RE: SMEs and me

Subject: RE: SMEs and me
From: "Sierra Godfrey" <kittenbreath -at- hotbot -dot- com>
To: techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com
Date: Thu, 06 Jul 2000 16:25:30 -0700

Christensen, Kent wrote:
>re: ... yes, you do have to get along with him [SME], but no, you do not
>have to do things his way (unless your boss tells you so)
>
>Pretty naive statement, I'd say. Whatever happened to "the customer is
>always right?" Sounds like the motor vehicle department. The tech writer's
>customer is always the SME. The external customer belongs to the SME, i.e.,
>the team or person designing the product. I don't think this formula varies
>from company to company.


Umm...no. My SME (engineer) does not care at all about the customer, and it has fallen to me to make sure our external customer receives information that is readable and understandable. If the engineer had had his way, the information would have been like he wrote it: understandable only to him, since it was little more than a quick outline of the software.

In addition, not all situations belong to the Andrew Plato School of Black and White Thinking, as you described. My situation requires tweaking.


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