Wearing Many Hats

Subject: Wearing Many Hats
From: "Anita Lewis" <anital -at- threerivers-cams -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Tue, 19 Mar 2002 14:46:52 -0600

My response to the current poll was "significant..." because I am not
only a tech writer (higher education software documentation) but I am
also a trainer. In addition to that I write marketing materials such as
brochures and mailers, respond to RFP/RFI, write website content,
training materials, coordinate events such as user group meetings and
training sessions, and even edit emails to be sent by the higher ups,
for whom English is a second language. I am a subject matter expert,
obviously, but I don't have any expertise except in the fields I worked
in before this. This is a small company, and there is only one other
person who does the same thing. I suppose I'm the jack of all trades,
master of none, which I know will be detrimental should I ever decide to
leave the company. Actually, my favorite part of my job is the
training, because I enjoy traveling and meeting our clients and teaching
them how to effectively use our products. However, all of that leaves
very little time to document our new product. The management adheres to
the philosophy that it's more efficient to have less people doing more
things. This is a nice theory, but realistically, it means marketing is
weak, or documentation is weak, or training is weak, considering we have
to spread ourselves so thin. However, I know that management will not
change their philosophy, so our company will continue to get by (instead
of really taking off).

I'm wondering if there are other writers on this list for whom tech
writing is only a small portion of their jobs? I'd like to subscribe to
a trainers list, but haven't found anything worth considering yet. Does
anyone have any suggestions about where to find something like this?
How do you "jacks-of-all-trades" keep yourselves valuable in your
situations? All input is appreciated.

Anita Lewis
Trainer/Writer
"What can be said at all can be said clearly."
Ludwig Wittgenstein

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