Re: Do I have a right to feel POed??

Subject: Re: Do I have a right to feel POed??
From: Kevin McLauchlan <kmclauchlan -at- chrysalis-its -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Fri, 23 Aug 2002 10:45:03 -0400

On Thursday 22 August 2002 15:55, Tom Murrell wrote:
> The next time they need to call a meeting of the
> "Key Participants" on a project, the writers will be left
> off the list, forgotten, or ignored. It's frustrating.
> It's enough to drive a good writer to drink (often not a
> long trip, I admit). But there it is.
> What you have to do is deal with it anyway.

Oo! Oo! <waving hand> Anecdote time!

In a previous incarnation, I had that kind of experience.
I got handed a "to-do" list that clashed rather hideously
with the rest of my schedule (and those of other people
who were counting on me and who had enlisted my
participation in their projects). The honcho in question
did not react well when I told him where his requirement
would fit into my (and my other "clients'") existing
schedule. [There were basically a handful of small
project teams at the company, each developing a
product for separate customer. We did "one-offs" and
small numbers of custom microwave/satellite-link

I was able to acquire "minutes" (well, they weren't really
that official and organized) from the meetings his group
had held over a period of about three months. I gathered
them into an annotated timeline and sent them to the
culprit -- and to half the rest of the company -- with my
own additions. At key points in the chronology, I inserted
my comments like: "And this was where I told you what
I needed to document your product and what seemed to
be the conflicts with other project schedules, and we
agreed that your project was simple enough that the
product would not need documentation."

(Or words to that effect.)

There were several of those, sprinkled through the record.
At the end, I noted that they were fictional, but "were what
I would have told you if you had consulted me,
acknowledging the needs and priorities of other project
leaders -- who, incidentally, kept in touch with me and
each other to resolve any conflicts as they appeared."

Again, "words to that effect". This was about 1990.

The idea was to praise the other managers/leaders and
to highlight how -- by maintaining contact/negotiations
with the lone writer -- they were respecting each other
and not presuming to hijack limited resources without

He certainly showed me what a mistake it was to cross
him, though. He hired a freelancer. ... at additional
cost, only to get his documents late anyway, and not
as polished as he'd have gotten from somebody who
knew the company's products and milieu, and who
therefore would have picked up the nuances in a fraction
of the time.

I left to join Ericsson, not long after, so I never really
suffered the wrath. Hope my replacement did ok. I did
coach him. :-)


** DIR-ty DEEDS, and they're DONE dirt cheap. (Sing it,

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RE: Do I have a right to feel POed??: From: Tom Murrell

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