Commencements and Commitments

It’s June, the month of graduations and weddings — commencements and commitments. 

Graduations.  They occur at the end of an academic phase — the end of high school or college, for example — with a commencement ceremony. A commencement is a beginning or start of something new. So, graduations are about ending one phase and starting a new one. 

We are in a commencement phase ourselves. Since 2011, we’ve been writing and publishing nonfiction business books of a prescriptive nature. Now, however, we’re on the cusp of a new chapter — writing and publishing in a new genre — narrative nonfiction. Narrative nonfiction is like a novel. It tells a story or stories.

We've been on a journey writing this narrative nonfiction book. Recognizing there are many stories to tell about the dynamics of workplace behavior, we set out to gather them from our colleagues. Since we wanted to write a compelling and enticing book, we took many storytelling liberties. The stories we heard were molded, tweaked, and often combined with others to fit the structure of the scenes we created throughout this book.

In order to preserve the privacy and identity of the individuals and organizations involved, we created a fictitious company and cast of characters as a backdrop against which we tell these tales. The characters portrayed are composites of a large number of professionals across a wide variety of industries and throughout multiple careers. 

Weddings. They represent commitments. A couple on a journey is looking forward and making commitments to each other about the future.  Our idea for this work of narrative nonfiction formed in 2011 as we concluded writing The Big Book of HR. Along the journey — gathering stories, countless drafts, rewrites, and edits — we were interrupted with requests from our publisher to write three more books. Then there were other life events that stalled us. 

Now we are rocking it. This year alone the manuscript has been in the hands of four HR colleagues for peer review and now it’s been turned over to three beta readers for their critique.  Once we get all this feedback, more rewrites will be done. Then we can move onward to get the book to market.

We know there’s still a great deal more to do — cover design, editing, formatting — but we’re on a solid path to the next stop on our journey. Publication and book launch are planned for 2020. 

Many of our readers have been along on this journey with us.  Now, we invite all of you to keep up with our progress and hold us to our commitment. We’ll be sharing more information in our weekly blog — — and in this monthly newsletter, so please be on the lookout for them. 

Barbara and Cornelia

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Managing people is the most challenging part of any leader's day. And that job certainly is not getting any easier. The Big Book of HR will provide any HR professional, manager, or business owner of any size organization the information they need to get the most from their talent. It is filled with information on everything from the most strategic HR-related issues to the smallest tactical detail of how to manage people.