Time estimates and getting credit?

Subject: Time estimates and getting credit?
From: "Hart, Geoff" <Geoff-H -at- MTL -dot- FERIC -dot- CA>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Fri, 2 Mar 2001 09:44:09 -0500

Anonymous <<... recently put together a proposal for a project... I am the
only technical writer and work under a team lead... my manager ... wrote a
cover letter ... [in which] she gives my team lead and I equal credit, but
really, I was the one who put the numbers together and did the research.>>

While it's true that the overall job wouldn't get done without the team
(including the team lead), asking for credit for your efforts is not selfish
and doesn't mean that you have no team spirit. The reality of the working
world: if people don't know exactly what you do, they'll gradually forget
you exist and start taking you for granted. The trick is to make sure that
you can bring your efforts to their attention without whining or looking
like you're a glory hog.

<<am I just being an attention-seeker for wanting full credit for this

Nope. It's important to make sure that the higher-ups know your value. One
way that works is to periodically show up and provide an update: "For your
information, this is what I've completed. You should be receiving it any day
now. Call if you have any questions." Managers like being kept well informed
of the state of things, and if you can provide them with this necessary
knowledge, you're not blowing your own horn: you're helping them do their
own job. That's the kind of thing they remember.

<<My team lead even mentioned that she didn't know why my manager was giving
her partial credit for putting it together. Her comment was, "You put this
together, not me.">>

Then perhaps she should be the one to mention this to your manager?
Certainly, acknowledge that the team lead provided some input (such as
creating the overall project and giving it definition), but make sure you
get the lion's share of the credit for those aspects that you performed.

--Geoff Hart, FERIC, Pointe-Claire, Quebec
geoff-h -at- mtl -dot- feric -dot- ca
"User's advocate" online monthly at

Tarzan's rule of data processing: Never let go of
one vine until you have a solid hold of the next.--Anon.

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