RE: What is our art?

Subject: RE: What is our art?
From: HALL Bill <bill -dot- hall -at- tenix -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Thu, 21 Feb 2002 09:18:18 +1100 (EDT)

What do you tell executives and recruiters technical writers do. Simple:

If we are good, we turn data and information into knowledge, we distil the
knowledge and then pass it on in forms other people can use when they need
to know something. If we are very good, we actually create wisdom. Think
about it...

In some cases our sources of information may already be explicit, which
makes the job somewhat easier. In others we have to squeeze tacit knowledge
out of peoples' heads that would otherwise be lost, so others can learn from

In my organisation I have been reasonably successful getting that message
across. I haven't had to find a new writing gig externally for more than 12
years now, and am currently doing a lot of the work of a Chief Knowledge
Officer for the whole Group (i.e., I am doing the job, but they have not yet
realised they need to create the position and pay me accordingly). Most of
the customers for my writing are internal executives or executives in client
organisations we are trying to win contracts from. Even without the
appropriate pay, the job offers a lot of satisfaction because Tenix is
actually starting to do some very smart things with knowledge and our
clients tell us they like it.

Let's face it. A company's documentation tells its public what they need to
know about the company's products. Sell this to the recruiters and HR people
when you are looking for a job.

Bill Hall
Documentation Systems Analyst
Strategy and Development Group
Tenix Defence
Level 10, Yarra Tower
World Trade Centre
Flinders Street
Melbourne Victoria 3005
Tel: +61 3 8662 7939
+61 3 8662 7600 (switchboard)
Mailto:bill -dot- hall -at- tenix -dot- com

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