“Not all readers are leaders, but all leaders are readers.” – Harry Truman
Harry Truman has some great advice: leaders should read. But since Truman’s presidency, the way we read and get our news has drastically changed. Back then we mostly had books, print newspapers and magazines that were read cover to cover. These days, there are a wide variety of outlets to read and mediums to ingest them — and most news is ingested in bits and pieces! Not only do you have traditional print media, but there are online and electronic versions, apps on your phone or tablet, e-newsletters and social media. And don’t forget about all the niche news sources as well.
With so many outlets and mediums to choose from, what is a leader to do? How does a leader effectively keep on top of world news, national news and industry news while still doing their job? Here are a few key outlets and efficient ways to keep you in the loop.
Traditional News Sources
You can’t go wrong with reading the traditional sources like The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal and CNN. Read the front section, the national and international section, and any niche sections you specialize in. It can be daunting to visit these websites every day, so you can subscribe to the RSS feed to simplify the way you ingest news. This keeps track of new content and strips down the news to the bare essentials like the main text and images.
In addition to traditional news sources, you should keep up with news in your industry as well via magazines or e-newsletters.
- Magazines: For general leadership news, Forbes, Entrepreneur and Inc. focus on business management, leadership and entrepreneurship. In addition, you may also want to read publications specific to your niche. If you’re involved in the medical field like me, you may want to read Prevention or the American Journal of Public Health.
- E-Newsletters: You can subscribe to industry-specific e-newsletters that arrive in your inbox every day. You may want to consider subscribing to SmartBrief, which has more than 200 e-newsletters in partnership with trade associations and professional societies.
In addition to the outlets I mentioned above, you can also choose to get information from their social media outlets like Facebook or Twitter. This may be useful to keep you informed as you’re leisurely scrolling. If you have a LinkedIn profile, follow other leaders in your industry and check out what they’re writing about in the Pulse section. Chances are you’re hearing straight from these top leaders and reading content that you can’t find anywhere else.
There are definitely more outlets and ways to get your news than what I have written in this blog. Although it can be challenging to determine what you should read, and where you should read it and how you should read it, all leaders need to effectively keep on top of the news. Where you and your company will be two to five years from now will depend on the sources its leader reads.