When I was a young ghostwriter at GM, a senior executive in public affairs who had also been a ghostwriter at one time contended that he "had made" the reputation of a former chief executive officer. I assumed that he was being grandiose. Soon enough I recognized that the role of ghostwriter is much more than a wordsmith who takes detailed orders.
In essence, we are Idea Factories who produce a continuous line of diverse topics executives can discuss in print, digital, audio, video, and on their feet. That positioning has become solidified in a digital era when everything is changing so fast. Executives who are earning their keep doing what they have to do don't have the time to keep up, never mind sort out seminal developments they should be addressing from blips no one will pay attention to five hours from now.
When we are called to meet with a prospect we have to have already assessed what subjects are worth their investing in. We don't suggest. We argue why certain choices are the best bets.
In his landmark book "The Power Game," Hedrick Smith hammered that confidence is a key source of power. That has been confirmed over and over again among our clients. Now we have to ensure that our clients see that quality in the ghostwriters they employ. We have to present our ideas with all salesmanship of a Steve Jobs.