What Makes a Title Work: PMA Members Distill Advice from Experience

December 2005
by A PMA Roundtable

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Plain Speaking

My favorite story about the
importance of getting the title right, which I often tell at new-employee
orientations, is about a book we did very early on called Creating Your Own Future.

I often ask people, so what do you
think that book is about? And responses typically include:


new career


starting your own business

The range of responses tells you
that the title is a problem. The book was actually the first book on retirement
planning for women. We sold about 5,000 copies. The year after our book came
out, Henry Holt published a book entitled something like Retirement Planning for
Women. That one sold about 80,000 copies (as I recall). It was a
great—and difficult—lesson about the importance of titling directly
when you have a competitive advantage.




Three to Make Ready

The essential factors, in order of


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