Where does the docs department fit?

Subject: Where does the docs department fit?
From: "Hart, Geoff" <Geoff-H -at- MTL -dot- FERIC -dot- CA>
To: "Techwr-L (E-mail)" <TECHWR-L -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Fri, 6 Oct 2000 08:36:00 -0400

Count me in among the heathen, but I don't think it really matters where on
the org chart you put the documentation group. That's just another inkblot
on the company's rhorschach diagram--so to speak. What's truly important is
not where you fit within the hierarchy, but rather where you fit within the
unwritten relationships that define how the company truly functions.

To be successful, you must work in a place that provides the following
factors (in no particular order):
- Easy exchange of information with the SMEs, developers, scientists,
engineers, accountants, or whoever generates the stuff you're going to be
- A manager with the power (and brains) to remove the obstacles that prevent
you from doing your work. (Obstacles include lack of access to colleagues,
customers, money, etc.)
- Respect for the value you add to your employer's products (expressed in
the form of people soliciting and responding to your opinions and making you
part of the design or development process).
- Adequate resources to do your job, and a means of securing additional
resources when required.
- An open culture that provides sufficient structure without stifling you.
- The ability to obtain training or other education to keep you growing
- Opportunities for new challenges (e.g., promotions, different
communications media, or lateral transfer within the company).
- An adequate supply of chocolate, or a per-diem that lets you obtain this.

(The last three aren't really essential, since they're all things you can do
on your own, but they sure make it a nicer place to work. <g>) Get these
things in place, and it really doesn't matter who you report to.

--Geoff Hart, FERIC, Pointe-Claire, Quebec
geoff-h -at- mtl -dot- feric -dot- ca

"I don't necessarily believe everything I say."--Marshall McLuhan

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