Your Office Rockstar, Debbie Gross

Since writing my first book, The Office Rockstar Playbook, clients often ask me, “How did you know where to start”?

My response is not what they expect, but it’s often refreshing for them to hear the truth, followed by “the process.” A process indeed, and that’s before I even started!

Once I decided to write my book, I figured I’d come up with the title first. For some reason, based on how my mind works, that seemed like the logical thing to do.

 Once I had the title, I remember distinctly sitting in my favorite chair, laptop on my lap, completely immobile, staring at the screen thinking, “Now what do I do”? It’s comical now, but at the time, I was paralyzed with fear that I wouldn’t get it done.

I was overwhelmed at the prospect of starting. 

How do I even start writing about the 26 years of my executive assistant career? 

Where do I start? At the beginning and go forward? At the end and work backward? There were so many questions to be answered, and there was an endless supply of resources attempting to answer them. It was too much for me to process and filter through because, after all, I didn’t know what type of author I was. After all, this was my first gig, right?!


One day while sitting in front of a blank screen, it hit me. While this was my first time writing a book, I was already a seasoned writer! I had been writing for years about my views on the executive assistant profession.  Even after retiring from Cisco, I wrote various personal blogs sharing the stories of my working with John.

I am NOT a new writer! New writers can’t do what I do.

I got to work! I remembered that I had a well-established outline that noted all the qualities that make up administrative excellence.  I used this outline many times for interviews and panel discussions. Once again, that amazing divine intervention showed me the direction I needed to take.

I am ALREADY a writer and creator! I have the tools!

That outline would become the “map” I would follow and the place from which I would write. Embedded within this map were stories of my working as the executive assistant to John Chambers and the lessons I learned along my career path.

That outline became the book. All 16 chapters of the Office Rockstar Playbook came from my collections of short stories and experiences as an administrator.

That outline was the spark that ignited the “fire” within me, and that was the starting point that leads me to where I am today.

The Office Rockstar Playbook became a #1 Best-Seller, and we just finished production of The Office Rockstar Playbook: Your Personal Playbook.

The playbook is a companion guide to the original book with actionable strategies to help you “make the play” and apply the principle to your life.  

Keep Rocking On!

Debbie Gross

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