Writing institutional history

Writing institutional history extends beyond mere documentation to create a unified mindset among all the stakeholders in any organization — achieving buy-in from employees, cultivating new board members, educating clients about the organzation’s triumphs, and attracting prospects whose interests align with the organization’s vision.

Exponent is an international scientific consultancy headquartered in California. The book Exponent(50), pictured here, was published on the company’s fiftieth anniversary and described dozens of prominent case studies from its history. Written in a breezy but technically accurate magazine style, and amply illustrated throughout, the book stands out on any client’s reception coffee table.

In contrast, The Chicago Community Trust’s history offers a rich narrative of the public charity’s first hundred years — supplementing the story of its early founding with the more recent developments of the late 20th and early 21st centuries. The book portrays the Trust as a regional force in the advancement of Chicago and its immediate surroundings.