project tanks. You don’t have to do much writing as a construction laborer. But if you want to be the project manager giving the orders, you will want to double-down on your written communication skills.
Supervisor in Any Industry
If you are going to get up to and beyond middle management, you will have to do a lot of writing. This is true for just about every industry you can think of. Not only do supervisors have a lot of writing to do, they often have to get writing from their work teams.
Often, the rank and file worker has no idea how much paperwork is involved at the next level. They hate writing but they desperately want the promotion. Without strong written skills, you will not have a chance at that next level most of the time in most industries.
Every stage of the political process is steeped in writing. Law is drenched in ink. There is even more black ink than red tape. Just to get elected, you have to write campaign speeches. You have to write to your supporters. And you have to write fund-raising letters. If you get the job, you have to write proposals and endless revisions. You will have to write bills, and ultimately, laws.
If you decide to go into law and become a judge, you will have to write legal opinions. And those opinions will be read and scrutinized, pretty much forever. The most coveted positions of responsibility require a high level of facility with the written word.
If you hate writing, you are limiting your career potential. If you hope to become a project manager, a supervisor and beyond, or a lawmaker, you can get a leg up by improving your writing.