Altucher, James (2013). Choose Yourself! Be Happy, Make Millions, Live the Dream.

Story behind the Passage

Today, it has been two years exactly since I started Companypoets. On Nov 9, 2018, I signed my first contract with a book client. The decision to “choose myself,” to say it in the words of James Altucher, had happened several months earlier. Still, this was the real start into my entrepreneurial life. And it was the best decision ever.

I still do not know what exactly my company is doing but at least, I have managed to survive for two years by creating value for customers. These have been the most fulfilling and liberating years…


Carlson, Richard (1997). Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff and It’s All Small Stuff: Simple Ways to Keep the Little Things from Taking over your Life, 39.

Story behind the Passage

Today, I almost finished writing my first short book on horseback riding. Most of it is not about horses but about humans — in this case me. When I started riding more seriously about a year and a half ago, I was still more impatient than today. I cannot say that I am not impatient anymore but things have improved. That is not all the horse’s achievement — but to some extent it is.

I just checked the etymology dictionary and the word origin of patience actually goes back to the 12th century. Patience thus refers…


Backes, Laura, Sebastian Hammeleleh, Tobias Rapp, and Claudia Voigt. Der Spiegel, 44, 120.

Story behind the Passage

There are writers who have the privilege of publishing with an acclaimed publishing house. And there are writers who get kicked out of a publishing house after 40 years of successful book writing. Both of these things happened to Monika Maron. I have never read a book by her and I cannot form a well-informed opinion about the reasons why she got kicked out. The only things I know about the case come from the Spiegel article entitled “Black Sheep.”

The passage I have chosen for today is from this article. For non-German speakers this long…


McQuail, Denis (2005): McQuail’s Mass Communication Theory, 381.

Story behind the Passage

It was some weekday morning in the spring of 2007, I was 23 years old and in the second semester of my university studies. The wife of a young colleague of my Dad called me at home. “Silke, my boss is looking for someone who can write. We need a magazine for our branch offices and another one for our staff. I remembered that you like writing. Does that sound interesting to you?”

This was the beginning of my practical career in communication. I had never planned on doing “PR” work. I am putting it into…


Aust, Oliver (2020). Unignorable: Build Your Personal Brand and Boost Your Business in 30 Days, 36.

Story behind the Passage

When I was still a kid and did something that was typically “Silke,” my parents used to laugh and say: “Gee, you are a brand of your own!” (German: “Du bist eine Marke”). Just to highlight: My parents never worked in marketing or PR or had any idea about business. They simply used this phrase to explain the inexplicable, something that obviously made me different from other kids. I am not saying this for self-celebration purposes here. We are all different from all others. …


Sass, Steven A. (1982). The Pragmatic Imagination: A History of the Wharton School 1881–1981, 293.

Story behind the Passage

Of course, I have to write about the U.S. election today. But I am not going to write about it in the way that people have been talking about it on TV all day, i.e., about polls, the number of votes, the electoral college, etc. Instead, as a trained American Studies scholar, I want to address “my” people today — those in the humanities and all other “philosophers” out there who very often prefer talking over doing. Oooops, here we are already, that takes us right to the topic.

Today I happened to have a surprise…


Schmidt, Eric, Jonathan Rosenberg, and Alan Eagle (2019). Trillion Dollar Coach: The Leadership Handbook of Silicon Valley’s Bill Campbell, 90–91.

Story behind the Passage

Last year, I talked to someone who founded and successfully scaled a company that specializes in HR Search and Development. It was a true pleasure to get connected with this executive and learn from his expertise. We had not known each other before this initial conversation but we immediately went to the “no bullshit exchange” stage. That means: When I asked him a question about how to develop my business, he simply stated how he was seeing me based on this rather short but still deep conversation. …


Pullman, Philip (2017). Magic Carpets: The Writer’s Responsibilities. Ed. Simon Mason. Daemon Voices: On Stories and Storytelling, 3.

Story behind the Passage

Someone who is thinking about writing a book with me told me today: “Silke, you are very serious about stories. You really mean it. The way you get into stories, it is really deep.” And I said: “Yep, that is who I am. I think in stories. And that is the only thing I can sell. If you want something else, you have to go somewhere else.” He started laughing and shook his head.

This made me think of the book Daemon Voices. A friend gave it to me as a birthday present this year. I…


Roberts, Monty (2002). Horse Sense for People: The Man Who Listens to Horses Talks to People, Foreword.

Story behind the Passage

Many startups want to become unicorns. But the name already indicates how rare they are. Companies valued at over one billion USD can be counted on the fingers of one hand in most nations. Still, the name, despite the rarity, also evokes beauty. Unicorns in fairytales are beautiful creatures, elegant, and in many ways magestic. This not only holds true for unicorns as fantasy creatures, it holds true for real horses as well.

I started writing a book today for riding beginners in their first year. I did not plan on writing a book about this…


Medium

Story behind the Passage

This article above was in my Medium Daily Digest. Sometimes I read the recommended articles, sometimes I do not. Today, I just had to read this one because it directly addressed my present learning about personal branding and impact. Well, the algorithm knows what I am thinking about, right, so how could a suggestion not meet my interest? In any case, after reading the article, I immediately felt I had to “respond” to the text.

Just yesterday, I had explained to someone from a publishing house what my vision is for the release of the new…

Silke Schmidt

Founder & CEO of Companypoets

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