Re: portfolio questions

Subject: Re: portfolio questions
From: "Kate O'Neill" <kate -at- kathleen -dot- net>
To: John Posada <jposada01 -at- yahoo -dot- com>
Date: Fri, 17 Mar 2000 08:54:32 -0800

John Posada wrote:
> Besides, how thorough a review is needed? Reading a
> page or two of each type of document and looking at a
> few figures out to tell you if the person knows what
> they are doing.

Exactly. When I review a candidate's portfolio, it's about
getting the candidate to talk about the work. Even if I
were to read the manual from cover to cover, I wouldn't be
getting the insight on how this manual almost never went to
print because the writer couldn't get the SME's time (and
how did that get resolved?), or how the writer has a
particular favorite section of the manual that was written
in a trance (which section would that be?).

The point is that it's -far- more valuable to have a
dialogue with the candidate about the sample than it is to
actually -read- the book. After all, isn't there more to
being a good technical writer than how well we write? I'd
like my hires to convince me that they know how to deal
with the pressures of deadlines, SMEs who won't talk,
products that keep changing, etc., none of which can be
magically inferred on my own from reading.

- Kate O'
getting ready for more interviewing soon

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